NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

College Graduates Struggling for Financial Independence

June 13, 2014

Half of the graduates from the University of Arizona still rely on their families for financial support two years out of college. Relying on their families for financial support after college has caused graduates to postpone life goals, such as getting married, having children or buying a home, reports CNN.

The University of Arizona tracked over 1,000 of its own students that entered college in 2007, following them for five years. According to the study:

  • Twenty-eight percent of respondents reported that getting married is not an important life goal for them, and 27 percent said that having children is also not important to them.
  • Nineteen percent of graduates reported that owning a home was not important.
  • Stunningly, 16 percent of the respondents said that living on their own was unimportant.
  • Only 300 of the 1,000 students surveyed said that they were completely self-sufficient two years after graduating from college.
  • Just 49 percent of graduates reported working full-time, and half of those working full-time still rely on their families for support.

Graduates are also pursuing idealistic career goals over financial ones. The majority of respondents reported that working within their area of interest was the most important factor in career satisfaction. Working at a company with a 401(k) matching program, on the other hand, ranked as least important.

While 91 percent of graduates cite financial independence as a life goal, they have a long way before that dream becomes a reality.

Source: Blake Ellis, "Half of College Grads Still Relying on Parents' Money," CNN Money, June 10, 2014.


Browse more articles on Economic Issues