Kentucky: Council on Postsecondary Education

Council on Postsecondary Education

Press Release Date:  Wednesday, October 17, 2007  
Contact Information:  Sue Patrick
Phone: 502-573-1555 ext. 308
Cell: 502-330-6596

Note to Editors: More photos available upon request

(FRANKFORT, Ky.) –A plan released today at a meeting of the Council on Postsecondary Education details how Kentucky plans to increase the number of college graduates to the national average by 2020.

Double the Numbers: Kentucky’s Plan to Increase College Graduates explains that increasing bachelor’s degrees is the quickest, most direct way for Kentucky to increase its economic prosperity and meet the goals of the Kentucky Postsecondary Education Improvement Act of 1997. The plan includes five statewide strategies as well as a regional approach that sets targets for each strategy in nine regions across the state.

The Double the Numbers Plan follows the 2005 release of the Council’s strategic plan, Five Questions, One Mission: Kentucky’s Public Agenda for Postsecondary Education, and outlines the specific strategies to increase degree production.

“This plan is ambitious, but attainable,” said Brad Cowgill, interim president of the Council on Postsecondary Education. “Reaching our 2020 goal will require a coordinated, collaborative effort from education and business partners across the state and all Kentuckians will benefit from this effort.” 

The five strategies target Kentuckians at every point of the education pipeline¬— high school students, GED graduates, adult learners, transfer students as well as traditional college students.

“We must reach outside the traditional pipeline to meet this goal,” said John Turner, chair of the Council on Postsecondary Education. “Our demographic reality is that everyone can contribute value to our standard of living.”

Research shows that college graduates tend to earn more money, are more engaged citizens and are healthier. For states, more college graduates mean more tax revenue, less incarceration, less poverty and less unemployment. 

“I am encouraged with the Double the Numbers goal,” said Dave Adkisson, president and CEO of the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce. “This goal gives us all something we can rally around and work toward.”

"Doubling the Numbers is the means to a transformed Kentucky—educationally, economically, medically, culturally, socially and scientifically. It is simply essential for Kentucky to compete in today’s global economy,” Adkisson added.

For a copy of Double the Numbers: Kentucky’s Plan to Increase College Graduates, visit the Council Web site at

In other business, the Council:

  • Reviewed the Council’s 2008-10 discussion budget, which includes a proposal for a fund to provide a financial incentive to public four-year universities to increase bachelor’s degree production and for KCTCS to increase the number of associate degrees and transfers to four-year institutions.  The discussion budget also proposes funding for Kentucky’s innovative Bucks for Brains program, improvements in developmental education, and support for statewide initiatives that support the goals of the Postsecondary Education Improvement Act of 1997.
  • Reviewed a draft of a 10-year report of Kentucky’s Endowment Match Program, better known as the Bucks for Brains program. The report shows the program has resulted in more than $282 million in private gifts to public universities and a 47 percent increase in annual giving at UK and UofL.

Kentucky’s postsecondary and adult education system is improving the economic vitality of the Commonwealth and the lives of Kentuckians. By raising educational attainment to the national average by 2020, Kentucky will attract higher wage and knowledge-based business and industry and the overall quality of life for Kentuckians will improve with higher incomes and levels of employment, better health, less obesity, more volunteerism, and lower crime and public assistance rates.


Last Updated 10/24/2007