FLUSHING, NY, January 23, 2017—The results of a recent study by the Equality of Opportunity Project, as reported on in the New York Times, provide insight into how well Queens College is propelling students up the economic ladder. Using federal Internal Revenue Service (IRS) data, the study of 2,200 U.S. colleges and universities compared parental income for about 30 million students born between 1980 and 1991, to these same students’ income as college-educated adults. The analysis ranks Queens College in the top 1% of all colleges in moving students from the bottom fifth of the income distribution to the top fifth.
“Albeit this study is but one indicator, it powerfully demonstrates that when it comes to economic mobility, Queens College—approaching its eightieth anniversary of serving the people of New York—is making a larger impact than virtually every other college in the country,” says Queens College President Félix V. Matos Rodríguez. “When our students—rich in ambition, talent, and creativity—are given the advantage of a high-quality, world-class faculty, they become the backbone of our city and state workforce.”
The City University of New York as a whole ranks in the top tier in helping students work their way from poverty to prosperity. CUNY moved almost six times as many low-income students into the middle class and beyond as did all eight Ivy League campuses, Duke, M.I.T., Stanford, and Chicago, combined.
“Queens College students are active citizens, top-flight professionals, job creators, and productive taxpayers,” adds Matos Rodríguez. “Most often they live or work in the metropolitan region, anchoring their neighborhoods, contributing to long-term growth, more than paying back the investment the city and state made in their education. Hard-working students improving their economic standing and strengthening the economy of our city, state, and nation is a story we all can be proud of.”
Queens College first opened its doors in the fall of 1937 with the goal of providing a first-class education to students from all financial and ethnic backgrounds, an education that would lift them from often humble circumstances to becoming active and prosperous participants in the American Dream.
The Equality of Opportunity Project is a think tank that uses big data—extremely large data sets which, through analysis, can reveal patterns, trends, and associations—to report on how each college in America affects its students’ prospects of upward mobility. Comprised of a group of economists—and other social scientists—who are trying to find the most effective and efficient ways to address chronic poverty, the Equality of Opportunity Project works to identify ways to help more children climb the income ladder through higher education.