Houston Economy Faces Steep Shortfall In Educated Workers

A new study by the Brookings Institution shows that Houston is behind most other U.S. metropolitan areas in terms of producing enough educated workers to meet demand.

The report shows that, overall, job openings in the nation’s 100 largest metro areas require more education than the average job possesses. In Houston, the demand for sufficiently educated workers exceeds supply by 8.3% — the tenth-worst showing in the country.

“It is a significant long-term problem for Houston.”

The Brookings Institution’s Jonathan Rothwell is author of the report.

“To a large extent, your industry mix ultimately conforms to your education. So if you lack that high-skilled, highly educated, entrepreneurial base, eventually your industry mix is going to suffer too.”

Rothwell says Houston employment is doing well in the short term, thanks to the energy industry and a relatively healthy housing market. But many oil and gas workers are expected to retire over the next few years, and not enough graduates are coming on line to replace them.

Bio photo of Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Business Reporter

Andrew Schneider joined KUHF in January 2011, after more than a decade as a print reporter for The Kiplinger Letter...