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Do Universities Benefit Local Youth? Evidence from University and College Participation, and Graduate Earnings Following the Creation of a New University

  • Frenette, Marc

In this study, I explore the relationship between the presence of a local university in a city and university and college participation among local youth. The evidence is drawn from Census data, along with information on the creation of new university degree-granting institutions in Canada. Students who do not have access to a local university are far less likely to go on to university than students who grew up near a university, likely due to the added cost of moving away to attend, as opposed to differences in other factors (e.g., family income, parental education, academic achievement). When distant students are faced with a local option, however, their probability of attendance substantially increases. Specifically, the creation of a local degree-granting institution is associated with a 28.1% increase in university attendance among local youth, and large increases were registered in each city affected. However, the increase in university participation came at the expense of college participation in most cities. Furthermore, not everyone benefited equally from new universities. In particular, students from lower income families saw the largest increase in university participation, which is consistent with the notion that distance poses a financial barrier. Also, local aboriginal youth only saw a slight increase in university participation when faced with a local university option.

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Paper provided by Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch in its series Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series with number 2006283e.

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Date of creation: 25 Jan 2007
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Handle: RePEc:stc:stcp3e:2006283e
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  1. Corak, Miles & Lipps, Garth & Zhao, John, 2004. "Family Income and Participation in Post-Secondary Education," IZA Discussion Papers 977, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Frenette, Marc, 2003. "Access to College and University: Does Distance Matter?," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2003201e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
  3. Ana M. Ferrer & W. Craig Riddell, 2002. "The role of credentials in the Canadian labour market," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 35(4), pages 879-905, November.
  4. Marc Frenette, 2006. "Too Far to Go On? Distance to School and University Participation," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(1), pages 31-58.
  5. Frenette, Marc, 2005. "Is Post-secondary Access More Equitable in Canada or the United States?," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2005244e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
  6. Do, Chau, 2004. "The effects of local colleges on the quality of college attended," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 249-257, June.
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