Studies continue to show that a college degree is a good investment. In an article published just last month by the United States Census Bureau, researchers calculated — once again — that workers with a bachelor’s degree earn an average of one million dollars more over the course of their careers than those with only a high school diploma. These additional earnings more than cover the costs of completing a degree.
The advantages of a college degree don’t stop at higher salaries. A recent Pew Research Center study showed that college graduates suffer less when the economy takes a down turn. For example, in March 2010, the unemployment rate of college graduates was 5 percent while those without a bachelor’s degree faced an 11 percent unemployment rate. This unemployment rate gap has persisted for many decades and through multiple ups and downs of the economy.
Preparing students for gainful employment upon graduation is an area in which UT Tyler excels. Our nursing graduates boast a 95 percent pass rate on the state licensing exam, while our nurse practitioners earn an even better pass rate at 100 percent. Our education graduates are highly successful, too, with a 94 percent pass rate on the teacher certification exam. Perhaps because of these stellar performances, 90 percent of UT Tyler graduates have jobs or have been accepted to graduate school before they graduate — even in the current tough economy.
The higher education community has much to be proud of. We are providing students the skills and credentials necessary to give them the best opportunity to succeed. I invite anyone who feels differently to come visit UT Tyler and see our great university at work.