This Is the Most Educated City in Illinois | Illinois

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The average cost of a college education in the United States is $35,720 a year — three times higher than it was two decades ago. While rising tuition costs are discouraging many Americans from enrolling, a college education is an investment that can broaden access to career opportunities, improve job security, and increase earning potential.

Nationwide, an estimated 32.1% of American adults 25 and older have a bachelor’s degree or higher. Educational attainment rates vary considerably across the country, however, and in every state, there is at least one city where the share of adults with a bachelor’s degree is higher than the national average.

In Illinois, Wilmette, a village of about 27,200 people, ranks as the best educated place. An estimated 83.2% of adults in the area have a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared to the 34.7% bachelor’s degree attainment rate across the state as a whole.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average weekly wage for a college-educated worker in the United States is about 67% higher than it is for those with no more than a high school diploma — and in cities with well-educated populations, incomes also tend to be higher than average. In Wilmette, the typical household earns $164,681 a year, above the statewide median household income of $65,886.

All data in this story are five-year estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2019 American Community Survey. We considered all census “place” geographies — a category that includes incorporated legal entities and census-designated statistical entities. Places with populations of 25,000 or less, or with high margins of error in education data, were excluded from analysis.

 

Most educated place Adults with a bachelor’s degree (%) Adults with a bachelor’s degree; statewide (%) Median household income ($) Median household income; statewide ($)
Alabama: Vestavia Hills 69.3 25.5 109,485 50,536
Alaska: Juneau 38.4 29.6 88,390 77,640
Arizona: Catalina Foothills 67.8 29.5 92,929 58,945
Arkansas: Bentonville 50.2 23.0 80,392 47,597
California: Los Altos 84.2 33.9 235,278 75,235
Colorado: Boulder 76.0 40.9 69,520 72,331
Connecticut: Westport 78.0 39.3 206,466 78,444
Delaware: Newark 53.2 32.0 58,434 68,287
Florida: Coral Gables 66.7 29.9 100,843 55,660
Georgia: Dunwoody 72.2 31.3 96,057 58,700
Hawaii: East Honolulu 58.3 33.0 133,165 81,275
Idaho: Moscow 55.8 27.6 41,896 55,785
Illinois: Wilmette 83.2 34.7 164,681 65,886
Indiana: West Lafayette 71.5 26.5 34,650 56,303
Iowa: Ames 62.7 28.6 48,105 60,523
Kansas: Leawood 76.9 33.4 157,515 59,597
Kentucky: Lexington-Fayette 43.6 24.2 57,291 50,589
Louisiana: Lafayette 38.2 24.1 51,264 49,469
Maine: Portland 52.6 31.8 60,467 57,918
Maryland: Bethesda 85.9 40.2 164,142 84,805
Massachusetts: Lexington 84.7 43.7 186,201 81,215
Michigan: Ann Arbor 76.0 29.1 65,745 57,144
Minnesota: Edina 69.8 36.1 104,244 71,306
Mississippi: Madison 68.5 22.0 114,521 45,081
Missouri: Chesterfield 69.2 29.2 113,315 55,461
Montana: Bozeman 58.7 32.0 55,569 54,970
Nebraska: Lincoln 39.6 31.9 57,746 61,439
Nevada: Summerlin South 48.8 24.7 93,899 60,365
New Hampshire: Dover 46.5 37.0 71,631 76,768
New Jersey: Princeton 81.0 39.7 137,672 82,545
New Mexico: Santa Fe 41.7 27.3 57,972 49,754
New York: Ithaca 66.9 36.6 34,424 68,486
North Carolina: Chapel Hill 76.9 31.3 73,614 54,602
North Dakota: West Fargo 44.2 30.0 85,120 64,894
Ohio: Upper Arlington 77.1 28.3 123,548 56,602
Oklahoma: Edmond 53.4 25.5 81,473 52,919
Oregon: Lake Oswego 71.4 33.7 108,927 62,818
Pennsylvania: State College 70.6 31.4 34,005 61,744
Rhode Island: Warwick 33.8 34.2 73,757 67,167
South Carolina: Mount Pleasant 63.9 28.1 103,232 53,199
South Dakota: Sioux Falls 35.2 28.8 59,912 58,275
Tennessee: Brentwood 76.1 27.3 168,688 53,320
Texas: University Park 87.8 29.9 224,485 61,874
Utah: Holladay 55.8 34.0 88,728 71,621
Vermont: Burlington 53.3 38.0 51,394 61,973
Virginia: McLean 83.5 38.8 207,184 74,222
Washington: Mercer Island 78.2 36.0 147,566 73,775
West Virginia: Morgantown 55.0 20.6 42,966 46,711
Wisconsin: Brookfield 60.7 30.1 108,198 61,747
Wyoming: Laramie 52.7 27.4 46,117 64,049

 



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Caleb Alexander

Caleb Alexander

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