The Midwest Challenge: Matching Jobs with Education in the Post-Recession Economy
The Midwest Challenge:
Matching Jobs with Education in the Post-Recession
Anthony P. Carnevale and Nicole Smith
September 13, 2011
• The Midwest was the hardest hit region during the
recession, primarily due to the region’s industrial
• Since the recession began in 2007, the Midwest lost
610,000 jobs in manufacturing, nearly a third (31
percent) of all manufacturing jobs lost during the
• In spite of these job losses, 2 million job openings will
be available in manufacturing nationally through
2018, mostly due to baby-boomer retirement.
• Manufacturing and agricultural employment in the
Midwest will continue to decline 4 and 1 percent
respectively through 2018.
• Although declining in employment terms,
manufacturing is still growing tremendously in
• Manufacturing productivity per worker was $300,000
in 2010, more than three times what it was in 1970.
• 20 percent (10.2 million) of America’s job openings–
will be in the Midwest through 2018.
• Ohio and Michigan will have the largest proportion
of job openings.
• Minnesota and North Dakota will lead in terms of
the proportion of jobs requiring postsecondary
Kansas, Illinois, and Iowa led job growth through 2018
• Midwestern states are no longer solely dependent on
• New jobs in the region will be in high-skill service
industries such as education and healthcare.
• These new jobs will require at least some
postsecondary education and training beyond high
The growth in demand for postsecondary education is
on par with job growth
Five Midwestern states will exceed the national average
in the proportion of jobs requiring postsecondary
education and training by 2018
• Minnesota, North Dakota, Nebraska, Illinois, and Kansas will
require 64 to 70 percent of workers to have postsecondary
education by 2018.
• Those averages exceed the national postsecondary education
requirement average of 63 percent.
For more information:
See the full report at: cew.georgetown.edu/MidwestChallenge/
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