Aug 29, 2012

The Side Benefits of a College Education

In the middle of the ongoing debate about the value of a college degree, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published new data on the very real health effects of higher education. 

It’s clearly not all about the money.  Education pays off in lots of different ways, not the least of which is longer life.

Here are some of the findings from the CDC:

·         In 2010, 31 percent of adults 25-64 years of age with a high school diploma or less were smokers, compared with 24 percent of adults with some college and 9 percent of adults with a bachelor’s degree or higher.
·         In households where the head had less than a high school education, 24 percent of boys and 22 percent of girls were obese.  Where the head of household had a bachelor’s degree or higher, 11 percent of the boys and 7 percent of the girls were obese.
·         Women 25 years of age and over with less than a bachelor’s degree were more likely to be obese (39-43 percent) than those with a bachelor’s degree or higher (25 percent).
·         Between 1996 and 2006, the gap in life expectance at age 25 between those with less than a high school education and those with a degree increased by 1.9 years for men and 2.8 years for women.
·         On average in 2006, 25-year old men without a high school diploma had a life expectancy 9.3 years less than those with a bachelor’s degree or higher.

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