Date of Award


Degree Name

Educational Leadership


College of Education

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dennis M. Anderson

Second Advisor

Jerry Jones

Third Advisor

Fred Pauley


The purpose of this study was to analyze existing wage data to quantify the employment success of community and technical college graduates by program as an indicator of economic development in West Virginia. Data for the variables were obtained from archival databases and a cooperative agreement between state agencies. Descriptive statistics were utilized to examine employment rates, range of earnings, and employment in-industry of community and technical college graduates from 23 programs from 1997 to 2002. Graduates in the health fields demonstrated both the highest and lowest ratios of employment, with the mean employment rate for all programs of 68.12 percent. The average annual wage of all programs was $24,993.41, with six of the seven programs in the health professions reporting earnings over the mean. Electrical Engineering Technology graduates also reported high range, $123,155.91, and mean, $40,432.46, earnings. The highest percentages of graduates working in-industry were in the Health Professions and Related Clinical Sciences area. The research thus indicates a higher level of economic development, or earnings, from graduates in the Health Professions and Related Clinical Sciences and Engineering Technology areas.


Economic development - Effect of education on.

Community college students - Employment.

Economic development - West Virginia.