I've always wondered if part of our dearth of college educated residents is due to the lack of higher education options. This is a statewide issue: we just don't have many colleges, let alone a diversity of college environments, compared to literally every other state this side of the Mississippi.
In other states the pattern involves a diversity of state and private colleges of different sizes and specialties all across the state. In North Carolina, for instance, it seems that every other town has its own college; the bigger cities have four or five or more. Both public and private colleges vary in size, specialty, and learning environment, and are spread across small towns, classic college towns, and major metro areas.
The options are much more limited in Florida. We have our two "big name" schools, but otherwise there's a much smaller proportion of colleges in small towns, and the bigger cities rarely have more than about two colleges of size. Instead of offering a variety of environments, the majority of our state universities are cultivating the same type of environment: enormous, heavy on research, and of course, football-equipped. Not everyone thrives in a school like that.
I imagine a lack of local options contributes to our best and brightest so often looking not only out of town, but out of state for college, and then not returning.