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The Chronicle of Higher Education Almanac of Higher Education for 2019-20 says the United States hosts 4,312 schools of higher education as defined by the Carnegie Classifications of Institutions of Higher Education. In the Midwest, there are 806 institutions of higher education, and Wisconsin ranks in the middle whether looking at 4-year public, 4-year private nonprofit, 4-year for-profit, or 2-year public.
|STATE||Number of Schools||4-year Public||4-Year Private, Non-profit||4-year For-profit||2-year Public||2-year Private Nonprofit||2-year For-profit|
The “Midwest” is defined many ways, but for the purposes of this analysis it includes Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin. An analysis excluding the Dakotas but including Nebraska and Pennsylvania would yield similar results, with Wisconsin being in the middle. It should be noted that only that half of the states in the Midwest (Iowa, Minnesota, North and South Dakota) have a projected increase in the number of new high school graduates, the remaining Midwest states all have a decline in young people, and nationwide it is projected there will be a 4.1% decrease in the number of new high school graduates by 2029-30. Currently in the United States, the largest age group is the 25-44 age bracket, capturing 26.4% of the population. The next largest bracket is 45-64 years old at 25.9%.
|STATE||State Population (Rank)||Per Capita Income (Rank)||Poverty Rate||New High School Graduates Estimated for 2019-20 (Projected change 2019-20 – 2029-30)||18- to 24- year-Olds Enrolled in College|
|Iowa||3,145,711 (30)||$30,865 (26)||10.7%||34,980 (1.4%)||45.2%|
|Illinois||12,802,023 (6)||$34,196 (15)||12.6%||143,205 (-12.7%)||42.7%|
|Indiana||6,666,818 (17)||$28,323 (40)||13.5%||72,241 (-6.3%)||40.9%|
|Michigan||9,962,311 (10)||$30,488 (27)||14.2%||99,993 (-12.9%)||44.5%|
|Minnesota||5,576,606 (22)||$36,156 (11)||9.5%||61,506 (0.9%)||42.5%|
|North Dakota||755,393 (47)||$34,041 (16)||10.3%||7,901 (40.6%)||42.8%|
|Ohio||11,658,609 (7)||$30,038 (30)||14.4%||119,507 (-8.9%)||40.5%|
|South Dakota||869,666 (46)||$29,611 (33)||13.0%||8,696 (13.3%)||39.9%|
|Wisconsin||5,795,483 (20)||$31,998 (21)||11.3%||64,534 (-3.8%)||43.6%|
Wisconsin supports 10% of the population of the Midwest, and about 1.8% of the nation. Wisconsin provides 10% of the Midwest undergraduate degrees awarded and less than 10% of the associate degrees, graduate degrees and doctoral degrees in the Midwest.
|STATE||Undergraduate Enrollment||Graduate Enrollment||Associate Degrees Awarded||Bachelor’s Degrees Awarded||Master’s Degrees Awarded||Doctorate Degrees Awarded|
According to the Almanac, colleges and universities in the United States which are seeing the largest increases are doing so because they are focusing on creating or expanding their online programs, at the undergraduate, graduate and in some cases doctoral levels. University of Cumberlands (Kentucky) created an online graduate degree program in 2011 and now has close to 12,000 online students, subsidizing the 1,400 undergraduates who study at the campus’s actual buildings. The program has made Cumberlands the fastest-growing doctoral private nonprofit institution in the United States, with a 350 percent enrollment expansion from 2007 to 2017. The report says, “This year’s list of the fastest-growing colleges is a tale of two types of institutions: smaller, faith-based colleges that have found ways to distinguish themselves in a crowded market, and nonprofit mega-universities that have built online programs tailored to adult learners and marketed those programs aggressively. Their strategies differ, but both offer lessons for colleges seeking to expand their enrollment. “