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“I Know What’s at Stake:” How Homelessness Impacts College Success in New York City

New York City is in the midst of an educational crisis: the increasing share of students experiencing homelessness. Today, one out of every ten students enrolled in New York City’s public schools lacks a reliable, safe place to sleep at night. The city’s youth homelessness crisis does not, of course, end with high school. As young people enter into college, the challenge of homelessness remains far too common. A 2019 Hope Center survey of 22,000 City University of New York undergraduates found that 14 percent had experienced homelessness while enrolled in classes. More than half of the survey’s respondents experienced some form of housing insecurity over the last year.

To better understand the challenges that young New Yorkers face when navigating college and unstable housing, Young Invincibles spoke with more than 60 young adults across New York City. Our report, “I Know What’s at Stake”: How Homelessness Impacts College Success in New York City, examine the barriers these young people outlined, along with insights from leading researchers, service providers, and government officials. We also share recommendations to increase college access and success for students experiencing homelessness in New York City — recommendations that cities, states, and institutions across the country can use when addressing the growing crisis of college student homelessness. 

Want to get involved with the movement to end homelessness on New York’s college campuses? Sign the pledge today.

Read the Executive Summary & Recommendations

Read the Full Report