We’ve reported on the efforts to increase the number of Louisvillians with college degrees. This could be done by graduating existing residents or by attracting degree holders. Officials are aiming to do both.

The Competitive City Report compared Louisville to other cities for college graduates, but how does the state of Kentucky fair overall? Not too bad, compared to the rest of the south.

The Chronicle of Higher Education has posted an interactive map showing which states have the most degree holders between 25 and 34.

32.2% of Kentucky’s 25-34 year-olds are college graduates. That puts the commonwealth just ahead of Tennessee and every southern state west of Georgia. However, Kentucky lags behind nearby competitors Indiana, Ohio and North Carolina.

The most educated young people are on the east coast and the upper midwest. Nearly half of the young people (46.8% on average) in North Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa and Nebraska are college graduates. Maybe there’s something in the headwaters of the Mississippi. This concentration of working-age degree holders will be something to watch as the economy improves. Perhaps the northern midwest will become a hot spot for relocating and upstart businesses that are seeking young, smart workers.