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NBER Working Papers and Publications
|February 2006||Cost Should Be No Barrier: An Evaluation of the First Year of Harvard's Financial Aid Initiative|
with Christopher Avery, Caroline Hoxby, Clement Jackson, Kaitlin Burek, Glenn Pope: w12029
This paper evaluates the first year of Harvard's Financial Aid Initiative, which increased aid and recruiting for students from low income backgrounds. Using rich data from the Census and administrative sources, we estimate family incomes for the vast major of plausible applicants from the U.S. We find that the Initiative had a significant effect almost entirely because it attracted a pool of applicants that was larger and slightly poorer. It appears that very similar standards of admission were used for this group as had been used in previous years. This group, once admitted, enrolled at a rate very similar to that of previous years. Thus, there are a greater number of low income students in the Class of 2009 than in the Class of 2008 simply because more well-qualified, low income student...