Wyoming Excels

What We Do

Engaging business more directly in education

Wyoming Excels is an effort to engage business more directly in education.  This initial three-year initiative has been generously supported by The Daniels Fund and John P. Ellbogen Foundation.  EXCELS is a program of the Wyoming Business Alliance/Wyoming Heritage Foundation

Our Over-arching Goal:

Wyoming EXCELS recognizes Wyoming’s challenges and choices regarding a growing economy:

1.) grow and keep our own;
2.) import talent;
3.) or allow for business expansions to go to other states. These choices have far-reaching implications. They affect opportunities for our graduates and our homegrown workforce.  Therefore,

To be competitive and having a growing economy, 68% of Wyoming’s adults should hold a post-secondary certificate, license or degree by the year 2025. 




Business needs to be involved in education. These cogs  illustrate the essential and dynamic interactions within an ideal education continuum—activities which underlie the fundamentals of Wyoming EXCELS and why business must move from being a bystander to an active partner. Typically education decisions center around schools, with the focus on students (children and youth), with families and communities to follow.  Business is not normally a pro-active partner.

Did You know...?

  • Wyoming ranks 7th nationally in per-student funding (excluding school construction), but 37th in high school graduation rate
  • K-12 per pupil spending in Wyoming is $15,700; Montana is $11,000
  • Compared to neighboring states, Wyoming’s 79% high school graduation rate is second from the bottom; Montana’s is 86%
  • Only two out of 10 high school graduates will earn a post-secondary degree
  • More than 6 of 10 Wyoming jobs will require some post-secondary education by 2020
  • 58 percent of Wyomingites had a post-secondary degree in 2013, – 7 percent below the national goal
  • 48 percent of fourth graders are proficient or above in NAEP math; 52% are not
  • 41 percent of fourth graders are proficient or above in NAEP reading; 59% are not
  • 39% of kindergarten students start school with the necessary skills and behaviors to be successful; 61% do not
  • Wyoming has 94,000 kindergarten through high school students
  • 52 percent of school districts serve fewer than 1,000 students
  • 37 percent of students participate in free or reduced lunch; 63% don’t

Source: Wyoming Excels’ 2017 Field Guide to Education and 2013-2016 Wyoming education and state statistics