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55 by 25: Progress Slowed During Pandemic for Workforce goal, new aid programs may help

Acadiana took incremental steps this year toward reaching its goal of 55% of working-age adults in the region holding a postsecondary degree, certificate or other high-value credential, One Acadiana reported Friday.

Speaking about its 2022 "55 by 25" annual report to area partners at South Louisiana Community College, the host group revealed that, according to 2020 Census data, 27.5% of adults in the region have an associate’s degree or higher level of formal education.

Additional attainment of certificates and industry-recognized certifications pushed the overall regional attainment rate to 42.7% in the nine parishes served by One Acadiana, short of the benchmark of 55% established in 2019 and slightly behind schedule of reaching that overall goal in three years.

Andre Breaux, One Acadiana’s vice president of policy initiatives and governmental affairs, said degree attainment was about 3 points ahead of 2019. But, he added, college enrollment was down about 5.1% nationally during the pandemic, about 3.2% in Louisiana.

Read more at The Advocate...

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