Students from high-income families tend to attend pricier colleges and take on more debt, according to this report from the Manhattan Institute. The report shows that from 2011-12 to 2015-16, borrowing for bachelor’s and associate degrees rose by approximately $4,500 for families making more than $120,000 a year and about $1,400 for low-income students.

Findings suggest that many students prefer higher short-run costs in exchange for higher expected long-run returns (often in the form of better-paying jobs). Thus, efforts to assess college affordability that ignore long-run returns and focus exclusively on short-run costs paint an incomplete picture of the value delivered to students.


Borrowing Increases Most Among Wealthy Students | Inside Higher Ed | Jan. 9, 2019