NYC Attracts the Highest Volume of College Grads Among U.S. Gateway Cities

Major gateway cities continue to be the top choice among college graduates of U.S. Universities “who got a job in office-using industries. Findings of a recently released study revealed that “more than 692,000, or one-third of the 1.98 million 2023 graduates” settled in markets that serve as gateways to business regions. In comparison, seven large markets in the Sun Belt markets attracted a combined total of almost 280,000, or about 14%, of the graduates. New York led the way among the leading regional gateway markets, attracting 200,394, or more than 10% of total graduates, followed at a distance by Los Angeles, which attracted 97,458 graduates. Among the Sun Belt markets, Atlanta led the way, attracting 51,096 graduates, followed closely behind by the Dallas-Fort Worth area’s total of 50,092 graduates. Due to key advantages as talent hubs, with “university population and especially elite universities” highly concentrated, the gateway markets continue to top the list as the preferred place among college graduates. Although the Sun Belt markets have outpaced growth for much of the last 10-years “driven by strong domestic migration and corporate migration chasing lower costs and higher quality of life, cities such as Atlanta, Dallas, and Houston remain far behind New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Boston. The report’s findings further substantiate the importance of the permanence of higher education institutions as not only key in developing what becomes the next generation of office users, but also because they “act as a magnet in driving economic activity across there proximate metro areas.”