Michigan embraces its version of a ’60 percent goal’

Michigan has joined the list of states with a “60 percent goal.”

The Michigan goal sounds similar to Idaho’s goal: get 60 percent of the state’s adults to hold a college degree or certificate. (Idaho’s 60 percent goal is focused only on 25- to 34-year-olds.)

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced Michigan’s goal during her Feb. 12 state of the state address.

And much like Idaho — with a postsecondary completion rate that has stagnated at 42 percent — Michigan faces a daunting challenge.

Only 44 percent of the state’s adults hold a degree or certificate. And that only tells part of the story, said Scott Jenkins of the Lumina Foundation.

“The learning for Michiganders of all races needs to improve,” Jenkins wrote. “In order to reach the 60 percent goal, whites need to increase achievement by 18 percentage points, African-Americans by 34 and Hispanics (one of the fastest growing populations) by 35 percentage points. Closing these gaps will take resources and commitment.”

The Lumina Foundation, based in Indianapolis, has encouraged Idaho and other states to embrace an ambitious postsecondary completion goal.

More reading: Click here to read “Obstacles and Options: Building Paths Beyond High School.” Idaho Education News’ eight-part series takes an in-depth look at the state’s efforts to reach the 60 percent goal — and the demographic challenges that stand in the way.


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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