The Indiana Chamber is in the midst of a process titled Indiana Vision 2025. As the name suggests, it’s a long-range economic development planning process for the state. It will guide the Chamber’s advocacy efforts and hopefully help the state move forward, no matter which political party might be in power.
A task force of statewide business and organization leaders makes for fascinating discussion at each meeting. Last week’s focus on higher education took the dialgoue up a notch, with guest presentations from Nicole Smith of the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce and Dewayne Matthews of the Lumina Foundation for Education.
Just a few of the many interesting highlights — ones that have to make you stop and think at least a little bit:
- Each year of training (either formal college education or improving adult skills in some way) leads to a 3% to 6% increase in gross domestic product
- When surveyed, 85% of eighth-graders and their parents state the young people plan to go to college. The actual number, of course, is far lower
- In 1973, 28% of jobs required at least some college education or better. In 2018, that number is projected to be 63%
- Low skill jobs that paid high wages are largely gone — and not coming back. "For the first time, the only way to get into the middle class is through education"
- In Indiana, 735,000 working-age adults have attended college but don’t have a degree
Like I said, just a few numbers and perspectives. Look for much, much more in the months ahead.