Atlanta, GA

Atlanta Ranks #4 in U.S. for Jobs in Science and Technology – Ahead of San Francisco and Silicon Valley

Toby Hazlewood

Opportunities in GA for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Professionals
Woman with LaptopPhoto byShutterstock

When you think of the giant corporations of technology - Facebook, Microsoft and Google for example - you'd assume that the biggest opportunities for those looking to work in the sector would be in California.

However, a survey published by the personal finance website WalletHub on January 18 suggests that Atlanta, GA is actually ahead of cities like San Francisco and San Jose in California when it comes to jobs and opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math (collectively known as STEM).

It comes as welcome news, and something of a boost for Georgia, after another 2023 survey from WalletHub found that Georgia was one of the 10 least family-friendly states in all of the USA.

Silicon Valley is no longer the favorite

Seattle, WA - home of Microsoft and Amazon - still topped the list, but Georgia scored highly on the various measures to secure a position at #4 in the ranking. Only Austin, TX and Boston, MA topped Atlanta (aside from Seattle). It seems that the winds of change are blowing, particularly where high-paying jobs in technology are concerned.

The money that can be made in STEM related professions is significant, and this too could be a positive for Georgia in bringing economic prosperity to the Peach State. According to WalletHub's report:

"... the median annual STEM wage is $95,420, compared to $40,120 for all non-STEM occupations."

Georgia attracting investment

While many think of the giants of social media and technology corporations as synonymous with STEM, there are many other reasons why STEM professionals may find themselves drawn to Georgia in the coming years.

Elon Musk is one of the more infamous tech-leaders who has abandoned California, in favor of Austin, TX. Tesla's Gigafactory in Austin represents the company's U.S. headquarters and it recently announced a further investment of $760 million to expand the factory.

That sum of money seems trivial though, when compared to a recently announced investment in the building of electric cars by Hyundai. Executives from the car manufacturer joined Governor Brian Kemp in Georgia at the end of 2022, for the ceremonial announcement of a $5 billion investment in Georgia, where it will establish its U.S. headquarters. The new plant will create 8,100 new jobs and is planned to open in 2025.

At the announcement, Governor Kemp was keen to portray the investment by Hyundai as an indicator of the blossoming state of the Georgia economy, something that Kemp himself was keen to take credit for.

It is perhaps the investments like these that have seen Georgia climbing up the ranks in surveys like the one from WalletHub, that show the Peach State as being ever-more significant as a base for STEM industries in the U.S.

Not everyone agrees with the march of progress

There are detractors of course. Outspoken Georgia Republican Marjorie Taylor-Greene recently expressed another of her ill-timed rants on social media, claiming that electric vehicles were an evil being pushed by the Biden Administration upon American citizens. In the same rant she also dismissed climate change!

Regardless of the comments of some ill-informed politicians, it would appear that the future looks bright for Georgia's STEM professionals!

Do you work in a so-called STEM profession? Are you surprised that Atlanta scored so highly in the survey? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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