One New Jersey town is getting national attention for landing on a list of America's least educated zip codes.

I had to dig deeper and look at the methodology used to come to this conclusion.

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247wallst.com recently published an article counting down the 50 least educated zip codes in the U.S.

The website went into detail with the criteria used to make this list.

We used ZIP Code Tabulation Areas — a Census geography type which defines areal representations of United States Postal Service ZIP codes (USPS ZIP codes do not define geographic boundaries but instead are a network of mail delivery routes in a service area). We refer to Census ZCTAs as ZIP codes.

Of the 33,120 ZIP codes the census publishes data for, 32,989 had boundaries that fell within one of the 50 states or the District of Columbia.

ZIP codes were excluded if bachelor’s degree or higher attainment rates were not available in the 2019 ACS, if the ZIP code’s 25 and older population was less than 1,000, or if the sampling error associated with a ZIP code’s data was deemed too high.

There were some surprises in the top 50.

Large towns like Houston and Phoenix actually ranked.

Now before we do the big reveal, let me just say that this list is pretty ridiculous.

I am a firm believer that level of education does not equal level of success in life.

For example, I only have a high school diploma. I never like school. I liked to talk, so here I am in radio. I've been in the business for over 20 years and I'd like to think that I'm doing ok.

I know plenty of "uneducated" people who are doing just fine. In fact, they are thriving.

In at #47 is Delmont, New Jersey.

Omnedon, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Omnedon, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
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This very small Cumberland County town of just shy of 3,000 got on this list based on the following:

  • Adults with at least a bachelor’s degree: 4.2%
  • Adults with at least a high school diploma or equivalent: 76.1% — 1,500th lowest of 20,112 ZIP codes (tied)
  • Median household income: $78,796 — 15,564th lowest of 20,099 ZIP codes
  • Estimated unemployment rate 2015-2019: 11.7% — 843rd highest of 20,109 ZIP codes (tied) 

Jersey gets enough bad press. I try to share every piece of good news. I'm not taking this seriously, neither should you.

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