Matching Items (6)

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Effect of a Local Labor Demand Shock on Postsecondary Education Enrollment

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A growing number of jobs in the US require a college degree or technical education, and the wage difference between jobs requiring a high school diploma and a college education

A growing number of jobs in the US require a college degree or technical education, and the wage difference between jobs requiring a high school diploma and a college education has increased to over $17,000 per year. Enrollment levels in postsecondary education have been rising for at least the past decade, and this paper attempts to tease out how much of the increasing enrollment is due to changes in the demand by companies for workers. A Bartik Instrument, which is a measure of local area labor demand, for each county in the US was constructed from 2007 to 2014, and using multivariate linear regression the effect of changing labor demand on local postsecondary education enrollment rates was examined. A small positive effect was found, but the effect size in relation to the total change in enrollment levels was diminutive. From the start to the end of the recession (2007 to 2010), Bartik Instrument calculated unemployment increased from 5.3% nationally to 8.2%. This level of labor demand contraction would lead to a 0.42% increase in enrollment between 2008 and 2011. The true enrollment increase over this period was 7.6%, so the model calculated 5.5% of the enrollment increase was based on the changes in labor demand.

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Date Created
  • 2016-05

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The Signaling Effect of College Quality to Employers

Description

Upon hiring a new college graduate, employers are left with limited information about the true productivity of the individual, mainly based on the information provided via resume and other related

Upon hiring a new college graduate, employers are left with limited information about the true productivity of the individual, mainly based on the information provided via resume and other related documents. Based on the information, which may include (and is not limited to) education years, grade point average(s), the institution one attended, majors, etc., employers attempt to differentiate between the candidates. Existing employer learning literature, such as Altonji and Pierret (2001) and Peter Arcidiacono, Patrick Bayer, and Aurel Hizmo (2010), have found that employers statistically discriminate upon hiring and estimate wages based on expected productivity conditional to observable characteristics--specifically education. As one's work experience accumulates, the wages are adjusted to the newly learned characteristics correlated with productivity. Thus, college graduates are more appealing as job candidates than high school graduates, with little learning done with experience in the labor market as employers have a more accurate depiction on productivity with more education years. With rising demands for high-skilled labor, there is a growing interest on what employers learn about from the name of the college listed on one's resume, as varying ability students sort into varying quality colleges. I include a one-dimensional index of college quality, as similarly constructed by Eleanor Dillon and Jeffrey Smith (2015), to measure the effects of attending a highly-selective institution in predicting individual ability. This paper provides additional support for the employer learning model on college graduates, with an emphasis on the direct role that college quality has at the start of one's career. Although college quality appears to be influential in providing employers additional information on one's productivity, unlike education, the weight placed on it by employers does not change with experience in the labor market. I further investigate within the college market and provide possible explanations behind learning on the basis of college quality, including: the possibility of information explained by quality unrelated to one's ability and the effects of attending a highly selective college.

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Date Created
  • 2016-05

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An Analysis of Bias in Competitive Academic Debate

Description

Through collection of survey data on the characteristics of college debaters, disparities in participation and success for women and racial and ethnic minorities are measured. This study then uses econometric

Through collection of survey data on the characteristics of college debaters, disparities in participation and success for women and racial and ethnic minorities are measured. This study then uses econometric tools to assess whether there is an in-group judging bias in college debate that systematically disadvantages female and minority participants. Debate is used as a testing ground for competing economic theories of taste-based and statistical discrimination, applied to a higher education context. The study finds persistent disparities in participation and success for female participants. Judges are more likely to vote for debaters who share their gender. There is also a significant disparity in the participation of racial and ethnic minority debaters and judges, as well as female judges.

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Date Created
  • 2014-12

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Economic Recessions and the Returns to Higher Education

Description

A recession at the time of high school graduation could place multiple and competing pressures on a student deciding between entering the labor force and going to college. A recession

A recession at the time of high school graduation could place multiple and competing pressures on a student deciding between entering the labor force and going to college. A recession may lower opportunity costs, increasing college enrollment and depressing the college wage premium; a downturn may also restrict enrollment to only those with sufficient family resources to pay for it. In the event that either of these illustrations holds true, recessions would seem to result in an adverse, exogenous welfare impact. This paper examines the extent to which recessions at the time of high school graduation affect students' likelihood of enrolling in college and then looks at the long-term earnings effects these early-life recessions carry. I first describe the choice between entering a volatile labor market and enrolling in higher education that faces 18-year-old high school graduates during a recession. For my analysis, I use data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics to study the effects recessions have on high school graduates' decision-making. I then develop a model using these same data to compare the college wage premiums for individuals treated and untreated by a recession at the time of high school graduation. I find that recessions result in an economically significant uptick in college enrollment. However, the college wage premium for those who enroll in a recession is not statistically different from that witnessed by enrollees in better economic climates. Nonetheless, those young people who enter college during a recession may witness an economically appreciable earnings premium over and above the typical college premium. I conclude by exploring the significance of these findings and reflect on their seemingly contradictory implications.

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Date Created
  • 2015-05

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Corrosion of the US Steel Industry: Macroeconomic Competition and Productivity

Description

The US steel industry experienced a great decline between 1950-1985. Influenced by several government policies, the industry was first cartelized during the great depression and then subjected to an extremely

The US steel industry experienced a great decline between 1950-1985. Influenced by several government policies, the industry was first cartelized during the great depression and then subjected to an extremely powerful organized labor force. Due to high demand between and during WWII and the Korean War, the industry expanded capacity using existing technologies. Simultaneously, organized labor was able to secure increased wages and large severance costs for firms that decided to shutdown existing steel mills. In the post war years this prevented firms from innovating through investing in newer, more efficient, technologies. Eventually US steel firms had no advantage against foreign producers who could produce steel cheaper and more efficiently.

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Date Created
  • 2013-05

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Effects of a Widespread Union in NCAA Football

Description

With the National Labor Relations Board's decision to allow Northwestern University football players to unionize, the landscape of college athletics is changing very quickly. Due to their recognition as employees

With the National Labor Relations Board's decision to allow Northwestern University football players to unionize, the landscape of college athletics is changing very quickly. Due to their recognition as employees of the University, football players at Northwestern will receive many benefits that they would not have received before. They will be able to bargain for the things they want including: scholarships that cover the cost of attendance, increased medical coverage, measures to increase graduation rates, a safer game, and due process with the NCAA. However, this will come at a cost to the general welfare. Subsidies to athletic departments will continue to rise on college campuses due to the increasing costs of athletics and that cost will be incurred regressively on students. With an outcry from students, universities may be forced to stop the increase in subsidies, which may force some athletic departments to cut certain sports according to some parameters set by government legislation and the NCAA.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015-05