White Paper-oaktree

Working Hypothesis 1: Students who overcame more obstacles in high school are more likely to excel in the workforce

Working Hypothesis 2: Public high school students are more likely to succeed later in life opposed to private high school students.

Purposeful Summaries


1. Realities of Mentoring High School Students from Inner City Public Schools vs. Private Schools in STEM Research at an R1 University:

The WISE program was initially for female, private school students to get exposure to STEM. Later, they opened this opportunity up to public school students too. There were big differences in the experience that the public and private school girls had. for example, the private school had more teachers available to help. Also public schools were not able to provide summer research opportunities since the majority of students work. Overall, both groups were positively impacted. Perhaps the public school students had to work harder/ more diligently to make this program fit into their lifestyle? Or possibly the factor of public vs private school had very little to no influence.


2. The problem with teaching ‘grit’ to poor kids? They already have it. Here’s what they really need.

For a long time its been believed that teaching grit and perseverance skills to under privileged kids will help them succeed. it seems that underprivileged kids do not need to be taught these skills since they are forced to perceiver everyday. Meanwhile, wealthy kids may never develop the same skill sets because of their overly comfortable lives. So basically, the kids growing up in poverty are more likely to develop grit and the kids from well off families are more likely to be lazy brats.


3. Participation in higher education online: Demographics, motivators, and grit.

A survery of students at Curtin University showed that students who were not the first in their family to go to college were more likely to display grit. Also, their biological parent’s level of education directly correlated to their own grit. This article essentially counters the one listed above it.

4. What Straight-A Students Get Wrong

Dr. Grant, organizational psychologist, explains that good grades can only get you so far. After your first year out of college there is almost no correlation between grades and job performance. “For example at google, once employees are two or three years out of college, their grades have no bearing on their performance.” The issue is that those who get good grades aren’t necessarily prepared for the workforce, they just know how to memorize information. Traditional schooling doesn’t evaluate creativity, problem solving ability, etc. Students in the top of the class are also more likely to miss out on social/real world experiences that may be more useful to them.


5. The effect of taking paid employment during term-time on student’s academic studies.

A survey of students at the Manchester metropolitan university demonstrated that more students than ever are working while in school. Although these students do believe their grades would be a little higher if they weren’t working, the benefits outweigh this. Students express the skills that they have acquired through working like understanding of business, social skills, and confidence. In conclusion, the small decrease in GPA won’t matter in the long run when you’ve earned real world experience through working.

6. https://childmind.org/article/how-to-help-kids-learn-to-fail/

Beth Arky with the Child Mind Institute explains how constantly helping your child to succeed is hurting them in the long run. At a young age, children need to learn how to accept failure. If they don’t do this, challenges in the future will be extremely hard to overcome

7. https://www.businessinsider.com/why-good-students-fail-in-life-2013-4

Getting good grades in high school and college does not always guarantee your job someday will be a breeze. In an article for the Harvard Business Review, Whitney Johnson explains the difference between a good employee and a great employee. This difference has a lot to do with how the education system shapes us. Students are trained to do only what they’re told and not think outside the box. This doesn’t translate well into the workforce.


Current State of Research Paper

So far I’m pretty confident in my ability to find sources. I still am considering both thesis’s but believe I may take it more to the challenges= success in workplace. The “challenges” I’m referring to could be anything from poor grades to poverty.

Topics for Smaller Papers


Misunderstanding that “private” schools automatically equal higher education and harder working students.


Growing up in less than favorable conditions causes individual to develop grit.


It’s observed that students are more likely to attend college if their parents did. This does not demonstrate that kids with stable homes are more successful, simply that their family is well-off.

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