More than half of Missourians have obtained a college degree or certificate since the state higher education target, “Big Goal,” was set in 2011, according to a news release.

In 2011, the state set the “Big Goal” of having 60% of working-age adults hold a high-quality certificate or degree by 2025.

The state saw an increase in certificates and degrees from 48.9% of Missourians in 2011 to 53.7% which is calculated based on wage data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Consistently, more graduates from Missouri colleges and universities received degrees or certificates, with a 15% increase from 2011.

“More students who start college are working hard and completing their degrees,” Commissioner of Higher Education Zora Mulligan said.

“Several institutions are breaking down barriers to degree completion and those efforts are making a significant advance in improving graduation rates.”

Five higher education institutions have increased graduation rates by more than 10 percent since 2011. Those institutions are Fontbonne University, Saint Louis University, State Technical College, College of the Ozarks and Ozarks Technical Community College.

MU also saw an increase, though a slight one compared to other state institutions.

According to calculations based on MU news releases, 7,753 students graduated from MU in 2018, which is abut a 6% increase compared with 7,288 students graduated in 2011.

“We will continue to monitor our progress toward the Big Goal as we look for more opportunities to help Missourians get on a path to education,” Mulligan said.

  • General Assignment Reporter, Winter 2019 | Copy Editor, Summer 2020 | Studying investigative and convergence journalism | Reach me at, or in the newsroom at 882-5700

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