PHOTO: Jayden Hubbard edits his video inside the Center for Innovation in Media at MTSU during a journalism camp for high school students in July of 2018./MTSU photo courtesy Jimmy Hart
By BROOKE WANSER
Due to an emphasis on higher education, Nashville became known as the Athens of the South in the 1800s. But according to new data, that title may now more closely fit another Southern stronghold.
In personal finance website WalletHub’s comparison of the 150 largest Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) in the country, the Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro-Franklin area came in 61st, with a total score of 49.86.
Home to Duke University, the Durham-Chapel Hill area of North Carolina came in fourth, with a 72.77 score.
The University of Michigan’s home base of Ann Arbor received top accolades, with a 92.57 score.
The study was undertaken as a way to understand which business communities educated people are seeking to move and put their degrees to use in.
Educational attainment took into account levels of education, including high school graduation rates and advanced degrees.
The quality of education and attainment gap looked at the quality of public and higher education schools, number of summer learning opportunities per capita, and gender and racial gaps.
The Nashville MSA is ranked 78 for the educational attainment gap measure.
With universities like MTSU, Vanderbilt and Belmont, the Nashville metropolitan area has a wealth of higher education resources.
The study also took into account both the overwrought Metro Nashville Public Schools and Williamson County’s top-ranked public school system.
Data for the survey came from the U.S. Census Bureau, GreatSchools.org, Education Cities.org, Yelp and WalletHub research.
In Tennessee, Williamson outpaces the other 94 counties with the most educated workforce.
But with a burgeoning population and teacher shortage, newcomers could soon face challenges in the same school system.