West Virginia's colleges and universities received a failing grade in a report released recently by the Institute for a Competitive Workforce. The report identified the Mountain State as one of only four in the nation that received an "F" for not meeting the standards employers demand from four-year institutions.
The Institute, which is a nonprofit affiliate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, also reported that this state's two-year colleges did only slightly better, receiving a "D" for their efforts.
The critical factor is that individuals who receive a bachelor's degree in West Virginia only earn $12,700 more annually than those who merely graduate from high school. Even more revealing, they have an unemployment rate that is a mere two points better than those high school graduates.
Those who receive associate degrees earn only $7,600 more annually and their unemployment rate is a mere 1.5 points lower than those with only a high school diploma.