The top performer on this measure is the University of Virginia, with a grad rate of 93 percent for Pell recipients, according to a Washington Post analysis of federal data made public Thursday.
Thirty-three of these prominent state schools have Pell grad rates of 50 percent or lower. And the vast majority — 97 percent — have lower Pell grad rates than overall grad rates. Sometimes the gap is quite wide. At the University of Kansas, the six-year grad rate is 63 percent. But for Pell students, it is 48 percent. The university declined to comment.
Below is The Post’s analysis of the data in a sortable chart. A couple of caveats: These grad rates reflect only students who entered a given university as first-time, full-time freshmen in 2010 and graduated with a bachelor’s degree at the same school. They do not include part-time or transfer students. Also, some universities have far more Pell students than others. A relatively small share of freshmen at U-Va. qualify for Pell grants — 12 percent. At the University of California at Berkeley, the share is 23 percent. At the University of Memphis, it’s 49 percent.