April 2022 Theme: Economic and Social Mobility
The State System delivers value to students by providing opportunities for upward economic and social mobility. The degrees and credentials earned from a State System education help students from low-income families join the middle class and help others to continue climbing the economic ladder. A State System degree catapults graduates to good, family-sustaining jobs. Their higher incomes create economic security for their families, support their local rural or urban communities, and collectively provides a powerful boost to Pennsylvania’s economy.
Education leads to higher wages and improves economic mobility.
Education is a powerful factor for greater income and economic growth. Over their lifetime, college graduates earn 84% more than those with a high school diploma alone. On average, workers with a bachelor’s degree earn about $70,000 per year and $2.8 million throughout their career. Each additional education level typically pays off with higher income jobs throughout a lifetime.
Significant additional investment is necessary to ensure a State System education is responsive to employers’ needs and accessible to everyone.
State System universities are powerful drivers to help Pennsylvanians into the middle class.
- The State System’s high-quality education is aligned to meet the needs of Pennsylvania’s workforce at the lowest possible cost, which drives individual and community economic and social mobility.
- On average, State System graduates earned more than the average high school graduates, regardless of family income, race/ethnicity, program of study, and System university.
- 75% of students from low-income families climb into the middle class within a decade after graduation from a State System university.
- State System graduates earn $866,144 more over their careers than people without a degree.
With significant additional investment in the State System and its students, Pennsylvania can restore and reinvigorate its affordable public higher education option for students, enhance its economic competitiveness, expand opportunities for economic and social mobility, and respond to employers’ urgent need for the talent they need.
Investment in the State System will drive continuing transformational change that is currently underway with the implementation of System Redesign so it is here to serve students, the community, and the Commonwealth for years to come.