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It may seem a daunting, if not impossible, task to get the United States to the widely heralded goal of a nearly 50 percent increase in the college attainment of its citizens -- but the Lumina Foundation for Education aims, in a new report, to break the job down into smaller pieces to show that it is attainable. In the report, published today, Lumina goes beyond reiterating its arguments for why the "big goal" it has set is essential for the United States economy and for individuals alike, though the study does that, too. But in providing state-by-state (and even county-by-county) data on how many graduates a particular area would need to produce if the national target is to be met, Lumina seeks to break the job down into practical, tangible goals. Even at that level, the data show just how far the country has to go, Lumina says: "If the current rate of increase remains, less than 47 percent of Americans will hold a two- or four-year degree by 2025. Economic experts say this is far below the level that can keep the nation competitive in the global, knowledge-based economy."
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