Colorado issues its own college completion goal

While Idaho is resetting its “60 percent” postsecondary goal, another Western state is upping the ante.

Colorado state officials unveiled the “Colorado Rises” initiative last week. The target: To get 66 percent of Colorado’s adults to hold a postsecondary degree or certificate by 2025.

Since 2010, Idaho has said it wants to get 60 percent of its 25- to 34-year-olds to hold a postsecondary degree. State officials have abandoned the original 2020 target date, and now hope to hit the 60 percent threshold by 2025.

The goals sound more or less similar, and so too is the driving force. Like their Idaho counterparts, Colorado officials say the state needs to do a better job of preparing young adults for the work place.

According to the Denver Post, the Colorado Rises initiative outlines four strategies for boosting the graduation rates. For example, the initiative calls for addressing college affordability and innovation, and closing achievement gaps between white and minority students.

Last week, a gubernatorial task force issued a dozen recommendations to improve Idaho’s college completion numbers. This list includes a “digital campus” to link rural Idahoans to colleges and universities, and outcomes-based budgeting that links higher education funding to performance metrics, such as the number of degrees issued.

Gov. Butch Otter assembled the task force to look at ways to boost Idaho’s stagnant college completion rates.


Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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