A recent New York Times article by Jacques Steinberg highlights a report recently released by the Center of Education and the Workforce at Georgetown University entitled, Help Wanted: Projections of Jobs and Education Requirements Through 2018.
The Help Wanted report, most notably, argues that some college education after high school is becoming more and more necessary for entry into the middle class. As evidence, the report states that the number of jobs requiring at least a two-year degree will outpace the number of people qualified to fill those positions by at least three million in 2018 (click here for a visual).
College education hasn't always been necessary in this country to find a good-paying job. The report, for example, shows that in 1970, about 75 percent of workers considered to be middle class didn't have education beyond high school. The workforce landscape has changed since, significantly so. In 2007, under 40 percent of workers considered to be middle class didn't have education beyond high school. And that percentage, according to the report, will continue to drop in the coming decade.
The Help Wanted authors conclude, "High school graduates and dropouts will find themselves largely left behind in the coming decade as employer demand for workers with postsecondary degrees continues to surge."
The moral? A college education is not simply a luxury - it's increasingly a necessity and a prerequisite for better earnings and a higher qualify of life.