Despite the rising costs of tuition in recent years, the percent of students enrolling in degree-granting institutions continues to increase. The new “knowledge economy” is creating higher-paid jobs, but most require education beyond high school. A higher salary may incentivize the 61 million individuals who are older than 25 with only high school diplomas to benefit by obtaining a postsecondary education.
Total postsecondary enrollment is expected to grow 15 percent between 2009 and 2019. Although enrollment growth of nontraditional students has eclipsed that of traditional students, the imbalance is expected to shift. Projected growth between 2009 and 2019 shows traditional student enrollment growing at 16 percent while enrollment for students older than 25 grows at 13 percent.