Study links higher education to positive life impact

On Thursday, the University of Colorado board of trustees took a first look at a new study that shows a college degree can have a positive impact on someone’s life during their annual summer retreat. at the Gateway Canons Resort & Spa at Gateway.

“There is a very strong association with scoring higher on just about all of these dimensions the higher you go through your education,” said Phyllis Resnick, a Colorado economist who led the study.

This is the first time the board has held a retreat at Gateway. In recent years it has been held at Devil’s Thumb Ranch in Tabernash, and before that it was held at former UC President Bruce Benson’s mountain ranch near Kremmling.

CU Regent Heidi Ganahl was not present for Thursday’s session.

UC’s acting chief financial officer Chad Marturano said creating a “valuemetric” to study the different ways higher education can positively affect someone’s life is a concept the system is working on. at four campuses started work about 18 months ago.

“We’ve always talked about economic gains versus educational attainment, and we kept coming back to the board and saying, ‘What are the other ways we can think about this, but not just talk about it? sketchy and anecdotal, but actually something to this (and) do you have any data to back it up? said Marturano.

Resnick’s study pulled data from a variety of sources and looked at five parameters that impact people’s lives: economic; health; residence; civic and social; and professional. Using this data, Resnick compared how variables change based on a person’s level of education. The education levels she used included no degree, associate or professional degree, bachelor’s degree, and higher degree.

When Resnick compared the five measures to the four education cohorts, she found that people with a bachelor’s degree scored about twice as high on value as people without a degree.

“We got this really good kind of result that as you progress in your educational activities or achievements, you score higher and higher on that data,” she said.

Resnick said the study is just a snapshot over time using information from four sources with respondents of varying ages.

UC President Todd Saliman said the initial study is just another tool the university has for its advocacy, marketing and legislative work.

“It’s another tool in our toolbox to talk about the value of higher education depending on the audience you’re talking to and to analytically demonstrate that there is that connection or association,” he said. -he declares.

During Thursday’s retreat, board members also discussed their role in leadership and governance after hearing from Peg Portscheller, president of education consultancy Portscheller & Associates.

Portscheller has helped the council think about working collectively as it transitions Regents Lesley Smith and Ken Montera into their new roles of President and Vice President, prepares to lose three Regents while gaining three new ones, and begins to working with new CU President Todd Saliman.

Portscheller told the board that he should view the retirement as a way to reflect on how he was doing, how he was advancing the university’s strategic plan with a new president and chancellors and what he still had to do.

“We get together and think about how we all work together,” she said.

The board has begun revisiting old goals it set at a 2020 winter retreat to discuss which ones it wants to keep, which ones it wants to start, and which ones it wants to start. he wants to stop.

Regent Glen Gallegos said he thinks the board is doing well given the challenges it has faced in recent years with the coronavirus pandemic, new board members and a new chairman.

“Are we functioning as a council? In many ways, but I think we can definitely do better,” he said.

The Board of Regents retreat continues until about 1 p.m. Friday.

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