The Chamber’s 2019 State of Education highlighted the importance of increasing community-wide educational attainment as a driver for the regional economy. Dr. Danette Howard, senior vice president and chief strategy officer at Lumina Foundation, delivered the event's keynote address. Lumina is one of the largest private foundations in the country focused exclusively on postsecondary education; the foundation's goal is to ensure that by 2025, 60 percent of Americans attain a quality degree, credential or certificate after high school.
Dr. Howard explained the direct correlation between postsecondary education and increased average income.
"Ninety-nine percent of the 11.6 million jobs that have been created since the Great Recession went to those that have some post-high school learning," Dr. Howard said. "While we have an eye on that 60 percent goal, we have to think about an education that will prepare our young people for the jobs of today, the jobs of tomorrow and the jobs of 2030 that don’t even exist yet."
Since 2008, Oklahoma’s overall rate of educational attainment has increased by 11.5%. In Tulsa County, 40.7% of residents have some education beyond high school. However, the region still lags behind the national attainment rate of 47.6 percent.
To read her presentation, click here.