Nevada Post-Secondary Attainment Rates Report Reveals a Disparity in Qualified Residents with a Post-Secondary Education

On March 6 2017, United Way of Southern Nevada (UWSN) released the second report in its Community Report Series, “Post-Secondary Attainment in Southern Nevada.” The report illustrates that Clark County falls behind the national average and highlights how Southern Nevada’s cities measure up as well as highlights specific interventions to help improve post secondary attainment.

“We are inviting people and partners to join us in the effort to increase local levels of post-secondary attainment,” said Bob Morgan, UWSN President and CEO. “Educational attainment  is the key lever that we are using to fight multi-generational poverty..”

Post-secondary attainment is the proportion of adults with college degrees (associates, bachelors, graduate, professional). It can also include high quality certifications and industry-recognized credentials required for employment. In Nevada, 54% of today’s jobs require some form of  post-secondary education, but only 30% of Nevada and Clark County residents hold a post-secondary degree.  

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Clark County falls behind the national average in adult educational  attainment in terms of adults with some college or higher. 32.9% of adults have completed some college or have an associates degree and 22.2% have obtained a bachelor’s degree or higher. The United States rates are 29.1% and 29.3%, respectively. In addition, only 4% of adults aged 24 to 64  held a quality credential outside of a degree in 2014.


Increasing post-secondary attainment in Clark County and across Nevada is essential for the future of Southern Nevada’s families and communities. Both locally and across the United States, programs are working to improve FAFSA completion rates and ensure timely completion of college coursework in an effort to strengthen the pathway from high school to career development.

Outlined in the report are programs to increase educational attainment rates from University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Clark County School District, College of Southern Nevada, 15 to Finish, GEAR UP and United Way of Southern Nevada.

To view the report and learn how we can collectively increase post-secondary attainment, click here. To schedule an interview, please contact Laurie Mann, United Way Senior Marketing Director at 702-892-2362.