Despite Working Longer, Minority Students’ Grades Remain Stable


Hispanic students are more likely to work longer hours when holding a job while attending school, compared to non-Hispanic white students with a job.
VOXXI is reporting that according to research from Jerald Bachman, Ph.D., of the University of Michigan, however, minority students have more stable grades compared to non-Hispanic whites and Asian-Americans working the same exact hours.
While non-Hispanic white students (72 percent of 12th graders) were more likely to have jobs during the school year when compared to Hispanics (59 percent) and African Americans (57 percent), approximately 32 percent of Hispanics and African Americans with a job worked longer hours that topped more than 25 hours a week.
The more hours that a non-Hispanic white student worked, the more their GPA suffered, but there was no correlation found for minority students.
Researchers say that it is possible that job availability has something to do with this. Traditionally minority students live in poorer urban neighborhoods, and since employment is more difficult to find, they are more likely to stick with a job and work whatever is required of them in order to succeed.
“Arguably, affluent kids have the least need to work during their student days,” said Bachman. “When they do work, they seem to suffer more in terms of grades and substance use.”
While GPAs may not suffer for Hispanics and African Americans, Bachman advises students to avoid holding jobs that demand a lot of long hours, regardless of ethnic background. According to Bachman, students working long hours during school year tend to develop behavioral problems, not only academic ones.
An additional finding indicates that minority students who hold a job are less likely to become involved in behaviors such as smoking and underage drinking compared to non-Hispanic white or Asian students that work longer hours.
Bachman said, “Ideally young adults that attend school should work up to 15 hours a week, as it is indicated by the study data.”
Photo (c)  jgope via Flickr