Originally published on Sun November 30, 2014 4:38 pm
This story is part of the New Boom series on millennials in America.
If Noelle Johnson had a bachelor's degree, she'd be able to live closer to work, she says. She wouldn't have to spend so much of her free time hustling for baby-sitting gigs. She'd shop at the farmers market. She'd be able to treat her sister to dinner for once. She and her husband could go on trips together — they'd be able to afford two tickets instead of one.
77 million Americans have debt in collections, a full third of everyone in the country with a credit line. According to the Urban Institute, they also owe an average of more than $5,000. Medical, credit cards and utility bills are for many Americans going unpaid.
Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 11:51 am
At some schools, the admissions process itself can work against low-income students, according to Georgia Nugent, former president of Kenyon College and a senior fellow at the Council of Independent Colleges.
Nugent says during her tenure at Kenyon, there were low-income students at the bottom of the admissions list who sometimes weren't accepted so the school could make room for more affluent students.
A striking look at how three girls from middle to low income families in Galveston are fighting their way toward a college education and success. “Everyone wants to think of education as an equalizer — the place where upward mobility gets started,” said Greg J. Duncan, an economist at the University of California, Irvine. “But on virtually every measure we have, the gaps between high- and low-income kids are widening. It’s very disheartening.”
"I don't want to work at Walmart" like her mother, she wrote to a school counselor. Weekends and summers were devoted to a college-readiness program, where her best friends, Melissa O'Neal and Bianca Gonzalez, shared her drive to "get off the island" - escape the prospect of dead-end lives in luckless Galveston.