Least educated counties in Wisconsin

Written by:
May 14, 2022
Jeff the quiet // Wikimedia Commons

Least educated counties in Wisconsin

The value of traditional education can vary widely across the country. While a college degree has long been viewed as a critical step toward the American dream, growing costs have led many students to reconsider the return-on-investment of higher education. Meanwhile, local economies and individual circumstances can push others toward learning a trade or entering the workforce early.

These considerations aside, national statistics show a clear difference in earnings as they relate to educational attainment, as college graduates typically earn 65% more than those with only a high school degree.

To help understand areas with the lowest educational attainment, Stacker compiled a list of the least educated counties in Wisconsin using data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Counties are ranked by the lowest percent of the population 25 years and over that has a Bachelor’s degree or higher. Ties are broken by the highest percent with less than high school diploma.

Keep read on for a look at the least-educated counties in Wisconsin.

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Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikimedia Commons

#50. Marathon County

- 25.4% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 8.2% ($28,105 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 34.3% ($33,199)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 32.1% ($38,145)
- Bachelor's degree: 17.3% ($50,516)
- Graduate or professional degree: 8.2% ($66,510)

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gillfoto // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Racine County

- 25.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.5% ($25,718 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 31.6% ($35,042)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.7% ($38,740)
- Bachelor's degree: 16.6% ($55,000)
- Graduate or professional degree: 8.6% ($72,205)

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Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources // Flickr

#48. Sheboygan County

- 25.1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 6.9% ($31,110 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35.9% ($36,731)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 32.2% ($40,016)
- Bachelor's degree: 17.6% ($52,803)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7.5% ($66,563)

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Tgkrause // Wikimedia Commons

#47. Iowa County

- 24.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 4.8% ($32,105 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35.3% ($34,902)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 35.3% ($39,368)
- Bachelor's degree: 15.9% ($52,271)
- Graduate or professional degree: 8.7% ($63,312)

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Foreverwiser // Wikimedia Commons

#46. Sawyer County

- 24.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 7.7% ($16,048 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 34% ($24,617)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 34.1% ($31,255)
- Bachelor's degree: 15.1% ($43,616)
- Graduate or professional degree: 9.2% ($53,355)

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Nfarmakes // Wikimedia Commons

#45. Douglas County

- 24.1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 6.3% ($24,087 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 31.1% ($31,461)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 38.5% ($38,022)
- Bachelor's degree: 16.3% ($46,843)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7.8% ($58,547)

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bogdanstepniak // Wikimedia Commons

#44. Sauk County

- 24.1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.1% ($30,015 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 33.9% ($31,384)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33% ($38,493)
- Bachelor's degree: 16.7% ($48,824)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7.4% ($61,475)

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Corey Coyle // Wikimedia Commons

#43. Grant County

- 23.8% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 7.7% ($26,234 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35.1% ($31,752)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.3% ($36,006)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.9% ($45,489)
- Graduate or professional degree: 8.9% ($57,487)

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SD Dirk // Wikimedia Commons

#42. Green County

- 23.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 7.6% ($32,267 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35.5% ($32,923)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.4% ($38,095)
- Bachelor's degree: 16.1% ($51,998)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7.5% ($66,076)

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Downspec // Wikimedia Commons

#41. Columbia County

- 23.3% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 7.3% ($30,290 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 33.7% ($37,268)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 35.7% ($43,862)
- Bachelor's degree: 16.3% ($53,925)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7% ($60,682)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#40. Fond du Lac County

- 23.1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 8.2% ($27,718 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 36.1% ($36,474)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 32.8% ($39,589)
- Bachelor's degree: 16.1% ($50,085)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7% ($61,803)

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Bjoertvedt // Wikimedia Commons

#39. Washburn County

- 23% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 7.8% ($24,808 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 33.6% ($30,989)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 35.7% ($31,155)
- Bachelor's degree: 15.5% ($42,639)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7.4% ($54,392)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#38. Vernon County

- 22.4% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 10.6% ($25,139 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 37.7% ($30,662)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 29.3% ($35,078)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.7% ($44,007)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7.7% ($56,420)

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Visit Beloit // Wikimedia Commons

#37. Rock County

- 22.1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.2% ($27,636 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 36.1% ($31,624)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 32.5% ($37,425)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.7% ($50,668)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7.4% ($63,770)

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TheCatalyst31 // Wikimedia Commons

#36. Wood County

- 21.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 7.3% ($30,079 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 38% ($31,421)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33% ($36,626)
- Bachelor's degree: 13.5% ($49,386)
- Graduate or professional degree: 8.1% ($70,653)

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Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikimedia Commons

#35. Chippewa County

- 21% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 7.2% ($26,592 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35.4% ($31,501)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 36.4% ($36,729)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.4% ($48,796)
- Graduate or professional degree: 6.6% ($58,804)

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123dieinafire // Wikimedia Commons

#34. Polk County

- 20.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 6.2% ($31,224 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 37.3% ($32,874)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 35.6% ($40,397)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.5% ($49,211)
- Graduate or professional degree: 6.4% ($59,472)

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Dramsey57 // Wikimedia Commons

#33. Burnett County

- 20.8% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 6.9% ($25,101 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 36.4% ($28,554)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 36% ($34,764)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.4% ($42,344)
- Graduate or professional degree: 6.4% ($53,625)

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Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikimedia Commons

#32. Pepin County

- 20.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9% ($26,801 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 38% ($31,572)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 32.4% ($38,919)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.5% ($43,106)
- Graduate or professional degree: 6.1% ($62,396)

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Wineinger // Wikimedia Commons

#31. Monroe County

- 20.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.1% ($30,653 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 36.8% ($32,834)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.5% ($39,039)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.3% ($47,719)
- Graduate or professional degree: 6.3% ($58,342)

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Appraiser // Wikimedia Commons

#30. Barron County

- 20.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.8% ($26,429 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 36.1% ($30,574)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.5% ($34,511)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.1% ($49,004)
- Graduate or professional degree: 6.5% ($59,489)

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Jonathunder // Wikimedia Commons

#29. Manitowoc County

- 20.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 8% ($27,593 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 38.6% ($35,427)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.2% ($39,140)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.5% ($49,895)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.8% ($64,101)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Green Lake County

- 20.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 10.3% ($32,863 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 38.7% ($31,869)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 31% ($37,038)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.2% ($49,760)
- Graduate or professional degree: 6% ($61,964)

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Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Iron County

- 20% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 5.4% ($31,458 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 33.7% ($25,817)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 40.9% ($30,329)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.3% ($45,341)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.7% ($53,929)

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Jimmy Emerson // Wikimedia Commons

#26. Florence County

- 19.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 6.9% ($19,423 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 37.6% ($26,528)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 35.5% ($34,145)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.2% ($50,556)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.7% ($46,964)

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self // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Waupaca County

- 19.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 8.2% ($26,163 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 40.8% ($35,132)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 31.1% ($39,627)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.3% ($46,413)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.6% ($57,794)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Ashland County

- 19.8% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 7.7% ($25,417 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 37% ($24,432)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 35.4% ($32,243)
- Bachelor's degree: 13.1% ($41,090)
- Graduate or professional degree: 6.8% ($56,643)

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Chris Rand // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Kewaunee County

- 19.4% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 6.9% ($30,344 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 39.9% ($35,439)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.7% ($41,642)
- Bachelor's degree: 14.5% ($50,615)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.9% ($63,429)

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Jonathunder // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Buffalo County

- 19.3% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.1% ($30,161 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 40.4% ($33,644)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 31.2% ($40,474)
- Bachelor's degree: 13.4% ($43,219)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.9% ($60,500)

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Jon Roanhaus // Wikimedia Commons

#21. Trempealeau County

- 19.3% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.3% ($31,462 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 39% ($32,842)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 32.3% ($39,079)
- Bachelor's degree: 13.9% ($47,747)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.4% ($57,198)

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Corey Coyle // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Richland County

- 19% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.8% ($26,420 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 40.8% ($32,735)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 30.3% ($36,092)
- Bachelor's degree: 11.8% ($40,545)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7.3% ($54,886)

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Calvin Beale // Wikimedia Commons

#19. Lafayette County

- 18.8% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.2% ($31,288 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 40.5% ($32,009)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 31.4% ($37,176)
- Bachelor's degree: 12.7% ($49,653)
- Graduate or professional degree: 6.2% ($57,353)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Lincoln County

- 18.4% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 8% ($28,542 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 38.1% ($33,351)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 35.4% ($38,871)
- Bachelor's degree: 12.7% ($51,124)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.7% ($61,936)

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Jimmy Emerson // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Crawford County

- 18.4% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 8.6% ($21,774 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 39.7% ($29,077)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.2% ($34,284)
- Bachelor's degree: 12.9% ($45,132)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.5% ($50,956)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Menominee County

- 17.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 8.1% ($24,125 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 42.6% ($27,429)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 31.4% ($26,098)
- Bachelor's degree: 10% ($43,320)
- Graduate or professional degree: 7.9% ($49,250)

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Doc Searls // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Dodge County

- 17% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.2% ($30,689 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 40.9% ($36,345)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 32.9% ($40,585)
- Bachelor's degree: 12.1% ($48,070)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.9% ($60,588)

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TheCatalyst31 // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Oconto County

- 16.8% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.5% ($31,167 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 41.7% ($35,749)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 31.9% ($39,850)
- Bachelor's degree: 12.4% ($51,416)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.4% ($61,779)

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Jeff the quiet // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Langlade County

- 16.7% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 9.8% ($22,232 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 42.3% ($30,560)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 31.3% ($33,070)
- Bachelor's degree: 10.4% ($38,902)
- Graduate or professional degree: 6.2% ($50,625)

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Jeff the quiet // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Rusk County

- 16.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 12% ($25,318 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 41.5% ($30,835)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 29.9% ($34,576)
- Bachelor's degree: 11.5% ($39,122)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5% ($54,083)

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Billertl // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Price County

- 16.5% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 8.2% ($16,250 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 40.4% ($31,926)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 34.8% ($32,188)
- Bachelor's degree: 12.3% ($42,969)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.2% ($50,673)

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I, the copyright holder of this work, hereby publish it under the following license: // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Waushara County

- 16.3% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 13.2% ($25,442 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 42% ($31,780)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 28.5% ($35,941)
- Bachelor's degree: 10.5% ($44,783)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.8% ($59,412)

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Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Marinette County

- 15.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 8.9% ($23,611 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 41.6% ($32,224)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.6% ($35,865)
- Bachelor's degree: 11.3% ($48,110)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.6% ($68,438)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Shawano County

- 15.7% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 8.6% ($29,107 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 44.8% ($32,357)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 30.9% ($35,779)
- Bachelor's degree: 10.2% ($48,351)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.5% ($56,572)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Marquette County

- 15.1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 10.9% ($27,059 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 40.9% ($32,027)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33% ($35,869)
- Bachelor's degree: 10.5% ($46,466)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.6% ($55,104)

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Jeff the quiet // Wikimedia Commons

#6. Taylor County

- 15.1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 11.6% ($28,668 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 43.4% ($34,765)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 29.8% ($34,846)
- Bachelor's degree: 10.4% ($47,516)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.7% ($66,146)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Forest County

- 14.7% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 11.2% ($17,250 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 39.2% ($26,299)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 35% ($31,839)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.8% ($41,591)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.9% ($53,083)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Jackson County

- 14.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 10.2% ($28,309 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 41.6% ($30,787)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.7% ($36,743)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.5% ($42,017)
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.1% ($58,750)

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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Adams County

- 13.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 12.5% ($22,168 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 42.6% ($25,390)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 31.1% ($31,746)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.2% ($39,389)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.6% ($55,000)

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Nathanthiel // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Juneau County

- 13.7% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 11.5% ($29,167 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 41.5% ($30,984)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.3% ($34,486)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.7% ($45,655)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.1% ($55,787)

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Jeff the quiet // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Clark County

- 12.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 17.8% ($30,607 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 39.8% ($32,719)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 29.9% ($36,466)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.9% ($47,056)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.7% ($54,185)

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