June 14 Capitol Hill Forum: College Match Matters


On June 14, 12:00-1:30 pm, the American Youth Policy Forum and MDRC are cosponsoring a Capitol Hill forum, “College Match Matters,” which will provide an overview of the research conducted by MDRC on the promising College Match Program in Chicago Public Schools, as well as a panel discussion on the implications for policy, specifically considering opportunities for sustainability and scaling up. 

In 2009, only 36 percent of youth in the United States ages 18-24 were enrolled in college, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Of those who managed to navigate the system and gain access to higher education, only 53 percent attending four-year institutions were able to graduate within six years. While many factors contribute to low rates of postsecondary enrollment and graduation, too many low-income, college-ready students are “undermatching” — enrolling in colleges for which they are academically overqualified or not going to college at all. Research suggests that students are most likely to succeed and graduate when they attend the most academically demanding institution that will admit them.

The College Match Program was designed to respond to the undermatching problem by encouraging academically capable students to choose colleges where they are likely to thrive and graduate. College Match proactively delivers crucial information, supports students as they navigate the complicated college and financial aid application process, and helps students and parents make thoughtful decisions about college enrollment.

Presenters at the June 14 forum will include:

  • D. Crystal Byndloss, Senior Associate, MDRC
  • Michael McPherson, President, Spencer Foundation
  • Greg Darnieder, Senior Advisor to the Secretary of Education on the College Access Initiative, U.S. Department of Education
  • Mariana Saucedo, College Match Adviser, DeVry Advantage Academy High School and Lincoln Park High School 

Register online for this forum.