Getting a good education is important to most Idahoans, an Idaho Politics Weekly poll shows.
But how important getting a four-year college degree is in getting a “good” job depends on one’s age and education, finds IPW’s pollster Dan Jones & Associates.
Jones asked several questions to gauge Idahoans’ opinions about education, how much education is required to get a good job and whether just a high school education is adequate to enter the work force.
Here are some of the results:
-- Most Idahoans say a four-year college degree is needed to get a “good” job – 57 percent say so, while 41 percent say a person can get a good job without a college degree.
-- However, younger Idahoans aren’t as sold on that idea – 53 percent of those who are 18-29 years old say you don’t need a college education to get a good job, while 47 percent in that age group say you do.
That may be because many younger college graduates may not have found a “good” job, or at least one they feel they needed their degree for.
-- However, those who actually have a college B.A. or B.S. degree disagree with the youngsters.
Jones finds that 61 percent of those holding a college degree say it was needed for them to get a good job, while 38 percent say it is not required to get a good job.
Meanwhile, 80 percent of Idahoans say a high school diploma is “very” important to get. Only 5 percent said being a high school graduate is not important.
-- 71 percent said a college education is “very” or “somewhat” valuable, while 22 percent were neutral on whether a college degree was valuable, and only 7 percent said a college education is not very valuable.
Finally, Idahoans are basically split over whether just a high school degree “adequately” prepares someone to enter the Idaho work force.
-- 44 percent of adults said a high school graduate is prepared to enter the work force, while 50 percent said they are not.
Those nearest their graduations – the 18-to-29 year old group are more decisive: 75 percent said they were not ready to enter the workforce after high school graduation, while only 35 percent said they were.
Those with only a high school degree – all ages – see things slightly differently:
-- 40 percent of high school graduates said they were ready to enter the work force, 55 percent said they were not.
-- Among college-educated folks, 42 percent said they believe today high school graduates are ready to enter the work force, while 53 percent said they are not.
Jones polled 649 adults from May 4-18. The survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.95 percent.