Consider the highly touted goal the UW System announced in April 2010 to boost the number of four-year degree holders in Wisconsin.
At the time, 26% of Wisconsin residents had a four-year college degree — a bit lower than the national average and significantly less than the 32% of Minnesota residents with a four-year degree.
The UW System announced it would raise the number of degrees campuses award each year by 30% over 15 years, with a goal of producing a total of 80,000 more four-year degree holders by 2025 than they would otherwise. To accomplish that, officials determined schools would have to confer 33,700 bachelor’s degrees annually by 2025, up from a rate of 24,766 bachelor’s degrees in 2009-’10.
In the last academic year — six years into the 15-year initiative — UW campuses awarded a total of 27,489 bachelor’s degrees. That’s 11% of the way toward the goal of a 30% increase over 15 years.