NYC, SF Top List of Best Places for Young Pros

By Deb Perelman  |  Posted 2007-07-18 Print this article Print

Certain you'll never make it in the Big Apple? Think again. In a recent issue, Forbes Magazine ranks New York as the No. 1 city for young professionals.

Though this is far from surprising--many of America's best companies, from Goldman Sachs to News Corp., make the island of Manhattan their home--great companies alone don't make a city rise to the top of the list. Indeed, it was the lifestyle factor that clinched the top spot for New York City, including bars, clubs and top restaurants, an instant magnet for young professionals.

So is cold, hard cash. Recent college grads in New York were found to command pay 22 percent higher than the national average, something that comes in handy when forking over $8 for a happy hour brew.

Forbes compiled its list by tracking where the graduates of top universities across the country ended up 10 years after they threw their caps in the air. Factors that were weighed included where the best business opportunities existed, which cities had the most young and unmarried people, and which paid young pros the best. Alumni that stayed close to their schools were nixed, so Harvard grads who worked in Boston weren't what landed that city in seventh place.

San Francisco, at No. 2, was actually ranked first for salaries of young professionals, but was weighed down by having fewer well-known companies than New York. Atlanta, with a high salary to cost-of-living ratio, was in third place. Los Angeles, Washington and Boston filled out slots four through seven with their big companies, pay 10 percent above the national average and large population of unmarried young people.

Tampa's last place ranking among hot spots for young professionals is of particular interest, as Florida cropped up as a mover and shaker for technology professionals in the most recent Cyberstates report by the AEA. Tampa lost points because its average age is much older the most cities, most professionals were married and most home owners didn't consider Florida their primary residence, but made a big splash for techies by adding the most technology jobs after California in 2006.

So perhaps Florida still is a great place to be an IT professional... once you've done a stint in New York or San Francisco! |

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