Graduation. There are some days you thought it might never come. But here it is and now what? You literally have your whole life ahead of you, so where do you plan on living it? Some grads have their heart set on a place already, but for the rest of you who are still trying to figure out where to go there are a whole range of great cities throughout the United States. You have options, we have ideas. Here are five cities that recent college grads might want to consider:
Our nation’s capital, the seat of government. That means government jobs. There may be no more economically impenetrable field than federal employment, so you won’t need to worry about getting laid off due to a lousy economy. Not to mention that the government needs individuals from all backgrounds to fill a wide variety of positions. The great news is that D.C. is second only to New York when it comes to entry-level jobs available and the unemployment rate there is 4.9%. It’s not the most affordable place on our list, however, with a 2BR apartment averaging about $3,000 a month.
What if I told you there was a city as cool, hip, and culturally relevant as New York or Los Angeles, with an excellent job market, and it was actually affordable for recent grads? Take a close look at Austin and you’ll realize it’s become of the more popular destinations for young people right out of school, particularly as a burgeoning hub for the tech industry with mega-corporations like Apple, AT&T, Google, and PayPal all located there. What it lacks in public transportation it more than makes up for in BBQ and the Alamo Drafthouse movie theater chain. You ACU Online grads probably know how great Austin is already as it’s just a scant three hours away from Abilene.
The Gateway to the Midwest. Pittsburgh is quickly becoming one of the more popular cities to live in right now, offering terrific dining and cultural attractions that are on par with some of the best the country has to offer, while still remaining one of the most affordable cities to live in right now. It’s a young city, with nearly a quarter of its residents in the age group of 20-29 years old and it’s emerging as another city for the tech industry with Intel, Google, and Apple all located there in some capacity. It’s also home to the NFL’s Pittsburgh Steelers, the team with the most Super Bowl wins in history. So sports fans will love it too.
Music City. The nickname just sounds like it’s a city filled with fun. It’s also home to some of the most vital industries in the country with healthcare, biotech, publishing, and insurance leading the way. But commercial shipping is the real industry giant here with over 80 miles of interstate freeways leading through the city. College grads can find it affordable to live here as well, rated with a 91.2 cost of living index. So if you don’t mind living in the mid-Southern region of the country, there is a lot here for you.
Similar to Pittsburgh, Cincinnati is also a town filled with young people in their mid-20’s. That’s probably because the city has a low unemployment rate and the median rent on a 2BR apartment is only about $2,200. Cinci has lots to offer culturally and the dining is pretty great as well. The sales tax is around 6% which isn’t too bad but it’s also projected to reach 39% jobs growth, higher than the national average.