In very broad general terms, the relationship between education and the labor market in the United States is simple and straightforward. Young people who do not graduate from high school have little chance of fi nding a well-paying job that can lead to a middle-class income. They experience higher rates of unemployment and poverty (Mishel, Bernstein and Allegretto 2005). High school graduation is now considered a bare minimum for even modest employment. Students with no more than a high school degree also have very limited labor market options and are mostly found in unskilled or low skilled jobs. Individuals who complete some postsecondary education or who have a sub-baccalaureate degree such as an associate degree (usually two years after high school) or a certifi cate (less than two years after high school) end up in technical level or what might be considered skilled jobs. Access to professional and managerial jobs is increasingly limited to students with bachelor’s degrees and, in many cases, those jobs require postgraduate education.