Atlanta, GA

Atlanta, Georgia Tops List of Best Places To Start a Career – New York City Was Bottom of the List

Toby Hazlewood

Survey considered available jobs and overall quality of life
Woman at workPhoto byShutterstock

On May 15, the personal finance website WalletHub published the findings of its annual survey which identifies the best and worst places to start a career, and Atlanta, GA topped the list. In 2022 Atlanta was at position #3.

The city at the foot of the list, which considered 182 separate locations was New York City, NY, scoring poorly on both the availability of jobs and also the overall quality of life - two of the key indicators that make a city suitable for those at the outset of their career.

The findings may not come as a surprise in either regard. Factors that the survey considered include numerous factors that make a given location favorable or hostile for those who are entering the world of work, including:

  • Average starting salary
  • Number of entry-level jobs per 100,000 population
  • Job growth
  • Affordability of housing
  • Percentage of the population aged between 25 and 54

Each city's combined score and ranking in relation to these metrics was amalgamated to arrive at a single place on the scale - and Atlanta came out at the top of the list. Factors like poor starting salaries relative to the cost of living in the city, and the cost of housing in New York City were undoubtedly factors in its poor position at the foot of the chart.

Georgia continues to score highly as a great place to live

The WalletHub survey echoes the findings of a 2022 survey by Money magazine, that also determined that Atlanta was the best place to live in the entire United States. In 2020, Evans, GA had topped Money Magazine's list too.

Atlanta has a lower rate of unemployment than the U.S. average, and its job-growth figures have consistently outpaced the wider United States for more than the last 12 months, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Just as important in securing its 'top of the list' status is it's so-called 'eye on equality'; Atlanta is the fourth biggest black-majority city in the United States behind Detroit, Memphis and Baltimore.
Neon signPhoto byUnsplashonUnsplash

Another survey published by WalletHub on January 18 of this year suggested that Atlanta, GA is also 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 came in at position #4 in the list.

Atlanta's other questionable #1

Atlanta has also topped other lists this year too, and not all of them for positive reasons.

A February report confirmed that Atlanta, GA was once again the U.S. airport that topped the list for guns being found in passengers' hand baggage at TSA checkpoints - 448 guns were taken from bags in 2022.

While this number is still lower than the total seized at Atlanta airport in 2021, it's still shockingly high and suggests that more than 1 passenger every day on average is either trying to carry a gun through airport security undetected, or has left it in their bag by mistake. Even in 2020, with vastly restricted numbers of people flying, 220 guns were seized at Atlanta airport during the year.

It will be interesting to see whether the report results in a large number of Americans deserting cities like New York, to start their career in Atlanta.

Do you think that Atlanta is a city that favors those who are early in their career to find work? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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