According to new U.S. Census Bureau data, the number of 25-to 34-year-olds who have college degrees around the nation has gradually increased from 2009 to 2011.

The current college attainment rate for the nation is 39.3 percent. However, this would have to increase by 50 percent to fulfill President Obama's goal for America to become first in the world in the percentage of population who have graduated from college by 2020. The U.S. currently places 16th.

According to a state-by-state breakdown by the Census Bureau, here are the top 15 states with the best college completion rates as of 2010. All of them have at least 43 percent of its young residents holding a college degree, but only two states have over 50 percent. D.C., which was included in the study, beat out all of the states with an impressive 68.8 percent.

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  • Washington D.C.

    82,098 graduates, 68.8% of the population. *Washington, D.C. is not a state, but its figures are included in the data. <strong><em>Clarification: Language has been added to indicate that Washington, D.C., while not a state, was included in the census data.</strong></em>

  • Massachusetts

    454,219 graduates, 54.3% of the population

  • North Dakota

    43,893 graduates, 50.8% of the population

  • Minnesota

    350,909 graduates, 49.8% of the population Photo Credit: <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:UMN-NorthrupMall.jpg" target="_hplink">BenFranske</a>

  • New York

    1,302,196 graduates, 49.6% of the population

  • New Jersey

    520,299 graduates, 47.2% of the population Photo Credit: <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Bishop_House-Rutgers_University.jpg" target="_hplink">Lacwal12</a>

  • New Hampshire

    65,715 graduates, 46.0% of the population Photo Credit: <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Manch-DownTown.jpg" target="_hplink">Mikespenard</a>

  • Connecticut

    190,044 graduates, 45.9% of the population Photo Credit: <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Nhskyline_eastshore.jpg" target="_hplink">Versageek</a>

  • Iowa

    172,115 graduates, 45.5% of the population Photo Credit: <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Cleary_Walkway_with_the_Old_Capitol_in_the_background,_University_of_Iowa.JPG" target="_hplink">Magnus Manske</a>

  • Maryland

    339,891 graduates, 45.5% of the population Photo Credit: <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:UMD_stairway.JPG" target="_hplink">Bgervais</a>

  • Illinois

    798,362 graduates, 45.3% of the population

  • Virginia

    477,103 graduates, 44.6% of the population

  • Vermont

    30,737 graduates, 44.5% of the population Photo Credit: <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:UVM_Old_Mill_building_20040101.jpg" target="_hplink">Redjar</a>

  • Nebraska

    107,058 graduates, 44.2% of the population

  • Pennsylvania

    654,558 graduates, 43.9% of the population