The chart above was recently published by the Wall Street Journal on the percentage change in employment for different groups of workers from December 2019 through June 2020. The chart shows that through the economic contraction associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, workers with a bachelor’s degree or higher experienced fewer job losses and a faster rebound in employment than workers with lower levels of educational attainment. This trend matches previous economic contractions and recessions and will likely persist—or perhaps accelerate—through the economic recovery as employers develop new approaches to producing and delivering goods and services that minimize face-to-face contact.
Higher levels of education enhance the ability of workers to participate in and experience growth from the innovative business practices developed during times of massive social and economic change. Increased access to high-quality education provides benefits of consequence at every level: individual, community, state, and society. It is this logic that has informed our efforts over the past 18 years in eliminating all barriers facing Arizona students in attending and succeeding at Arizona State University. We look forward to continuing to collaborate with you to expand access and improve the long-term economic prospects of our state’s residents.