Sunday, January 13, 2013
Getting an education is an important part in finding the right career. Many people go above and beyond their bachelor's degrees to become highly specialized in a field of their choice. The national average for holding a higher degree is about 25 percent of the total population. When it comes to towns and cities where these well-educated people reside, some of the results may be surprising since locally, the number is much higher. Here are five American cities that currently have the highest concentration of those who hold graduate degrees.
Washington, D.C. Metro Area
The area in the United States with the densest population of those with graduate degrees or Ph.D.s is in and around the nation's capital. The number of those who hold these degrees is nearly double of the national average at about 47 percent. The density of degrees is mostly due to the necessity of having the biggest and brightest minds working in government jobs. It is also due to a higher interest in public policy by young graduates.
San Francisco, California
On the other side of the country, the next highest concentration of graduate degree holders is in San Francisco. The concentration of degree holders is around 43 percent. San Francisco has many great universities, a scenic landscape and a culture of openness that all contribute to this statistic. Many artists, writers and poets have found their way to the city, making creative arts a prominent player in the educational aspirations of many citizens.
San Jose, California
Less than an hour south of San Francisco, San Jose is another area highly populated with graduate degrees or better. San Jose has a graduate degree population of about 43 percent. This is due mainly to its location as the hub Silicon Valley where tech companies are recruiting the best and brightest in information technology, engineering and entrepreneurship. While its known that many of the biggest companies were founded by those who never finished their education, they are smart enough to know that they need to hire the best to move their companies forward.
When it comes to education in the United States, Boston is the city that's had the longest history. Many of the top universities in the country are located in or around the Boston area, including Wellesly, Harvard and more.
Raleigh, North Carolina
Raleigh is a point on North Carolina's Research Triangle that also includes Durham and Chapel Hill. This is an area of high concentration when it comes to graduate degrees. This is because these areas were once home to many businesses and high tech companies that placed themselves near high quality universities throughout the mid-twentieth century. Some businesses remain, though many are now located in Silicon Valley.
Big cities are not the only areas of the United States boasting about being well educated either. There are a number of smaller cities and towns throughout the country that have a higher than average concentration of graduate degrees as well such as State College, Pennsylvania or Bethesda, Maryland. However, there is a correlation to the concentration of degrees and wealth. The most graduate degrees are typically found in areas with a high median income.
Phyllis Douglas is a career counselor and guest author at Best Masters Programs, where she contributed to the guide to the TopCareers for Master's Degrees.