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Economic Benefits of Higher Education

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Economic Benefits of Higher Education

As you grow up, all throughout school, your elders tell you how you need to prepare for college and go to college. You think that it is just another step towards adulthood, a way to become better prepared for the job market, a time to party. It is all of those things but it is also has an incredibly profound benefit to the economic betterment of our society. From higher income to increased employment rates, education pays, literally.

A study done by the University of Illinois, Loyola University Chicago and a host of other institutions showed some very reflective results in regard to higher education. It showed that as people assume; people with higher education make more money (Resek 1). A male who is a high school graduate makes $37,680 on average versus a male with a bachelors degree who makes $80,144 on average (United States 679). That constitutes a difference $42,464 a year in earnings; a very significant figure. Seeking employment is also much easier for the highly educated. The unemployment rate for those without a high school diploma was 8.8%, 5.5% for high school graduates but a mere 3.1% for college graduates in 2004-2005 (United States 608). This shows how it becomes much easier to simply be employed by seeking and attaining higher education. In any case, sheer financial gain is only one of the many benefits of higher education.

The governments investment in institutions of higher learning is ingenious. In the state of Illinois in 1999 the government invested $2.5 billion in colleges and universities. For every dollar that was spent they received $2.40 in increased tax receipts. To gain that same amount in tax revenue would have taken an investment $5.9 billion; an investment not needed due to tax income attributed to higher education (Resek 3). It was also found that the presence of colleges and universities brought 455,000 more jobs to the state, 130,000 of which were out-of-state, as well as bringing in $41 billion in expenditures due directly to institutions of higher learning (Resek 2). Not surprisingly, it was also found that higher education helped in other areas as well.

The benefits of education are not limited to financial gain thankfully. It was found that college graduates are more socially aware, financially proficient and community objected. It was also shown that graduates were less likely to smoke,

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