Building an Innovative Workforce Built On Leadership in St. Joseph, Mo.

St. Joseph’s schools and higher educational opportunities are focused on giving students and workers the technologically-advanced skills they need to make an impact in today’s workforce and future generations.

  • The majority (87 percent) of the area’s adult population has a high school education or has continued on with further educational training.
  • As a result of a community-wide partnership, St. Joseph’s high school graduation rate is 82 percent.
  • In the City of St. Joseph, more than 27 percent of St. Joseph workers have earned a post-secondary degree and across Buchanan County, 43 percent have earned educational degrees.
Education Rates, Buchanan County:
High School Diploma: 25,514
Some college or Associate’s Degree: 20,457
Bachelor’s Degree: 8,263
Graduate Degree: 4,104

Universities and Colleges in St. Joseph or within a Short Drive

Missouri Western State University

Missouri WesternLocated in St. Joseph, Missouri, MWSU has a student population of over 6,000. Degree programs abound from highly technical fields to liberal arts and sciences. The university offers certificates, associate degrees, four-year baccalaureate programs and a number of master’s degree programs, including those in applied science and arts. The university houses the Bond Science and Technology Incubator, a $2.5 million, multi-tenant research facility in which MWSU students collaborate with business leaders and area universities.

Discover more information at

Northwest Missouri State University

  • Location: Maryville, Missouri (45 miles north of St. Joseph)
  • Enrollment: 6,800 students

Discover more information at

Benedictine College

  • Location: Atchison, Kansas (20 miles southwest of St. Joseph)
  • Enrollment: 1,800 students
  • Liberal arts residential university offering Executive MBA in Leadership and Executive Master of Business Administration, among other master’s programs for professionals

Discover more at

American Business & Technology University


  • Location: St. Joseph, Missouri (Online/Interactive)
  • Offers numerous online-based degree programs, in areas including IT, business administration, criminal justice or medical fields.

Discover more at

Other Educational Opportunities in St. Joseph

Metropolitan Community College

  • Location: five locations in the Kansas City area, one location in the Saint Joseph area
  • Enrollment: 18,000
  • MCC is one of the premier community colleges in the nation and offers 80 degree programs, with strong transfer options.

Discover more at

Hillyard Technical Center

Hillyard Technical Center is a public school that meets both industrial and individual needs in areas such as architecture, computers, manufacturing, engineering, robotics, automotive, medical technology and dental hygiene. Most classes are articulated and students can earn up to 30 credit hours after successful completion of their program.

  • Location: St. Joseph, Missouri
  • Enrollment: 650 daytime, 1,000 evening
  • Longstanding history as a career center in St. Joseph, meeting both industrial and individual needs in areas such as architecture, computers, business technology, computer-aided drafting, construction technology, precision machine technology, welding and medical technology.
  • Active partner with area high schools, helping establish students on a career path for post-high school.

Discover more at

Parochial/Private Grade and High Schools

Many options are available for quality parochial and private education in St. Joseph. St. Joseph’s private educational opportunities include several top-ranked elementary schools, middle schools and high schools, whose students consistently score high in college entrance exams. Parents seeking a private school education for their children may send their kids, pre-kindergarten through high school, to a number of quality schools. Catholic education is offered at Bishop LeBlond High School, Cathedral of St. Joseph, St. Francis Xavier, and St. James schools. Christian education is offered at St. Joseph Christian School, St. Paul Lutheran, and South Park Christian Academy.

University of Missouri – Kansas City

  • Location: Kansas City, Mo. (60 miles south of St. Joseph)
  • Enrollment: 15,000 students
  • Offers undergraduate programs as well as schools of law, medicine, business, pharmacy, dentistry for those wishing to pursue higher educations.

Discover more at

Workforce Development Initiatives

A Community Starting Young for a Motivated Workforce Success by Six

An initiative by the United Way of Greater St. Joseph, this is a community-based movement of public and private partners working together to deliver proven solutions for children. The goal is to ensure that all children ages zero to 6 are healthy, nurtured and ready to succeed. Check out for more information. Additionally, Success by Six launched the Family Friendly Employer program in 2008. The program encourages employers to evaluate programs or policies to help working parents better manage the stress in balancing work and home.

My Success Event

Area businesses promote career opportunities available to more than 2,100 area students from 33 Northwest Missouri high schools. Held in October each year, representatives from more than 80 businesses meet one on one with students and encourage them to develop a career path. Through a career laboratory, they share the educational and technical skills necessary to pursue their career interests in the local economy. By clicking on, you can learn more.

The data contained in this website is for information purposes.  Although steps have been taken to guard its accuracy and up-to-date nature, the St. Joseph Chamber of Commerce assumes no legal responsibility for the informational content contained herein.