Finding her on Facebook, I skimmed her page, halting when I got to “education.” I looked once, then twice. I found only the name of the high school we attended together. You’ve got to be kidding me, I thought. She was hands-down the smartest girl I knew in high school, a whiz at math and science. Yet she hadn’t graduated from college. Though I can’t say for sure, I have a strong hunch it had to do with finances. Unfortunately, she’s just one would-be college graduate who’s part of a widespread trend that’s still happening today.
The problem? The majority of high-achieving, low-income high school students do not even apply to the nation’s best colleges. This decision has long-term, negative consequences for these students, according to education researchers and economists at Harvard and Stanford who conducted a broad-based analysis of every high school student in the U.S. who took the SAT in a recent year.