Movin’ On Up: Mobility Rates of African-American College Graduates

In the 2000 to 2005 period, slightly more than a third of the adult white population of the United States moved from one residence to another. But blacks in the United States have been more likely to move than whites. From 2000 to 2005, nearly 39 percent of adult African Americans moved from one residence to another.

When we factor in educational attainment, we discover some interesting differences between blacks and whites. Nearly 40 percent of black adults who graduated from high school but had no college experience moved in the 2000 to 2005 period. For whites, less than 30 percent of similarly educated adults moved.

For college graduates, both blacks and whites are slightly more likely to have moved than their respective population as a whole. But the racial gap in moving rates almost entirely disappears. For adult blacks with a college degree, 40.3 percent moved in the five-year period. For white college graduates, 39.7 percent changed residences. Blacks and whites with a graduate or professional degree also had almost identical rates of mobility.

It appears that for highly educated blacks, employment and housing opportunities are now equal to those of similarly educated whites. Therefore, their rates of mobility tend to converge.