30 Million Workers Without a Bachelor’s Degree Have Good Jobs

Although the decline in the manufacturing economy eliminated many good jobs for high school graduates, new research from the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce (Georgetown Center) in collaboration with JPMorgan Chase & Co. finds that there are currently 30 million good jobs in the U.S. that pay without a Bachelor’s degree (B.A.). These good jobs have a median salary of $55,000.

Good Jobs That Pay without a B.A. shows that good jobs continue to grow, but they are changing from traditional blue-collar industries to skilled-services industries. A gain of 4 million good jobs in skilled-services industries, such as financial services and health services, have more than offset the 2.8 million good jobs lost in manufacturing.

Although the economy has shifted, workers without a B.A. still comprise 64 percent of all workers. Many believe good jobs for workers without a B.A. no longer exist in this new environment. “Even though there have been big losses, manufacturing still provides the largest number of good jobs,” said Anthony P. Carnevale, director of the Georgetown Center and lead author of the report.

While the good jobs of the manufacturing era only required a high school diploma or less, new good jobs tend to require at least some postsecondary education and training. The growth of good jobs has been greatest for workers with an Associate’s degree.

Americans with only high school graduates still have the largest share of good jobs (11.6 million), but that share continues to decline. Workers with some college have 9.3 million good jobs, those with Associate’s degrees have 7.6 million good jobs, and high school dropouts only have 1.7 million.

To view the report, visit goodjobsdata.org