Ohio State Profile

Ohio Excels
Columbus, OH

Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation
Columbus, OH

Ohio Association of Community Colleges
Columbus, OH

Ohio Department of Higher Education
Columbus, OH

The PAST Foundation
Columbus, OH

Ohio Department of Education
Columbus, OH

Educational and Workforce Landscape

Secondary K–12

Governed by:
Ohio Department of Education (ODE) and the State Board of Education

Public school enrollment K–12:

Public school enrollment 9–12:

Graduation rate: 87%

CTE Participation rate:

CTE graduation rate: 91%


Governed by:
As of September 2023: Ohio Department of Education (ODE) and the State Board of Education

Enrollment/Completion Data:

  • Ohio State University is the largest university in Ohio, with over 67,000 students.
  • The University of Cincinnati is the second largest university in Ohio, with over 47,000 students.
  • Miami University is the third largest university in Ohio, with over 37,000 students.

Ohio’s most recent 6-year completion rates are as follows:

  • Overall = 66%
  • Public Universities = 70.7%
  • Public Community Colleges = 41.4%
  • Private Nonprofit Colleges and Universities = 75.4%

Number by Type of Schools

  • 2-year Community College: 37
  • 4-year Public University: 14
  • 4-year Private University: 53
  • 2-Year Technical College: 49 Ohio Technical Centers (OTC)


Workforce Agency:
Office of Workforce Development and Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation

Top Industries/Jobs:

  • Manufacturing
  • Aerospace & aviation
  • Food & Agribusiness
  • Automotive, Healthcare
  • Energy & Chemicals
  • Financial Services and Information

Job Openings to Worker Ratio
As of April 2023, the ratio of job openings to unemployed persons in Ohio was 0.5. This means that for every one unemployed person in Ohio, there were 0.5 job openings. This is a strong indication that the labor market in Ohio is tight, and that businesses are having difficulty finding qualified workers.

Points of Interest

The budget provides ODE with with new funding of $50.0 million in each fiscal year to establish a program to assist traditional districts, joint vocational school districts (JVSD), community schools, and STEM schools with
equipment purchases necessary to establish or expand career-technical education (CTE) programs, with priority for CTE programs that support careers on Ohio’s Top Jobs List, and to establish or expand credentialing programs that qualify for the existing Innovative Workforce Incentive Program (IWIP).

Separately, the budget appropriates $200.0 million in FY 2024 under the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission budget to support construction projects that establish or expand CTE programs.

$32 million over the bi-ennieum to support K12 students earning industry recognized credentials through exam reimbursement payment and the Innovative Workforce Incentive Program.

Career Awareness and Exploration funds are used by the lead district of each career-technical planning district (CTPD) for career awareness and exploration activities. Specifically, the lead district may use the funds for (1) delivery of career awareness programs to students in grades K-12, (2) provision of a common, consistent curriculum to students, (3) assistance to teachers in providing a career development curriculum to students, (4) development of a career development plan for each student, and (5) provision of opportunities for students to engage in activities, such as career fairs, hands-on experiences, and job shadowing, across all career pathways at each grade level. The lead district of the CTPD must use the funds in a manner consistent with the CTPD’s plan on file with ODE. The funds are paid on a per-pupil basis to the lead district of each CTPD based on the enrollment of the districts and schools with which the CTPD is affiliated. The budget increases the per-pupil amounts from $5 in FY 2023 to $7.50 in FY 2024 and $10 in FY 2025.

Ohio has a number of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), including Wilberforce University and Central State University. Ohio University was founded in 1804 and The Ohio State University was founded in 1870.
  • The system is funded by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services and is administered by the OhioMeansJobs Commission.
    • OhioMeansJobs is a statewide workforce development system that provides job training, career counseling, and placement services to Ohioans of all ages.
  • The Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation is a cabinet-level office that was created in 2019 to lead the state’s efforts to transform its workforce. It works with the Governor’s Executive Workforce Board.
  • The OWT’s mission is to “connect Ohio’s business, training, and education communities to build a dynamically skilled, productive, and purposeful workforce.”
  • The OWT’s programs focus on providing job training and education in high-demand fields, helping employers find qualified workers, and supporting entrepreneurs.

College & Career Pathways Successes

Pathway Successes

  • Innovative Workforce Incentive Program (IWIP): This program provides financial incentive to school districts to incentive students earning high value industry-recognized credentials. Over $34 million in incentive payments and startup grant funds have been allocated since it’s inception under the Innovative Workforce Incentive Program.
  • Regionally Aligned Priorities in Delivering Skills (RAPIDS): The Ohio Department of Higher Education (ODHE) will make strategic regional investments in equipment and facilities to develop and support postsecondary institutions’ workforce development projects that enhance the economic growth of students and businesses. The investments will directly impact the ability of the state of Ohio to retain and expand existing businesses, attract new enterprises, and further entrepreneurship by addressing regional talent and workforce needs. These regional investments (in a total of seven regions) will address regionally identified industry-specific occupation and skill requirements.
  • TechCred: This program provides training and certification to Ohio workers in high-demand technology fields. The goal of TechCred is to help businesses find qualified workers and to close the skills gap in Ohio’s workforce. In 2022, TechCred exceeded its goal to fund 20,000 industry-recognized credential.
  • College Credit Plus: This program allows Ohio high school students to earn college credits while still in high school. The goal of College Credit Plus is to increase the number of Ohioans with college degrees and to reduce the cost of college. In 2021, over 700,000 Ohio students participated in College Credit Plus. Data dashboard:
  • Business Advisory Councils (BACs): These councils are made up of business leaders from around Ohio. The goal of BACs is to provide input to the state on workforce development policies and programs. There are currently over 100 BACs in Ohio.
  • Career Awareness and Exploration State Funding: was designed to promote career readiness among students by providing resources for career exploration activities. It aimed to help students make informed decisions about their future careers by exposing them to various industries and career pathways.
  • Career-Technical Education Support and weighted state funding: (also known as Career and Technical Education or CTE) in Ohio focused on providing students with hands-on training and education in career-oriented fields. It aimed to prepare students for high-demand careers and offer pathways to post-secondary education or immediate employment.

Meet the Site Partners

Lead Organization: Ohio Excels

Ohio Excels is a nonpartisan coalition of business leaders committed to helping improve education for every student. The organization was created in 2018 on the belief that the unique insights and experiences of business leaders can add meaningful value in discussions among policymakers regarding Ohio’s education and workforce policies.
Ohio Excels. Every Student. Every Day. everybody's Business.

Students deserve more than just a diploma; they deserve a future of limitless possibilities. Together, we’re piloting strategies that transcend traditional education systems, leverage a multitude of state investments, and equip students with the holistic skills they need to thrive in work and life.

Cassie Palsgrove,
Director, K–12 Education Policy

Ohio Department of Higher Education

The Ohio Department of Higher Education is a Cabinet-level agency for the Governor of the State of Ohio that oversees higher education for the state. The agency’s main responsibilities include authorizing and approving new degree programs, managing state-funded financial aid programs and developing and advocating policies to maximize higher education’s contributions to the state and its citizens.

Postsecondary attainment provides a myriad of opportunities to graduates and is critical to the economic development of Ohio. Our Launch initiative is to develop and pilot innovative strategies to increase the number of Ohioans entering postsecondary pathways and completing credentials of value that address the workforce needs of the state. We are collaborating to create a future where education goes beyond the classroom and equips students with the skills and opportunities required for both career and life success.

Tom Sudkamp

Ohio Department of Education

The Ohio Department of Education is a diverse team of passionate, education-focused professionals dedicated to fulfilling the vision established in Each Child, Our Future, Ohio’s strategic plan for education. The vision is, “In Ohio, each child is challenged to discover and learn, prepared to pursue a fulfilling post-high school path and empowered to become a resilient, lifelong learner who contributes to society.” Ensuring this vision for each of Ohio’s 1.7 million students, in partnership with more than 240,000 educators across the state, is no small feat. Under the leadership of the superintendent of public instruction and governed by the State Board of Education, Department team members, in collaboration with a wide range of partners, are sharply focused on helping schools and districts continually improve to be the best they can be for each child. Equity and impact are core to every program, service and action. The Department’s work is well regarded both in Ohio and nationally for its innovative, leading-edge and forward-looking approach. When the Department succeeds, students succeed, communities succeed and Ohio succeeds.

Our dedication is to the development of every student. Through Launch, we’re working with state-level leaders to lead the charge in creating innovative pathways that reenvision the education-to-workforce journey, ensuring that students receive the knowledge, opportunities, and equitable support necessary for a prosperous future.

Graham Wood

Reference Links and More Information

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