Young college-educated Minnesotans tend to leave rural Minnesota, a new Minnesota Planning report shows. Among the regions of the state, only the growing metropolitan counties, including the Twin Cities and Olmsted and Benton counties, had more college graduates in their 20s who moved in than out.
Of the young college graduates who moved to growing metropolitan counties, about two-thirds came from other states or foreign countries and about one-third came from elsewhere in Minnesota. The exchange with other Minnesota areas strongly favored the Twin Cities, though: five times as many young graduates moved to the growing metropolitan region from elsewhere in Minnesota as moved in the opposite direction. Graduates who left the Twin Cities generally left the state rather than moving to somewhere else in Minnesota.
The study, which used data from the 1990 census, focused on the migration patterns of 20- to 29-year-olds, because this is an age when people move frequently and are making important initial career and residence decisions. State Demographer Tom Gillaspy said the migration trends are significant because they affect the educational level of the labor force in different parts of the state.
The report shows that Minnesota as a whole had a slight gain of college graduates in their 20s, with the greatest net contributions coming from bordering states and foreign countries. The state lost young graduates to states beyond the Midwest, particularly to the Sun Belt.
Gillaspy said the 1990 census data may be our only opportunity to look at how education is related to migration. Because of concerns over costs and the length of the form, the migration question is unlikely to be included in the year 2000 census.