The Effects of the Kalamazoo Promise Scholarship on College Enrollment, Persistence, and Completion

65 Pages Posted: 30 Jun 2015 Last revised: 21 Dec 2017

See all articles by Timothy Bartik

Timothy Bartik

W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research

Brad Hershbein

W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research

Marta Lachowska

W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research; Stockholm University - Department of Economics

Date Written: June 29, 2015

Abstract

We estimate the effects on postsecondary education outcomes of the Kalamazoo Promise, a generous place-based college scholarship. We identify Promise effects using difference-in-differences, comparing eligible to ineligible graduates before and after the Promise’s initiation. According to our estimates, the Promise significantly increases college enrollment, college credits attempted, and credential attainment. Stronger effects occur for minorities and women. Predicted lifetime earnings effects of the Promise’s credential gains, compared to the Promise’s scholarship costs, represent an internal rate of return of 11.3 percent. Based on our results, simple and generous scholarships can significantly increase educational attainment and provide net economic benefits.

Keywords: place-based scholarship, enrollment, college completion, natural experiment, difference-in-differences, education policy

JEL Classification: I21, I22, I24

Suggested Citation

Bartik, Timothy and Hershbein, Brad and Lachowska, Marta, The Effects of the Kalamazoo Promise Scholarship on College Enrollment, Persistence, and Completion (June 29, 2015). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2624727 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2624727

Timothy Bartik (Contact Author)

W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research ( email )

300 South Westnedge Avenue
Kalamazoo, MI 49007-4686
United States

Brad Hershbein

W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research ( email )

Marta Lachowska

W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research ( email )

300 South Westnedge Avenue
Kalamazoo, MI 49007-4686
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.upjohn.org/AboutUs/Staff/Lachowska

Stockholm University - Department of Economics ( email )

Stockholm University
Stockholm, 10691
Sweden

HOME PAGE: http://www2.sofi.su.se/~mla/

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