Dear Youth Voices Community,

My name is Aleah Jefferson. I am a senior in Media Academy class of 2017.

The social inequity problem I am looking into is not enough Community College students graduate and land their dream jobs.  The demographic group I am most focused on for this inequity is low-income areas of color because the majority of suburban students are less likely to be of color and attend a community college. The reason I feel this is an inequity is because students of color are more likely to spend their money and receive an education that will not in the long run benefit them.

Right now, I believe a solution to this problem would be to higher more professional and acquitted college advisors and counselors.

Some might argue that some community college students do land the job of their dreams, making my research focus debatable.

Fremont High School seniors are now curating sources to explain our inequity and its impact on society and to develop arguments for why and how this inequity needs to be addressed. If you have ideas for sources I should explore, please send me those ideas or links in the comment section. I would greatly appreciate your feedback and help.

Sincerely,

Aleah Jefferson
Fremont High School

CC BY-SA 4.0 What Can A Community College Do For You? by Aleah is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

7 Comments
  1. Jenessa 3 weeks ago

    Hi Aleah! Great points stated in your post. I agree that college should be more affordable, and that low-income people of color do not always have the best circumstances when talking about a college. I believe the first step actually starts with Elementary school. Public schools are governed mostly by the state, so states regulate the amount of certification needed to be a teacher, to build a school, location, bus stops, etc. With that said, many low-income families are not provided with a good baseline education, which then does not set them up for success in their middle, and high school. I would look into the certifications and locations of public schools, and follow-up with their test stats.

    Good luck researching!! I hope it goes well.

    Jenessa

  2. Alex 3 weeks ago

    Aleah, I found this article to be intriguing. Community College can be a great option for many graduating high school students, but many of these colleges aren’t well equipped to help the students’ future. Here is an article that may help with solutions on the topic. https://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/12/upshot/how-to-improve-graduation-rates-at-community-colleges.html?mcubz=0

  3. Emily 3 weeks ago

    Aleah-
    While I think this is an important topic, many people do not talk about it. It is great you are trying to find statistics for community college graduates with proper paying/ sustainable jobs, I think it would also be interestig to look at the percent of community college attendees that are recruited by larger schools for athletics, and then go on to athletic based careers. I have heard and read many stories about young athletes attending Junior Colleges and Community colleges to further improve their skills or even to gain the means to attend a stronger University with more credentials. The following are articles that could support my idea as well as your thesis:
    http://hechingerreport.org/new-book-addresses-low-community-college-graduation-rates/
    http://www.ncaa.org/about/resources/research/estimated-probability-competing-college-athletics
    https://www.azdesertswarm.com/recruiting/2017/6/27/15882126/arizona-wildcats-football-recruiting-junior-college-offensive-lineman-maisen-knight-verbally-commits

  4. Oliver 3 weeks ago

    Dear Aleah,
    I believe this is a very important topic that we need to fix, and get everyone an education. I think your ideas are great to have more professional counselors and advisors, although I believe that will only help for leaving college and getting a job in the real world. I think we need to focus more getting low income families into college and the main reason they do not go to school is because of cost. Colleges can cost a lot of money, even community colleges, and low income families would struggle to pay for it. In the late 1800’s, early 1900’s, the University of California Berkley, was free admittance along with other colleges, there for more kids were going to college because they were able to. If we can find a way for either affordable for all or free college, to low income families, we can fix this issues and help them get jobs and support themselves and their families. I really like you have to say, hope to see more about it.
    Sincerely,
    Oliver

  5. Anthony 3 weeks ago

    Aleah, I would agree with you that today education to some people seems like great equalizer in today’s society, but a number of students are now suggesting the education system may not be doing its job in effectively after post graduation.

    Stanford Research Examines Test Scores

    A number recent studies have indicated the gap between rich and poor is widening all the way up the academic ladder. While it is no secret that students coming from wealthy families tend to perform better in school, what is concerning is the fact that the inequality actually seems to be getting worse, rather than stabilizing. According to Sean Reardon, an associate professor of education at Stanford, the gap has steadily grown over the past 50 years, according to his research.

    “We had expected the relationship between family income and children’s test scores to be pretty stable over time,” Reardon told the Stanford University News. “But the fact that the gap has grown substantially, especially in the last 25 years, was quite surprising, striking and troubling.”

    Reardon’s research involved the study of student test scores beginning in 1960 through 2007. Twelve data sets were used to compare families in the 90th income percentile to those in the 10th income percentile. Reardon discovered that the gap between the two widened by as much as 40 percent throughout that time frame. Today, the income gap is nearly twice the gap in test scores between black and white students..

    I would also agree with you that counselors and college advisors should have the best knowledge and ways to help students navigate through the college process and even helping them when trying to stabilize themselves in a job career.

    https://www.communitycollegereview.com/blog/wealthier-students-taking-community-college-path

  6. Rachel 11 months ago

    Aleah, I found your piece quite interesting. I believe another possible solution would be lowering college tuition. I wrote a more in depth essay a few weeks back dealing with this same issue if you wanted to look at that. Good luck with your research journey 🙂

  7. Karen 1 year ago

    Dear Aleah,

    I think this is a very important topic, and I am glad you are looking into it.

    I believe that it is true that low income and students of color are less likely to finish school. Often this is because they have to work full time jobs while they are in school in order to afford it. Also some students can’t afford the expensive textbooks that are required, and of course, it is difficult to succeed without textbooks. (There are some people who are making free textbooks available to help with this. See https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2015/08/04/era-400-college-textbook-affordability-initiatives-take-utilitarian-approach and https://www.edsurge.com/news/2016-07-06-with-5-million-for-z-degrees-small-change-is-a-big-step-for-california-community-colleges. I think that lower tuition costs would also help. See http://www.usnews.com/news/the-report/articles/2015/11/06/college-affordability-is-still-an-issue-today)

    I agree that good counselors would help. We all need a lot of support to succeed.

    I will look forward to reading more about what you learn.

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