Washington, D.C., Austin, TX (March 8, 2016)—In the midst of an election season driven by fiery debate over opportunity, success, and what it means to “win” in America, The Atlantic Media/Pearson Opportunity Poll, released today, reveals that a strong majority of Americans believe they would get better and higher paying jobs if they obtained more skills; but they also see barriers -- mostly financial-- in their way. Despite popular campaign rhetoric, most whites, Hispanics, and Asians broadly rate their opportunities for employment as equal to, or better than, other Americans; only 8% of white respondents believe they have worse access to employment opportunities compared to other groups. African Americans have an opposite view: 55% of those polled believe they have worse access to opportunity than other groups. The Atlantic’s “Next America” project is reporting the results of the poll beginning today with the first
in a series of articles, "What Do Americans Believe Will Help Them Get Ahead?" Full results will be posted later this morning and further coverage and analysis of the key findings will be published throughout the week.
Among ethnic groups, Hispanics express the most concern about their skill levels, with only 33% feeling they have above-average skills; Asian Americans and African Americans also register more concern than whites. Looking over a ten-year period, a majority of Hispanics (51%) say they are concerned their skills could be obsolete. The poll found that blacks and Hispanics are more likely than whites and Asians to say they could obtain a better job with more education and training.