Biggest Source of Inequality Is Lack of College Diploma

Posted by Maica Pichler on June 11, 2014 at 11:10 AM

As of November 2014, Redeeming America's Promise is now named the Campaign for Free College Tuition. American Promise scholarships are now known as National Promise scholarships.

The increasing gap between the richest 1% in America and the incomes of everyone else has been a hot topic of conversation in the media and among policy makers.  It’s a real problem and the best selling economics book of the last few decades, Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the 21st Century, has ignited a much needed debate over how best to address the problem.

But new research from MIT economist David Autor contends that the failure to get a college degree has actually been a greater source of economic inequality over the last five years than the income gains of the super-rich.  Autor points out that from 1980 to 2012, inflation-adjusted, full-time earnings of college-educated males increased anywhere from 20 percent to 56 percent, depending on whether they also acquired graduate degrees. Conversely, real earnings of high school graduates fell 11 percent, and earnings of high school dropouts fell 22 percent. As a result, the earnings gap between the median college-educated two-income family and the median high school-educated two-income family rose by $28,000 between 1979 and 2012. This shift is four times as large as the redistribution that has taken place from the bottom 99 percent to the top 1 percent of households in the same period.

If we are serious about addressing economic inequality, we must make it possible for any academically capable and personally determined student, regardless of their financial circumstances, to be able to afford a college education. That is precisely the goal that everyone at Redeeming America’s Promise is dedicated to achieve. Join our initiative and begin to close the economic inequality gap in the United State by endorsing our plan

We can't do this alone!

Our goal is to make higher education a possibility for every American, without regard to their financial circumstances.

We have a lot to do and not much time to do it, so your support is critical for our campaign to succeed. It’s with your investment that we can fundamentally reform how higher education is financed in this country, opening the doors to a more equitable society.

If you agree with our goal, our plan, and the urgency of the problem, we ask that you give what you can to help us write the next chapter in our nation’s history of continuously expanding access to universal, free education.

The Campaign for Free College Tuition is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization established in the State of Washington in 2014 to educate parents, students, the higher education community, policy makers and taxpayers about efforts needed to fundamentally reform our nation’s system for financing higher education. This website and CFCT’s educational outreach activities are made possible through generous individual and foundation support.