Denver, Co (KUSA) - Parents, if you're giving your college students a free ride, you might want to reconsider. Researchers have found that students whose parents are footing their entire college bill are the most likely to party, drink and use drugs.
The study was conducted by researchers Laura Padilla-Walker and Larry Nelson at Brigham Young University's School of Family Life. They surveyed more than 400 college students from across the country.
The researchers found that those who had everything provided for them, even spending money, were the most likely to party. Those students also had the least sense of "identity" when it came to what to major in or do after graduation.
On the other hand, the researchers say the students who had no financial help from their parents, may not have partied as much but they still struggled in school.
"In today's economy with the high cost of living and expenses, it's just hard to expect a child to do it on his or her own," Nelson said. "Even though it shows that they're partying less, those who have to do it all on their own, they're the most likely to drop out of college, not even finish and therefore have lower incomes as they start their careers."
From what they found, the researchers say the best approach is a team effort.
"The child has to be invested in his or her education," Nelson told 9NEWS. "They need to play a role, whether that's through getting and maintaining a scholarship or through working and paying some of their expenses, they need to be invested. They need to be taking a role and stepping up to this next phase of their life."
The researchers say they will conduct follow-up studies soon. They say if a student has to pay for some of their expenses, they will have a better sense of responsibility and a little less time to party.
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