APLUS Wave 3: Transitioning to Adulthood in Rough Economic Terrain

The majority of young adults are struggling to achieve financial security in their transition from college to adulthood, according to the latest report from a longitudinal study. Now in its 6th year, Arizona Pathways to Life Success for University Students (APLUS), an investigation at the University of Arizona that follows young adults from their college years to the workforce, is discovering how this time of passage affects financial attitudes, behaviors and overall well-being.

New findings from Wave 3.0 of APLUS, co-funded by the National Endowment for Financial Education and the Citi Foundation, show that 50 percent of the more than 1,000 participants continue to rely on their family for financial support after finishing school—including nearly half (49 percent) of those who are employed full time. Researchers note that it’s this financial instability that is interfering with young adults’ ability to achieve financial goals such as paying off student debt, making major purchases, buying a home and saving.

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