Report: Michigan's University Research Corridor Ranks First in U.S. in Medical Degrees, Total Degrees Granted


Michigan’s University Research Corridor (Michigan State University, University of Michigan, and Wayne State University) ranks No. 1 in medical degrees, second in advanced degrees in high-tech fields, and first in total degrees awarded when compared to research clusters across the nation, according to a report released today at the Mackinac Policy Conference.

“(Medical and advanced degrees are important because) they meet employers’ needs, support high-tech entrepreneurship, generate tax dollars, and provide access to higher quality health care and enhanced quality of life for all Michigan residents,” says Jeff Mason, executive director of the University Research Corridor.

The study, compiled by East Lansing-based Anderson Economic Group, says the University Research Corridor spends $2.1 billion in research and development annually, accounting for 93 percent of all academic research and development in the state.

More than half of the alumni of the three universities live in Michigan and comprise a third of the state bachelor’s degree holders and advanced degree holders 25 and over. The report says the research corridor granted about 32,600 degrees in 2013, ranking first among peer clusters. About 9,200 of those degrees were in high-demand.

The study found students from Michigan are more likely to live in the state later in life if they attend a university here. Michigan cities where college graduates choose to live are Ann Arbor, where 82 percent of the population has a college degree, and East Lansing, with 85 percent of the population having degrees, along with Midtown Detroit (31 percent), Michigan (27 percent), and Detroit (13 percent).

According to the report, native Michigan college graduates are three times more likely to start their career in the state if they graduate from a Michigan college or university. Even during a deep recession, nearly 75 percent of native Michigan URC graduates stayed in the state and 20 percent of out-of-state graduates.