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People get married for love these days.  This may seem like a "duh" statement, but over the past several decades there has been a creeping fear that women over 40 (especially college-educated women) who weren't married were doomed to a life without a spouse.  Well, for one thing it's never good to deal in absolutes; secondly, while you may remember Newsweek's prediction of dying in a terrorist attack before getting married after the age of 40 like many other women do, that outrageous article has been debunked thoroughly.

Recently, the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School has analyzed the trends of marriage, considering age, level of education and race, and found that the sanctity of marriage and having a happy ending are not in fact threatened by making it to the
big 4-0

According to the university's findings, women over 40 who have a college degree are two times more likely to get married in subsequent decade than women who have only graduated high school.  

As for marriage rates of women under 40, the level of education does not make any significant difference, as both college grads and high school graduates were nearly 90%.  Findings also show that college-educated women had the lowest rate of divorce, while women who never finished high school were least likely to get married.  It was also determined that college-educated women were happier with their marriages.

This last finding, in particular, debunks the Pew Research Center's study that asserted college-educated women were finding it increasingly difficult to meet an equal, suitable match.  

Race was also taken into consideration in the University of Pennsylvania's analysis.  They found that while 72% of African American college-educated women were married by age 40, only 63% of high school educated women are.  

According to Dr. Betsey Stevenson (one of the primary investigators in UPenn's study), the de facto translation for the findings are simple: people aren't running to the alter in the interest of financial security anymore.  People can wait longer to get hitched because these days the focus and purpose of marriage is to find a companion to spend your life with, regardless of their bank account and status.  Looks like we're really on the way to making "Happily Ever After" the standard.

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