With roughly a month left until Utah schools are back in session, personal finance website WalletHub dove into the academics early by comparing a variety of analytics to create a list of the most and least educated cities in the United States.
The list, released Monday, had the Provo-Orem area rounding out the top 10, with Salt Lake ranking 36 and Ogden/Clearfield at 78.
According to WalletHub, higher levels of education directly correlate with higher earnings, so with that and a new academic year on the mind, the site compared the 150 largest U.S. metropolitan statistical areas based on 11 key metrics analyzing everything from quality of public schools to racial education gaps, as well as adults age 25 and up with a bachelor’s degree or higher.
The top cities included Ann Arbor, Michigan; San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, California; Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC; Durham-Chapel Hill, North Carolina; Madison, Wisconsin; San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, California; Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Massachusetts/New Hampshire; Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Washington; Austin-Round Rock, Texas; and Provo-Orem, Utah.
Focusing in just on No. 10, Provo-Orem, the area ranked second for average quality of universities and percent of associate’s degree holders or college-experienced adults, fourth in the percent of high school diploma holders and 10th in enrolled students in top universities per capita, with other factors such as percentage of bachelor’s degree holders, the gender education gap and percentage of graduate or professional degree holders also having an impact on study results.
According to WalletHub, “Research shows that a skilled and educated workforce provides a significant boost to the economy,” a positive indicator for Provo and Orem.