Closing the Degree Gap: The West’s Contributions

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This Policy Insight is a supplement to WICHE’s annual Benchmarks indicators, which summarize the West states’ progress with improving access to, success in, and financing of higher education. In this brief, we explore one variant for how WICHE states might meet projected educational attainment goals, such as the 60 percent by 2025 goal set by the Lumina Foundation. In particular, we explore what it would take for the Western region as a whole to meet this goal rather than each state individually, allowing for the possibility that some West states may achieve a higher level and for others it might not be feasible to reach 60 percent of their population having a high-quality postsecondary credential, because of substantial variation among states' current levels of educational attainment and projected population change over time.

This issue of Policy Insights was prepared by Patrick Kelly of the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems (NCHEMS).