What Are the Best Cities for STEM Jobs?

By Phill Powell

Washington, D.C. scored high on the list. Employers in the nation’s capital are trying to fill nearly 40,000 STEM-based jobs.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) learning is the future of education and STEM is also the future of the best and best paying jobs—jobs like game designers, programmers, app developers, animators and robotics engineers.

Where are those STEM jobs located? A recent study by Forbes magazine and Indeed.com found out. With data provided by the U.S. Department of Labor (which evaluated the 50 most-populated urban areas in the country), they identified the top ten cities that presently have the largest number of STEM-based jobs:

10. Dallas: Called (along with neighboring Fort Worth) “Silicon Prairie,” it’s the home to Dell, Verizon, HP Enterprise Services and Texas Instruments. (STEM jobs: 18,745)

9. Atlanta: The most wired city in the United States is an unstoppable engine for technological research—thanks in part to Georgia Tech. (STEM jobs: 18,824)

8. Houston: Houston has become a leading technology center. It was ranked by Forbes in 2006 as the third “best places for business and careers.” By 2030 Houston will be the nation’s fifth-largest city. (STEM jobs: 21,780)

Three of the top STEM jobs areas are found in the state of California. The number one? Silicon Valley’s heart: San Jose.

7. Los Angeles: STEM jobs in the entertainment industry helped the city collect a Gross Metropolitan Product of $604 billion in 2011. (STEM jobs: 21,796)

6. Chicago: A magnet for web start-up companies like CareerBuilder, Orbitz, Groupon and 37signals. (STEM jobs: 21,857)

5. Boston: One of the oldest cities in America (founded: 1630) and one of its brightest: Harvard University and MIT are here, as are biotech industries and other high-tech jobs. (STEM jobs: 25,268)

4. San Francisco: Tech giants here and in the Bay Area include Apple, Google, Wikimedia, Twitter, Zynga, Yelp and Craigslist. San Francisco is also a leading hub for biotech and biomedical research. (STEM jobs: 26,965)

3. San Jose: Adobe, eBay, IBM, Cisco System and Hitachi are here. San Jose is also located among many leading universities, such as Stanford University and the University of California, Berkeley. (Current STEM job listings: 30,731)

2. Washington, D.C.: Scientific research thrives at its universities and colleges. And the city’s even home to cutting-edge STEM-based technology camps. (STEM jobs: 39,368)

1. New York City: Home to the entertainment, tech and digital publishing industries (and too many others to list here), the Big Apple relies on STEM-educated people to fill the many jobs. (STEM jobs: 47,754)

New York City is the nation’s largest center for jobs based on STEM.

Now Get to Work!
The Forbes/Indeed.com survey proves that STEM-based jobs are appearing in huge numbers all across the U.S. But beyond that, STEM-related employment is also the wave of the future, as technology-based work becomes increasingly important to the nation’s overall economy.

For teens and others interested in pursuing a creative and profitable career, STEM-based occupations should be at the top of your list.

And there’s no time like the present to start laying the groundwork for future success, such as spending a week this summer at STEM-teaching tech camp locations in U.S. and Canada.