This brief explores the opportunities and current limitations of using 529 savings plans to ensure that the greatest number of Americans are able to pursue a post-secondary education. Particular attention is given to considering the potential for 529 savings plans to serve as a basis for universal asset building. As these plans are still relatively new, this assessment builds on what has been learned to date. We conclude with a series of policy recommendations designed to strengthen the ability of these accounts and savings plans to facilitate greater access to post-secondary education, one of the most significant assets of our time.
Project: College Success
Clancy, M., Cramer, R., & Parrish, L. (2005, February). Section 529 savings plans, access to post-secondary education, and universal asset building (New America Foundation Issue Brief No. 7). Washington, DC: New America Foundation and Washington University, Center for Social Development.