It seems as though there is a problem with high achieving high school seniors who come from limited means and where they apply for college.
The analysis results may not surprise too many people, especially those in the middle and lower economic wage earner bracket. Perhaps it will cause some nose twitching in the well to do ranks.
The long and short of this study is that very bright high school students who score very well on the college SAT's, if they are from families of limited means, don't end up at the big Universities.
They tend to stay, or perhaps end up is a better term, at community colleges and state universities. In doing so, their graduation rate is lower than those high SAT earners of well to do families who go on to the bigger universities.
There are multiple reasons for this, some of which are pointed out in the analysis.
First, being recruited for a Yale, Brown, Berkeley, Harvard, MIT, and others in that kind of institution, isn't all that likely, especially if the student is too far outside of a major metropolitan area.
Even if the recruiter from Penn State or Notre Dame does make it to the poor part of town and finds a SAT worthy student, that student probably doesn't have a role model that would allow them to think that they could be successful at such a place.
If they are offered a full ride to Wellesley, UCLA, or U Conn, they are likely to lack the means to fully participate in the total university experience. The tuition and meal plan don't really cover all the other things that students from high income families partake of.
Staying at the local level, with what they know, among people they know, can mean a lesser chance of success, as the resources to make sure students do well and graduate are far less at the community college or state university.
It's quite a puzzle, and one that has long term effects on the lower income students.
What the analysis points out is that the big schools just don't do enough to make sure high SAT score/Low Income students are recruited aggressively enough.
The gap that is obvious. Lower income, very bright students are not making it to the Bigs like similar high income, very bright students do.
The disadvantages are the contacts that aren't made, the internships that never come about, the recruiting that doesn't take place, and other very tangible benefits of attending the more well known schools.
It's a difficult issue, one that isn't likely to go away very soon. With the economy in the state of flux that it's been in, and looks to be in for a while, the gaposis will probably get worse.