I recently read something interesting from the book "Crazies to the Left of me, Wimps to the Right" by Bernard Goldberg. In it he quotes one of Clinton's advisors, William Galston who says that to avoid poverty you have to do three things:
Finish High School
Marry before having children
Marry after the age of 20
"Only 8% of people who do this, he says, wind up poor, while 79% who fail to do it end up in poverty."
Pretty interesting stuff if it's still holds true, and I suspect it is.