What New Educational Attainment Statistics Mean

More than 30 percent of U.S. adults over 25 have a bachelor’s degree, the highest percentage ever, according to the latest U.S. Census Bureau report.


Americans are increasingly educated, with a record-breaking 30% of them now holding bachelor's degrees, according to the U.S. Census Bureau's February 2011 report, which cited 2009 data.

For credit unions, the trend could have several implications. It's an indication they likely have more members carrying student loans, or, if the trend continues, will have more members looking for them. A breakdown of the data reveals that it's the younger age groups that are becoming more educated. About 31% of 24- to 29-year-olds held bachelor's degrees. It also reveals that the Hispanic community is becoming increasingly educated.

This is an important milestone in our history,” Census Bureau director Robert Groves says in a press release. “For many people, education is a sure path to a prosperous life. The more education people have the more likely they are to have a job and earn more money, particularly for individuals who hold a bachelor's degree.”

From 2001 to 2011, the number of Hispanics with a bachelor's or higher education increased 80% from 2.1 million to 3.8 million. The percentage of Hispanics with a bachelor's or higher education increased from 11.1% in 2001 to 14.1% in 2011. Greater education often yields larger salaries, which means poplulations like the Hispanic community are on track to become even more valuable members in the future.

Credit unions like Village Credit Union in Des Moines, IA, and Latino Community Credit Union in Durhan, NC, are already catering specifically to Hispanics. Many cooperatives are offering products that cater specifically to the Hispanic community, such as the prepaid Cooopera Card. If the Hispanic community continues to achieve higher educational attainment, credit unions should expect even more demand for financial products and services from that demographic.


Feb. 27, 2012



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