WASHINGTON (CBSDC) – A recent poll conducted by the Pew Research Center has found that the gap between salaries of those with college degrees and those without them is growing.

Researchers found that millennials – the portion of people in the United States who were born between the early 1980s and the early 2000s – with a Bachelor’s degree or higher forms of education certification earned, on average, around $15,500 more than their less formally educated counterparts.

The differences didn’t end there. Those involved with the poll also noted a lower unemployment rate among those with college degrees, and fewer graduates living in poverty.

A gap was also observed between those with two-year degrees and those with high school diplomas, with people in the latter category earning the least and facing the greatest difficulties with employment.

“On virtually every measure of economic well-being and career attainment—from personal earnings to job satisfaction to the share employed full time—young college graduates are outperforming their peers with less education,” a release on the poll’s findings states.

It continued, “And when today’s young adults are compared with previous generations, the disparity in economic outcomes between college graduates and those with a high school diploma or less formal schooling has never been greater in the modern era.”

Pew’s findings regarding the value of high school diplomas in today’s economy were especially dire.

“While earnings of those with a college degree rose, the typical high school graduate’s earnings fell by more than $3,000, from $31,384 in 1965 to $28,000 in 2013,” researchers noted in the release. “This decline, the Pew Research analysis found, has been large enough to nearly offset the gains of college graduates.”

The findings of the Pew Research Center poll – which involved a reported 2,002 randomly selected adults – was combined with economic data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau.


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