Without college, Ohio workers get left behind

(Photo Supplied/Ohio News Service)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WOWO/Ohio News Service): Ohio’s high school graduation rate continues to improve, but a new study shows a high school diploma just isn’t enough in the post-recession job market.

According to the study from the Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce, since the recession ended, 8.4 million of the jobs created have gone to people with at least a bachelor’s degree, but only 80,00 went to workers with a high school diploma or less.

By contrast, Center Director Anthony Carnevale says through the early 1980s, 70 percent of American workers had no more than a high school diploma, and half were dropouts.

“We’ve crossed a line in the United States where, in order to get ahead, you really do need some kind of education or training beyond high school,” he states.

This year, for the first time ever, a higher percentage of the workforce has a college degree than those with a high school diploma or less.

About 88 percent of Ohioans graduate from high school, and 24 percent earn a bachelor’s degree, but the cost of a college education has skyrocketed in recent years, trapping many people in a sort of economic “catch-22.”

Carnivale adds he feels the only thing more expensive than going to college now, is not going to college.

“On average, you’ll lose a cool million dollars over your career if you don’t have a college degree, but at the same time, college is increasingly not affordable for a larger and larger share of Americans.”

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