5 Cities Where Nursing Graduates are in High Demand

nursing locationsA career in the health care industry is one that is just about always in demand. There will always be employment for nurses and other health care workers, especially due to the aging baby boomer population. However, as there have been issues with the economy, it can be difficult for new graduates in any field to find a job. Relocating to a different city might bring with it the opportunity to not only find a job but perhaps one that is higher paying than would be in your current city.

For the best quality of life, the key is not just to find any city with the highest salary. There are many things to take into account, such as the cost of living and amenities. There are 15 cities that are consistently considered the best places where nurses are in high demand. The reason that these cities make the list is that there is a demand for nurses, good salaries and a decent cost of living that allows for a high quality of life with the average salaries.

#1. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Employment

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has an unemployment rate that is lower than most other large cities and that has remained consistent. It has always been a center for health care companies, such as pharmaceutical companies. There has been a boom recently as the economy in the city is now centered around the health care industry. With that comes the increased need for nurses.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has a fairly low cost of living. It hovers around average in comparison to the rest of the country. Home prices are modest and the median cost for homes is right around $105,000. That makes it an easy place to find an affordable rental or purchase a home.

Lifestyle

Philadelphia is a city filled with historic attractions. In addition, the exciting array of restaurants, diverse population and plethora or green spaces makes Philadelphia a city for nursing graduates to consider.

#2. Portland, OR

Employment

Portland, Oregon has seen a very consistent growth in various industries, especially the health care sector. Healthcare in general is a priority in this state and there is a focus on wellness. In addition, there has been recent job growth in all sectors which is good for the overall economy.

Cost of Living

With a population of approximately 550,000, this is a medium-sized city with a moderate cost of living. The average salary for nurses in Portland is $43,000* and average home prices are $222,000. Rents are fairly affordable, especially out in the suburbs.

Lifestyle

Portland, Oregon offers a temperate year-round climate with plenty of rain. This is a city of artists, musicians, and creative types in general. They are well known for a city filled with independent bookstores, food trucks and a variety of culinary delights, more parks than most other cities in the country and an overall liberal atmosphere. In addition, Portland has an expansive transportation system that is among the best in the United States, as well as having more bike paths and trails than almost any other city of its size.

#3. Austin, Texas

Employment

Austin, Texas certainly has plenty of demand for nurses. In general, the larger cities in Texas have experienced decent job growth in most industries, particularly health care. Austin in particular has experienced a steady economy, even with the lagging economy.

Cost of Living

The salary and cost of living makes Austin an excellent and cost-effective option for new nurses. The cost of living is three percent higher than the average across the United States. The median cost of homes is approximately $187,000. The average salary for nurses in Austin, Texas is $41,000*.

Lifestyle

There is a reason that Austin often shows up on the best city lists. This is a liberal bastion in the heart of Texas. While summers can be extremely hot, much of the year is fairly mild weather-wise. Austin is filled with music. It is filled with live shows, delicious Mexican restaurants, and all kinds of bar. There aren’t many other cities that offer this much vibrancy and culture while also being affordable with many job opportunities.

#4. Cincinnati, Ohio

Employment

Cincinnati, Ohio has seen extensive job growth in the past number of years. This is due to a growth of Fortune 100 companies and health care facilities in the area. It is projected that there will be continued job growth, especially for nurses.

Cost of Living

The cost of living and low home prices in Cincinnati make it perfect for new nursing graduates just starting their career. Cincinnati, Ohio has a population of approximately 332,000 people. With an average salary of $40,500* and home prices with a median cost of $86,000, it is much easier to get ahead in Cincinnati in comparison to other cities.

Lifestyle

Rated number 9 by Forbes as being the best city for raising a family in 2012, it is ideal for just starting out with little disposable cash, as well as for settling down and raising a family. There are a variety of cultural events and festivals, including the largest Oktoberfest in the entire country.

#5. Seattle, WA

Employment

Seattle, Washington is always on the list for the healthiest cities in the United States. This is clearly a boon for new nursing graduates. Due to the focus on healthcare and overall wellness, the employment for nurses remains steady. The economy has been more stable than other parts of the country and there has been job growth in industries such as technology and health care.

Cost of Living

It’s true that the cost of living is on the higher side in comparison to some of the other cities. The median home price in Seattle, Washington is approximately $350,000 and the salary is close to $50,000*. Utilities tend to be cheaper as there is no need for air conditioning during the summer months.

Lifestyle

The Emerald city is filled with art, culture, education, mountains, islands, museums and much more. The transportation system includes a comprehensive bus system and trains. They boast a large number of trails, outdoor spaces, and it’s typically known as an area that is ideal for those that love the outdoors. The weather is moderate and rainy throughout much of the year.

* Salary data used in this article was sourced from Bls.gov (US Bureau of Labor Statistics)