When Poor Students Attend Rich Schools: Do Affluent Social Environments Increase or Decrease Participation?
College is a key pathway to political participation, and lower-income individuals especially stand to benefit from it given their lower
political participation. However, rising inequality makes college disproportionately more accessible to high-income students. One
consequence of inequality is a prevalence of predominantly affluent campuses. Colleges are thus not insulated from the growing
concentration of affluence in American social spaces. We ask how affluent campus spaces affect college’s ability to equalize political
participation. Predominantly affluent campuses may create participatory norms that especially elevate low-income students’
participation. Alternatively, they may create affluence-centered social norms that marginalize these students, depressing their