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Good news for students coming to Harrisburg University of Science and Technology who wish to remain in the area after graduation.  Harrisburg ranks 12th in the nation in a new ranking of the best markets for STEM professionals by WalletHub, a personal finance company.

WalletHub’s analysts compared the 100 largest metro areas across 17 key metrics. The  data set ranges from “per-capita job openings for STEM graduates” to “annual median wage growth for STEM jobs” to “projected demand for STEM workers by 2020.”

The 17 metrics WalletHub used to come to its conclusions include a blend of metrics that analyze the kinds of professional opportunities each city offers in combination with how STEM-friendly the respective environments are. When considering professional opportunities, WalletHub experts analyzed things like how many job openings each city offered STEM graduates, each cities’ projected demand for STEM jobs by 2020, how many utility plants each city hosts and both the annual median wage for the city’s STEM workers as well as their annual median wage growth. When considering how STEM-friendly a city is, WalletHub took a look at the quality of universities and colleges in each city, how affordable housing is, how accessible workplaces are via transit, and how family-friendly each city is.

Harrisburg University is the only STEM-focused non-profit comprehensive university in the Harrisburg-Carlisle region.  It offers undergraduate, graduate and adult learner programs in STEM fields to 4,100 students.

The ranking notes that STEM workers are in fierce demand and not just in the global epicenter of high tech known as Silicon Valley. According to estimates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, STEM — science, technology, engineering and math — professions will expand 1.7 times faster than non-STEM occupations between 2010 and 2020.  Given their growing demand, STEM careers today comprise some of the most lucrative employment, paying higher salaries and boasting far fewer threats of unemployment compared with non-STEM jobs. In fact, the annual average wage for all STEM positions collectively was $85,570 — 81 percent more than the national average of $47,230 for all jobs — according to the most recent figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The rankings are online at

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