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Abstract

This article investigates the consequences of employment on college students' academic performance and their success in the labor market after leaving school. A nationally representative longitudinal data set of 1980 high school graduates is used to compare the grade point averages, dropout rates, and postcollege wages and employment rates of students who worked while in school and those who did not. The article concludes that employment is a mixed blessing for college students. While working students are more likely to dropout than nonworking students, they also tend to do better in the labor market if they do graduate. Employment does not have a strong effect on students' grades.

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