To answer that question, Goldstein and two labor economists analyzed Wisconsin unemployment claims data and quarterly wage records, plus information that Blackhawk Technical College provided (without names of students). The analysis identified 1,740 laid-off workers who enrolled in credit courses at Blackhawk between the summer of 2008 — when mass layoffs began — and the summer of 2010. It compared them with 30,777 others who collected unemployment benefits in the two Wisconsin counties from which Blackhawk draws most of its students, but who did not go to the college for retraining. Their analysis sought to find out how many in each group were working and how their earnings had changed since before the recent recession began. Read related article.