Career Colleges Help Bridge America’s Skilled Worker Gap According to Imagine America Fact Book

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Washington, DC (March 12, 2013) – Employment in America is shifting away from goods-producing to service-based industries – a change that is anticipated to create nearly 18 million new jobs. Jobs requiring an Associate degree or vocational award are projected to increase by 35 percent from 2010 to 2020. Currently, career colleges serve more than 3.9 million students: many who are considered non-traditional students. For the United States to remain competitive in the global economy, career colleges must remain a valued part of higher education.

The Imagine America Foundation is pleased to announce the release of its Fact Book 2013: A Profile of Career Colleges and Universities. Prepared by leading industry analysts, the Fact Book contains research and analysis of important trends in the career college sector of higher education. The Fact Book presents a comprehensive look at the for-profit and career college sector of higher education, as well as a comparison of public and private two- and four-year institutions.

“Anyone who has uncertainties about the career education sector only needs to read the Imagine America Foundation’s Fact Book to understand the achievements of the sector and its students,” said Robert L. Martin, President/CEO of the Imagine America Foundation.  

The 2013 edition presents an abundance of important facts about career colleges.  Growth in the health services and business support will generate an increasing number of new jobs, most of which will require postsecondary training or an Associate degree.  Over 5.7 million jobs, an increase of 33 percent from 2010 to 2020, are projected to come from the healthcare and social assistance fields.  

How are career colleges meeting the need?

  • Career colleges are helping fill the workforce by awarding 49 percent of health degrees and certificates in 2010-11.
  • The top six fastest-growing occupations requiring an Associate degree are in healthcare fields; 71 percent of all cardiovascular technologists, 54 percent of all diagnostic medical sonographers and 53 percent of all veterinary technology awards were conferred by career colleges in 2010-11.
  • Of the fastest-growing occupations requiring a certificate, the top three – dental assistants, emergency medical technicians, and heating and air conditioning mechanics – are also projected to have the highest number of new jobs between 2010 and 2020.  Career colleges conferred 73 percent of dental assistants and 77 percent of heating, air conditioning mechanics certificates in 2010-11.

The Fact Book 2013 is made possible by contributions from ED MAP and other supporters of the Imagine America Foundation’s 21st Century Workforce Fund.

Throughout the Fact Book, you’ll find even more achievements that are quite different from what you might have heard or read about this sector of higher education.   For more information about the Fact Book go to or contact Robert L. Martin, President and CEO of the Imagine America Foundation at 571.267.3012 or

About the Imagine America Foundation
The Imagine America Foundation (IAF), established in 1982, is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing scholarships for education, research and training support for the career college sector. Since its inception, the Foundation has provided over $75 million in scholarship and award support for graduating high school seniors, adult learners and U.S. military personnel attending career colleges nationwide through its award-winning Imagine America(R) programs. The Foundation also publishes vital research publications for the higher education sector, honors achievement in career education and offers comprehensive employee development programs through its Center for Excellence in Education. For more information about the Imagine America Foundation's programs, please visit