Five Ways Increasing Multicultural Enrollment Helps the Economy

Sep 19, 13 Five Ways Increasing Multicultural Enrollment Helps the Economy

By Cassandra Bremer, Content Manager and Developer and Troy Pritchard, Junior Executive- San Jose Group

College campuses around the country often house the most multicultural and diverse communities in the U.S. As summer comes to a close, colleges nationwide have begun welcoming students back to campuses for the fall semester, now more diverse than ever as multicultural enrollment continues to steadily increase. During the 1980s, when marketers first realized the emerging multicultural market, Latino education grew by 60.7% according to Manuel Zamarripa’s “Education.” Last year, Hispanic high school graduate’s fall semester college enrollment was a record-high 69%, while non-Hispanic whites’ enrollment dropped to 67%, reports a 2012 Pew Research Center analysis. As young multicultural adults plan to earn college degrees, their lives as well as the economy will see vast improvements. Here are five ways increasing multicultural enrollment can help the economy.

1. Increased spending power

Americans with bachelor’s degrees make 84% more over a lifetime than high school graduates, reports a recent Georgetown University study. On average, a college graduate will earn $2.3 million over a lifetime compared to high school graduate’s $1.3 million. Multicultural college enrollment means higher earning potential, making them powerful consumer markets. Some companies have already started marketing towards different multicultural markets in pursuit of their increasing spending power (Hispanics will have a $1.5 trillion spending power by 2015).

2. Dynamic consumers

Healthy economies depend on active consumers. Educated consumer bases not increase the per capita earning, but consumers begin to spend their money in different sectors of the GDP including housing, insurance, automotive, retail, education and entertainment. As multicultural dollars stimulate different sectors of the GDP with their increasing spending power, the economy strengthens.

3. Increased need for technological devices

The Unite States, home of “the largest and most technologically powerful economy in the world” according to the CIA’s World Fact Book, depends on the technology industry to help drive a strong economy. In 2008, the information and communication technology expenditure in the U.S. accounted for 7.36% of the GDP. As the U.S. culture becomes increasingly mobile, laptops, smartphones and tablets (as well as their software) are necessities for people pursuing higher education and busy professional careers. Already leaders in mobile spending, multicultural enrollment will only increase with the demand for these devices.

4. More responsible loans and investments

Several analysts attribute the economic recession, at least in part, to irresponsible investments and loans. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the rate of foreclosure between 2007 and 2010 was over twice as high for high school graduates than for college graduates. Additionally, the Institute for Financial Literacy reported that 14% of the people who filed for bankruptcy in 2010 held college degrees while over 36% of bankruptcy filers obtained only high school diplomas.

5. Decrease in government spending

As the national approaches its debt ceiling of $16.7 trillion and government spending on dependency programs increasing to upwards of 70% of the total federal spending, the government looks for ways to alleviate taxpayer pressures. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate drops from 8.3% to 6.2% when comparing high school graduates to college graduates respectively. Therefore, college graduates are less likely to utilize public funds and contribute to the national deficit. More so, as taxpayers, they will help further stimulate the economy.

“The Hispanic market values education, and education only increases their market value,” said George L. San Jose, president and chief creative officer at The San Jose Group. “Increased college enrollment points to an even stronger and powerful market.”

As the country continues to emerge from the economic recession, watch for multicultural market trends, and see how they are attributing to the strengthening American economy.

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