The institute looked at 222 metro areas in the U.S. with student populations of 15,000 or more, and broke them down into four tiers -- major metros, midsize metros, smaller cities and college towns.Researchers then considered 12 criteria, including student concentration, student diversity, arts and leisure, degree attainment, cost of living, earning potential and unemployment rate.The Buffalo region scored particularly well for student diversity, thanks to the University at Buffalo, which has a high concentration of international students."City accessibility here is good, and the city also gets a comparatively high score for arts and leisure offerings," the institute wrote about the Buffalo region.Not surprisingly, though, the region scored poorly when it came to the economy."An unfavorable brain drain score suggests that many of the young adults in the area eventually leave," the institute wrote. "Scores for earning potential, entrepreneurial activity, and cost of living are also relatively low."
While the area finished fifth in the percentage of the population between ages 25 and 34 with at least a bachelor’s degree, its percentage of total population with at least a bachelor’s degree declined.“Without enough high-tech companies to absorb the talent produced by those schools, Rochester falls victim to brain drain when they leave,” the report adds.
The brain drain index ("Year-over-year ratio of population with B.A. degree living in the area") doesn't tell us whether the problem is inmigration or outmigration. It's the change of educational attainment rate for one year. Both Buffalo and Rochester might do a better job than average in retention. Those numbers won't land Collegia accounts.
I'd bet that the big brain gainers benefit from talent attraction, not better retention. Note all the winning college destinations in Utah and the impressive brain gain. We also know that Western New York struggles with inmigration, not outmigration. Give Rochester's relatively high "degree attainment", I'm confident that this region already does a great job of retention. There isn't a need to hire Collegia.