Local News

Survey: Raleigh Among Most Educated In Country

Posted May 13, 2004 10:58 a.m. EDT

— Raleigh snared another top ranking. The state capital may have some of the smartest people in the country.

According to a survey released by the U.S. Census Bureau, almost half of all people living in Raleigh who are at least 25 years old have college degrees. But Mike Walden, an economist at North Carolina State University, said a well-educated population may not necessarily mean a better quality of life.

"Quality of life, of course, is in the eye of the beholder," he said. "You tend to see, perhaps, more restaurants per capita. Raleigh now virtually has every major national chain, store chain here."

"Just everything that's available here, I think it's an attractive place for people from all over the country," resident Adrienne Bailey said.

Having a highly educated population does not necessarily mean a lower crime rate. According to the State Bureau of Investigation, Wake County is among the top third most dangerous counties in the state. But Wake County has made great strides in education. Forbes magazine recently ranked Wake County schools third best in the country.

"I think Wake County educators would argue they have made great progress," Walden said.

According to the census survey, 48 percent of Raleigh residents have college degrees, second only to Seattle. The national average is just over 25 percent.