updated 5/18/2011 3:47:34 PM ET 2011-05-18T19:47:34

PROVIDENCE, R.I., May 18, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- States across the nation continue to debate whether to grant in-state college tuition rates for non-citizen, long-term residents. Today during a news conference at the Rhode Island State House, the Latino Policy Institute at Roger Williams University revealed findings from its report analyzing the effects of in-state college tuition for non-citizens in states implementing such legislation.

"The Effects of In-State Tuition for Non-Citizens: A Systematic Review of the Evidence" is the first rigorous systematic review of original research on in-state tuition legislation and the first to apply such research in a way that predicts the potential impact of in-state tuition on the state of Rhode Island.
Key findings of the report include:

  • In-state tuition is significantly correlated with a 31% increase in non-citizen enrollment rates at institutes of higher education.
     
  • In-state tuition is significantly correlated with a 14% decrease in non-citizen high school dropout rates.
     
  • Empirical evidence confirms that two previously published reports produced by anti-immigration groups on in-state legislation used biased calculations that make several incorrect conclusions on the alleged costs of such legislation.

According to the report, in-state tuition legislation in Rhode Island could result in 24 more non-citizen, long-term residents attending college at R.I. public universities each year. Using current tuition rates the report finds these students would contribute over $162,000 in revenue over instructional expenses per year. The report also finds that in-state tuition legislation could result in 71 more non-citizen high school graduates in Rhode Island per year.

"Historically, debates around in-state tuition legislation have centered on emotional decisions rather than comprehensive analysis," said Kimberly Mehlman-Orozco, director of the Latino Policy Institute at Roger Williams University. "Providing citizens the opportunity to make more informed decisions results in better evidence-based policies. This is the first report that systematically reviews the evidence on the effects of in-state tuition and we hope will encourage further research in this area."
    
The full report is available online at: http://www.rwu.edu/depository/lpi/lpi-report.pdf .

As a follow up to this study, the Latino Policy Institute at Roger Williams University is planning to conduct a longitudinal study on the long-term economic effects of in-state tuition.

Ruth Bazinet

Director of Media Relations and Social Media

rbazinet@rwu.edu

(401) 254-3805

About LPI at RWU: The Latino Policy Institute at Roger Williams University is a research organization committed to generating and communicating non-partisan data of Latinos in Rhode Island. The LPI stimulates public policy discourse and enhances the public's understanding of the Rhode Island Latino experience. With this information, Latinos' social, economic and civic contributions to the state can be better documented and understood.

About RWU: Roger Williams University is a leading independent, coeducational liberal arts university at which students live and learn to be global citizens. With 41 academic programs and an array of co-curricular activities on its Bristol, R.I., campus, RWU is committed to its mantra of learning to bridge the world. In the last decade, the University has achieved unprecedented academic and financial successes and continues to be recognized by U.S. News & World Report as one of the top ten educational institutions in its class.

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