Independent undergraduates: 1999-2000. Postsecondary education descriptive analysis report (NCES 2005-151)
This report provides a comprehensive look at independent students who were enrolled in postsecondary education in the United States and Puerto Rico in 1999–2000. Independent students are assumed to be financially self-sufficient and no longer dependent upon their parents to support them or finance their education. Many independent students work full time and attend community colleges or other postsecondary institutions that are geared toward career training in specialized fields such as health, technology, and business. Working, as many hours as they do, independent students are more likely to enroll in postsecondary institutions part time. They are less likely than dependent students to apply for financial aid, and are less likely to apply for it on time, or before the typical May 1 deadline for state and institutional aid. Among those who do apply for aid, independent students are less likely than dependent students to receive state and institutional grants, more likely to receive Pell Grants and, although they are less likely to take out student loans, the average amount they borrow is larger. Being married or having children are characteristics common to independent students, and while being married can raise one’s income, having children can increase one’s living expenses considerably.