Detroit Regional Chamber > Education & Talent > Report: Modest Gains in College Graduates but Pipeline Problems Persist

Report: Modest Gains in College Graduates but Pipeline Problems Persist

December 7, 2023

Crain’s Detroit Business
Dec. 6, 2023
Sherri Welch

Post-secondary graduation rates among Southeast Michigan students are rising modestly, but the pipeline of high school graduates entering post-secondary institutions continues to weaken.

Those pipeline issues point to even greater challenges in finding needed talent in the region going forward, according to the 2023 State of Education and Talent report released by the Detroit Regional Chamber Wednesday.

“The Detroit Region is gradually increasing educational attainment, but there are significant challenges that, if not addressed, will jeopardize our ability to field a workforce that’s prepared for the jobs of the future,” said Chamber President and Chief Executive Officer Sandy Baruah, in a release.

“Our report is good news, bad news. There are promising gains like increased bachelor’s degree attainment, yet an alarming downward trend in overall enrollment. The bottom line is that we still have too many people not earning a degree or credential after high school.”

Part of the issue is the cost of college and the perception among Michigan residents that it’s not worth the cost, the chamber said in the report. Only a quarter of Michigan voters believe a college education is very important to landing a successful job and a four-year degree is worth the money, according to a statewide poll of 600 registered voters commissioned by the Detroit Regional Chamber and conducted Feb. 10-13.