Ready or Not

For all the talk about whether college is worth its potentially crushing costs, graduating from college remains one of the only vehicles that reliably propels Americans out of poverty. Yet just half of low-income college students earn degrees in six years. For students from struggling cities, the odds are even steeper. Are they ready for college? And are colleges ready to help them graduate? An ongoing series from Detroit and Newark in the 2019-20 school year examines those questions.

In a new project, Chalkbeat reporters in Detroit and Newark are following recent high school graduates in their first year of college — a time when when many students fall off track.
A report from a Michigan nonprofit highlights the struggles Detroit high school graduates face in college, and what can be done to help them.
Jalen Rose Leadership Academy’s alumni success coordinator, Katherine Grow, traveled more than 2,600 miles in a single semester visiting graduates at their universities.
Certain policies, particularly tuition grants paired with intensive, in-college support, can substantially raise students’ chances of completing college.
In his new book, “The Years That Matter Most,” Paul Tough looks at why so many low-income students don’t make it to college. Here’s what he told us.
With so many under-prepared students getting trapped in basic skills classes, some colleges have experimented with online remediation — but the results have been mixed.
I didn’t realize it at the time, but a lot of the resources I experienced were new because of New York City’s recent initiative to get more students to college.
The initiatives differ in scope and length, but all reflect hope that extra help for first-generation college students and underrepresented students will pay off
Chalkbeat Detroit last month launched a year-long series following four recent Detroit high school graduates through their first year of college.
Chalkbeat Detroit and Detroit Public Television are spending the year following Detroit graduates through their first year of college.
Yamin Reddick is determined to graduate from college and become Newark’s next great leader. But first, he must make it through a summer “boot camp” designed to prepare disadvantaged high school graduates for college.
Chalkbeat Detroit is following four Detroit high school grads to see how prepared they are for the challenges of college.