Press Releases

National Survey Reveals High School And College Student Optimism About Future, Economy, Jobs Market
Though Not Happy About Prospects of More Virtual Learning

ATLANTA, May 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- A new survey of more than 2,000 college and high school students, the "Student Voices of America Survey" conducted by the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS), reveals overwhelming optimism and hope.

Strikingly, more than 80% of the 2000 respondents stated being "Very" or "Pretty" hopeful about the health of their family and friends (82%), their ability to achieve a college education (94%), graduate on time (86%), and secure a job (83%). 

When asked how they would feel if their schools were still online in the fall, a third of the students (32%) said they would rather not attend school. Roughly half (53%) said they prefer in-person classes but could deal with e-learning.

A racially and economically diverse mix of high school and college students from all 50 states responded to 10 questions about their outlook on their education, the economy, the well-being of their families and friends, and their futures in light of COVID-19. The resounding sentiment is one of hopefulness and optimism in spite of the pandemic.

"This survey overwhelmingly speaks to the optimism and hope that our nation's students feel during what is typically an unrivaled time of accomplishment and joy with physical graduations, speeches, proms, sporting events, and special times with friends," said James Lewis, president of National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS). "In spite of these great losses, the survey affirms our youths' belief in the future and their continued journey toward achievement and personal growth."

While 54% of the students surveyed are "Not so Hopeful" or "Hopeless" about the overall U.S. economy, 68% report they are either "Very Hopeful" or "Pretty Hopeful" about our nation's ability to overcome COVID-19.

Most students expect to be able to socialize in person again by the end of August (63%) and anticipate that things will be back to normal by the end of the year (55%). Yet, 41% don't see a return to normalcy until sometime in 2021 or 2022.

NSHSS also asked students to share positive things that have come out of this crisis. "Spending quality time with family," "learning new skills," "positive effects on the environment," "sleep," and "self-care" stood out among their responses.

In addition, this Saturday, May 23, 2020, NSHSS is hosting a free "Scholar Up: NSHSS Virtual Conference" which will include workshops, a virtual college & career fair, and question & answer sessions available to high school students for 24 hours. At a time when students can't visit colleges or have face to face time with potential employers, NSHSS is creating an online environment (including video, audio, and text chats LIVE between 1-5 p.m. ET) where students can converse with over 30 top universities and companies and walk away with tangible resources and newfound knowledge to help them apply to the college of their dreams or land their ideal internship. 

Survey Methodology:
The NSHSS Student Voices of America Survey was distributed to high school and college age students nationwide who are active members of NSHSS. The survey was open for one week from Saturday, April 18, 2020 to Sunday, April 26, 2020, during which time more than 2,000 students responded to the questions.

About National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS):
NSHSS is the premier international honors and scholarship program co-founded by Claes Nobel, the senior member of the Nobel Prize family, and James Lewis. NSHSS offers a lifetime of benefits, pairing the highest performing students worldwide with high school and college scholarships, events, connections, internships, and career opportunities that begin in high school and carry on through college and careers. For more information, visit the official website of NSHSS.

SOURCE National Society of High School Scholars

For further information: For the complete data set with graphs, and to interview NSHSS President Jim Lewis, please contact Terese Kelly Greer at 201-843-5600, ext. 206,

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