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Center for Workforce Education's Three Educational Pathways to Good Jobs

In partnership with JPMorgan Chase & Co., the Center for Workforce Education (CWE) released new research that examines the three pathways to good jobs defined by education. Three Educational Pathways to Good Jobs: High School, Middle Skills, and Bachelor’s Degree finds that there are 13 million good jobs for workers with a high school diploma, 16 million good jobs for workers with middle-skills preparation, and 36 million good jobs for workers with bachelor's degrees (BAs). 

CWE defines good jobs as ones that pay at least $35,000, average $56,000 for workers with less than a BA, and average $65,000 when including workers with a BA or higher. 

Most notably, the report finds that all of the growth of new good jobs in the non-BA economy has been in middle-skills jobs, especially those that require an associate’s degree. Most of this growth was in skilled-services industries, but there was also substantial growth in blue-collar industries for workers with technical skills.

  • Since 1991, good job opportunities declined by 1.8 million jobs on the high school pathway, grew by 3.5 million on the middle-skills pathway, and rose by 18.2 million on the BA pathway.
  • Twenty percent of workers with good jobs have no more than a high school diploma and on-the-job training.
  • More than 20 million new good jobs were created in skilled-services industries, while the net number of good jobs in blue-collar industries slightly declined.
  • Blue-collar industries added 800,000 good jobs on the middle-skills pathway and 500,000 good jobs for workers with a BA or higher.

Access the full report for Three Educational Pathways to Good Jobs: High School, Middle Skills, and Bachelor’s Degree at cew.georgetown.edu/3Pathways

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