60% by 2025
In 2009, Lumina Foundation released its first strategic plan, based on the goal that 60% of Americans obtain a high-quality postsecondary degree or credential by 2025—a goal we now call Goal 2025. Much has changed even in the short time since that plan was written, both in the external environment and in what we have learned from our work. This strategic plan—intended to guide our work for the next four years from 2013 through 2016—reflects those changes:
Throughout the nation, there is a much broader and deeper understanding of the need to increase postsecondary attainment. Some version of Goal 2025 has been adopted by or is a major influence on the federal government, a majority of states, national higher education associations, many individual colleges and universities, and communities around the U.S. including several large metropolitan regions. At the same time, however, the resources available to support new initiatives to increase attainment in traditional ways are severely constrained.
- We have learned much about the challenges in increasing attainment, as well as promising approaches for doing so. We know the factors that influence student success in postsecondary education and how more students could receive the support they need to succeed. We have learned how to help higher education institutions and systems become more productive to serve more students. We have learned the necessity of assuring the quality of degrees and other credentials in terms of student learning and how this might be done. We have also learned a great deal about influencing public policy at the state and federal levels and mobilizing higher education institutions, communities, and regions to increase attainment.
Between 2009 and 2025 lie 16 years. Our first strategic plan covered the first quarter—the first four years—and this strategic plan will take us halfway to 2025. We have set the stage for reaching the goal, but we believe over the next four years we must do two things: develop a clear understanding of what we must do to create a system of higher education that can reach much higher levels of attainment, and make real progress toward the 60% goal.