Atlanta ranks number one for recent graduates

Atlanta is the number one city for recent college graduates, according to an article posted by Market Watch on May 21.

The websites ForRentUniversity and Homes combined several metrics such as the mean entry-level income, average price of one-bedroom apartments and the proximity to postgraduate institutions. This also included the average unemployment rate for millennials (graduates between the age of 25 and 34), according to Market Watch.

The Wall Street Journal-affiliated site listed the mean entry-level income in Atlanta as $43,000. However, Kevin Gaw, Georgia State senior director of University Career services says there are issues with using average income metrics.

“Often times, when people report data, it tells a story,” Gaw said. “It is very possible that they’re going to go in with some high-end information that tells a good story. But also frequently there’s more to it,” he said.

Gaw said the problem with using an average income level is that jobs with really high entry-level incomes skew the results.

“An average is fine, but what’s the range?” Gaw said.

Market Watch also projected the average one-bedroom apartment in Atlanta costs $800 and the Millennial unemployment rate is 6.9 percent. The average salary of recent grads in the city is 21 percent more than the national average.

Home Depot and Suntrust Banks, two Atlanta-based Fortune 500 companies, were mentioned in Market Watch’s findings.

Catherine H. Woodling, Home Depot’s Manager of corporate communications, said in addition to stores seeking talented individuals, Home Depot can help develop future leaders.

“…We can develop as future leaders – Assistant Store Managers, Store Managers, District Managers – our Store Support Center is also looking for the brightest minds, especially in the areas of IT and supply chain,” she said.

Sue Mallino, chief communications officer for Suntrust said Atlanta offers talent in many industries.

“Atlanta is a diverse and a culturally-vibrant city that offers high quality of life,” Mallino said. “Atlanta is an attractive city in which to headquarter a business, as the region offers a large supply of talent in just about any industry. Further, Atlanta’s cost of living is below those of most major metropolitan areas.”

Dallas, Houston and St. Louis were also mentioned as the top cities for recent graduates. Minneapolis / St. Paul was also in the list.