There is no doubt that these are tough times for college graduates and for the 2013 graduates only about 45% have job offers after they graduate. It turns out that certain cities can provide more opportunities for recent graduates than others.
NerdWallet has put together some numbers to be able to rank the top 10 cities according to the following questions:
1 Will you have peers and others your age? New graduates usually want to live in cities where there are plenty of others the same age to meet. (The survey included percentages of the population between the ages of 18 and 24 in the analysis)
2 Will you have an active social life? (social life was proxied by the amount of bars per 1000 residents)
3 Is the city walkable? It turns out that most grads don’t have a car or the money to buy a car, so the city’s “Walk Score” was included in the analysis. The “Walk Score” is the measurement of how easy it is to get around a city without having a car.
4 Can you afford to live there? We included the median cost of renting as most grads have no salaries and usually no savings.
5 Can you get a job? To assess the availability of jobs and the local economy, we calculated each city’s unemployment rate.
TOP 10 CITIES FOR RECENT GRADUATES:
#1 Boston, Massachusetts has the most 18-24 year olds of any city and the 4th most bars per capita, and the 3rd highest Walk Score making it a high score getter for twenty somethings to be able to pursue a very active social life. Boston is the 4th most expensive for housing, but has the 2nd lowest rate in unemployment which gives the grads a good shot at landing a job. The top industries in Boston are research, healthcare and finance.
#2 Seattle, Washington has the second most bars per capita and is home to a very large population of 18-24 year olds. The city has a laid back culture and a highly walkable layout making it a great place for new grads to start out. The cost of living is fairly high, but the unemployment rates are on the low side.
There are many high tech industries here including Microsoft.
#3 Denver, Colorado has an affordable social life and can boast of having the most bars per capita and a low cost of living. There is a moderate unemployment rate making it somewhat easier to find jobs. Top industries in Denver include broadcasting and telecommunications, energy, healthcare and aerospace.
#4 Baltimore, Maryland has a high population of young people, moderate cost of living and a fairly walkable layout making it a good choice for recent grads. This is the center of medicine and life sciences.
#5 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has the 5th most 18-24 year olds and a high walkability layout, making it a good choice for new grads. The city has a booming healthcare industry and many opportunities for new grads. The cost of living is rated as moderate and the unemployment rate is average.
#6 Washington, D.C. attracts many students for jobs with politicians and thinktanks. It is the 2nd most populous in 18-24 year olds. It is highly walkable and has a moderate unemployment rate. The rents here are fairly high.
#7 Columbus, Ohio has a low cost of living, the 4th lowest unemployment rate and 4th in populous of 18-24 year olds. The city is not known to have a walkable layout.
#8 Austin, Texas seems to have it all. The 3rd most 18-24 year olds, a low cost of living and low unemployment rate. The city has a growing high tech industry and biotechnology industry. Dell Computers and IBM are both headquartered here.
#9 Chicago, Illinois is the 4th most walkable city, but the blustery weather precludes walking anywhere in the wintertime. It has an extensive public transportation system, a large population of young people and a fairly moderate cost of living. The industries here include finance and publishing.
#10 San Francisco, California has a great social scene and great walkable layout making it popular for new grads. Tech and computer savy grads will find plenty of tech companies to work at with giants like Facebook, Google and Twitter near by. The city has a fairly high cost of living however.