Education is essential to the elimination of poverty. Graduate Gateway focuses on ensuring that promising low-income students have the financial and personal resources they need to graduate with a bachelor’s degree. Low-income students are less likely than other high school graduates to enroll in a post-secondary institution and complete a degree. In 2013, the Census Bureau reported that only 28.8% of all adults over the age of 25 have obtained at least a bachelor’s degree. In Texas, the percentage of adults with a bachelor’s degree is only 26.7%.
The employment rate is generally higher for those with higher levels of educational attainment. The National Center for Education Statistics reported that in 2014, the employment rate for young adults ages 20 to 24 with at least a bachelor's degree was higher than the rate for young adults who completed some college (88.1% vs. 75.0%) The employment rate for young adults with some college education was higher than the rate for those who had completed high school (63.7%), and higher than the employment rate for those young adults who had not finished high school (46.6%). Employment increase with higher levels of educational attainment is present for workers ages 25 to 64 years old and applies to both men and women in all age groups.Read more at https://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=561
One of the key factors in predicting whether or not someone will live in poverty; is their highest level of educational achievement. Not only were those individuals with a college degree less likely to face unemployment, they were also more significantly compensated than those with less education. The Census Bureau reports that individuals over the age of 25 without a high school diploma had mean earnings in 2009 of approximately $20,000, while those with only a high school diploma earned an average of $30,600, and those with a bachelor’s degree earned an average of $56,700, which is 284% more than those without a high school diploma.
Those who are able to make an investment in higher education receive substantial economic benefits that last a lifetime. Because they are able to be financially self-sufficient, college graduates are less likely to require government assistance and are more likely to live self- sufficiently rather than depending on others for support. Graduate Gateway focuses its efforts on ensuring that promising low-income students have the financial and other resources that they need to complete their bachelor’s degrees. This support is critical, as low-income students are not only less likely to matriculate to a post-secondary institution, but are also far less likely to graduate than their higher income peers. According to the Census Bureau, only 27.5% of all adults over the age of 25 have obtained at least a bachelor’s degree. In Texas the rate is lower, with only 25.2% of adults achieving their bachelor’s degree.
One of the main obstacles to obtaining a college education is that a student must first complete high school. According to spotlightonpoverty.org, around 70% of all American students graduate on time with their high school diploma. For low-income students, this figure drops to around 50%. Even those low-income students who do graduate from high school are far less likely to attend college than their higher income peers. The National Center for Education Statistics reports that for the 2007-2008 school year, 52% of graduates from low poverty high schools continued their education at a four-year college compared to only 28% of students from high poverty high schools. Because only 50% of low-income students are graduating with their high school diplomas and even fewer of those students are matriculating to a four-year college, it is crucial that those who choose to attend college receive the support that they need to excel and graduate.
The goal of the Graduate Gateway Organization is to ensure that the low-income students accepted into our program are able to graduate on time and with a solid career plan in place.