US freshmen politically engaged, financially concerned

January 22, 2009

Nearly 90% of first-year US college students frequently or occasionally discussed politics in the last year, according to the latest installment of an annual survey from UCLA. Almost 40% of this year's freshmen said that keeping up with political affairs is "essential" or "very important," up from a record low of 28% in 2000. The survey also shows financial concerns dictate college choice. 17% of those accepted into their first-choice institution opted to attend a lower-choice school, mostly because of costs. A record 43% said financial aid offers were "very important" or "essential" in choosing where to attend. UCLA News Release | Inside Higher Ed | The Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription required) | Read the brief