Economy Changed Freshmen's Plans but Didn't Shake Their Confidence:
Freshmen across the country also acknowledge the impact of the recession, with 62.1 percent saying the current economic situation had significantly affected their college choice. Compared with students who reported no effect, those who felt the pinch were almost as likely to have been accepted by their first-choice institutions (78 percent versus 80.3 percent), but notably less likely to have enrolled there (55.2 percent versus 68.8 percent).
Students who said the economy had changed their plans were less likely to be going to a college more than 100 miles away from home (43.8 percent versus 55.3 percent) and more likely to be living with family members (17.6 percent versus 11.4 percent). The unemployment rate of students' fathers, 4.9 percent, rose slightly over last year's mark, to the highest level since the survey began tracking the figure, in 1971. For mothers, the unemployment rate this year was also a record high, 8.6 percent.
Over all, students show reliance on multiple sources to pay for college, according to the report. More than half of freshmen reported using loans, and almost three-quarters said they'd received grants and scholarships, the highest proportion since the survey began asking that question, in 2001.