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dc.contributor.authorHill, Catharine B.en_US
dc.contributor.authorWinston, Gordon C.en_US
dc.description.abstractAll of the financial aid decisions at Williams College for the past fourteen years – nearly 14,000 of them – were used to see how much students actually paid for tuition,room, board, and fees to go to that highly selective and expensive school – their netprices. Williams practices need blind admission with full need-based financial aid andgives neither merit nor athletic scholarships – a family?s economic circumstances are theonly reason for a price adjustment. So these data can answer the motivating question ofthe study, ?Can highly able low income students reasonably aspire to go to the best andmost expensive colleges in the country?? Does need-blind admission and full needfinancial aid, in other words, really work to serve merit and equity at the same time?With income and net price data on all aided students and income data for familiesat the 95th and 99th percentiles of the US income distribution who pay the full stickerprice, we can describe the net price pattern across the whole student population as pricingpolicies have evolved at Williams (and similarly at other highly selective schools). Theend point – in the current academic year – sees a remarkable similarity in the shares ofincome paid for a year at Williams. Aided students across the five income quintiles pay,on average, 11% to 19% of their pretax family incomes – the lowest income quintilepaying the smallest share – while those at the 95th and 99th percentiles, paying full price,spend 21% and 9% of their family incomes, respectively, for a year at Williams. Oneusefully concrete number: the average student in the bottom twenty percent of the incomedistribution pays $1,683 while the full tuition is $32,470.en_US
dc.relation.ispartofseries|aWPEHE discussion paper series / Williams College, Williams Project on the Economics of Higher Education |x62en_US
dc.titleAccess: Net Prices, Affordability, and Equity At A Highly Selective Collegeen_US
dc.typeWorking Paperen_US

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