Searching to feel engaged': Finding purpose is key to success for students of color

CHICAGO TRIBUNE For some kids, answering that cliche “What do you want to be when you grow up” question is a nuisance. For some, it’s a chance to dream. And for still others, it’s a luxury often out of reach.

Studies show that having purpose in life — a sense of core goals, aims and direction — is beneficial for mental and physical health. But opportunities to find that purpose, to dream big and to determine what and who you want to be aren’t always distributed equally.

Research from Harvard UniversityBrown University and the U.S. Census Bureau found that children of color are more likely to face generational poverty and mass incarceration; and according to the Pew Research Center, kids of lower-income parents are less likely to participate in extracurricular activities. Such circumstances can add up, chipping away at the ability to explore passions and track down a purpose in life.

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