Economy & Economic Development  March 28, 2016

Boulder, Fort Collins metros ranked among most-educated in nation

The Boulder metropolitan statistical area ranks second and Fort Collins fourth on a new list of the most-educated metro areas in the United States.

New York-based ValuePengin.com, a data-analysis firm that aims to help consumers make decisions, evaluated the top 200 MSAs nationwide using 17 different data sets. The four major metrics used to rank metro areas included: level of educational attainment for those 25 and over; percentage of the population whose poverty status is determined by a specific level of education; quality of schools, including primary and secondary, in addition to universities; and the percentage of the population, broken down by various education levels, that is employed.

The Boulder MSA, defined as Boulder County, was topped on the Value Penquin list only by the San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara MSA in California. San-Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, Calif., finished third, followed by Fort Collins (defined as Larimer County) and Ann Arbor, Mich.; in the top five.

Boulder County, which ranked first for educational attainment, also scored well in school quality, coming in fourth in that category. The Fort Collins MSA, or Larimer County, ranked in the top one-third for all four metrics, including fifth for educational attainment and 36th for school quality.

Three other MSAs in Colorado made the list, including the Greeley MSA, which includes all of Weld County. The Greeley MSA ranked 140th, scoring well for the education and poverty correlation and education and employment ties but poorly for educational attainment and quality of schools.

The Colorado Springs MSA ranked 22nd overall. Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, meanwhile, came in 87th, scoring highly in three of four categories but coming in 185th for school quality.

The Boulder metropolitan statistical area ranks second and Fort Collins fourth on a new list of the most-educated metro areas in the United States.

New York-based ValuePengin.com, a data-analysis firm that aims to help consumers make decisions, evaluated the top 200 MSAs nationwide using 17 different data sets. The four major metrics used to rank metro areas included: level of educational attainment for those 25 and over; percentage of the population whose poverty status is determined by a specific level of education; quality of schools, including primary and secondary, in addition to universities; and…

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