Thursday, July 17, 2014

E-News: How Young Adults are Doing

July 17, 2014  Subscribe

Young Adults
Last week, the Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics issued a report describing the well-being of America's young adults. Here are some highlights, with supplemental information from Child Trends' DataBank and blog.

Now, most young women who have children are unmarried (86 percent of births to women 18-19, and 65 percent to those 20-24, in 2012), reflecting the fact that most young adults are unmarried. Birth rates for young women (18-24) are at a historic low, though. According to the DataBank, more than four in ten births overall are to unmarried women. Most unmarried births now occur to cohabiting parents.

Our blog post this week highlights that the rate of childbearing among U.S. teens 15-19 is also at a historic low. This drop is good news for these teens as they enter early adulthood; for women, having a child as a teen is associated with reduced educational attainment and an elevated risk of poverty. See the blog for more nuance.

The percentage of young adults who've attained higher levels of education has increased gradually, though the cost of college and the percentage of young adults in debt to pay for it are also up. Well-educated young adults are good news for their current and future children, as higher levels of parental educational attainment are linked to positive outcomes for children, the DataBank says.

Leisure Time
More young adults are getting the amount of leisure-time physical activity recommended by federal guidelines, though the percentage meeting these guidelines was still only 30 percent in 2011-12. This is lower than the percentage of their younger counterparts (12th graders) who participated in school athletics in 2011; according to the DataBank, that number was 56 percent.

Welcoming shining new scholars
The National Research Center on Hispanic Children & Families is excited to welcome our inaugural summer fellows, all Ph.D. candidates studying issues related to this population. They're each working on a project for the Center. Marta Alvira-Hammond, of Bowling Green State University, is studying how emerging (versus traditional) Hispanic communities are equipped to support low-income families. Arya Ansari, of the University of Texas, is examining how early care and education experiences equip Hispanic children for school success. Henry Gonzalez, of the University of Arizona, is studying the influence of fathers and father-figures on Hispanic children. Henry is also working on a concept paper that covers the intersection of the research literature on Hispanic boys and young men and President Obama's "My Brother's Keeper" initiative. Visit the Center on LinkedIn!
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