The 25 most fun cities for new college grads where jobs are abundant and housing is affordable

Brown University/FacebookNew York, Los Angeles, and Miami didn’t make the top 25.
  • A recent report from SmartAsset reveals the 25 best American cities for recent college graduates to live.
  • These cities are affordable, have good job opportunities, and are fun for new college grads.
  • Three Ohio cities made the list, including Columbus and Cincinnati in the top two spots.

Graduation is coming up and many college students may find themselves asking, Where do I go from here?

SmartAsset recently released a list of the best cities for new college grads – places with ample jobs for college-educated people, affordable housing, and a fun atmosphere.

To determine the ranking, SmartAsset looked at 10 metrics including the number of Indeed job listings, cost of living in the city, and concentration of entertainment and dining establishments.

Ohio may be the best state for recent college grads; three Ohio cities make the top 25, including the top two spots. The Midwest is responsible for six of the 10 best cities for college grads. Meanwhile, coastal cities like New York, Los Angeles, and Miami didn’t make the top 25.

Take a look at the 25 best cities for new college graduates, along with each city’s unemployment rate for people with bachelor’s degrees, median rent, and the percentage of the city’s population that is in their 20s.


25. Atlanta, Georgia

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.6%

Median rent: $US904

Population aged 20-29: 20.1%


24. Seattle, Washington

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.8%

Median rent: $US1,360

Population aged 20-29: 21.3%


23. Boston, Massachusetts

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:3.3%

Median rent: $US1,369

Population aged 20-29: 24.1%


22. Richmond, Virginia

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.7%

Median rent: $US783

Population aged 20-29: 20.8%


21. Rochester, New York

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.4%

Median rent: $US673

Population aged 20-29: 20.9%


20. Arlington, Virginia

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.5%

Median rent: $US1,801

Population aged 20-29: 19.9%


19. San Francisco, California

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:3.3%

Median rent: $US1,731

Population aged 20-29: 17.6%


18. Madison, Wisconsin

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:1.5%

Median rent: $US926

Population aged 20-29: 26.4%


17. Lexington, Kentucky

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:4.4%

Median rent: $US689

Population aged 20-29: 18.5%


16. Buffalo, New York

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.4%

Median rent: $US600

Population aged 20-29: 19.2%


15. Orlando, Florida

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:1.7%

Median rent: $US940

Population aged 20-29: 20.2%


14. Cleveland, Ohio

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:3.0%

Median rent: $US550

Population aged 20-29: 16.8%


13. Des Moines, Iowa

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:1.1%

Median rent: $US690

Population aged 20-29: 16.3%


12. Lincoln, Nebraska

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:1.8%

Median rent: $US669

Population aged 20-29: 19.3%


11. Austin, Texas

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.7%

Median rent: $US1,042

Population aged 20-29: 19.7%


10. Indianapolis, Indiana

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:3.5%

Median rent: $US680

Population aged 20-29: 16.4%


9. St. Louis, Missouri

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.2%

Median rent: $US617

Population aged 20-29: 17.9%


8. Louisville, Kentucky

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.4%

Median rent: $US638

Population aged 20-29: 14.5%


7. Omaha, Nebraska

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:1.4%

Median rent: $US712

Population aged 20-29: 15.4%


6. San Antonio, Texas

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:3.4%

Median rent: $US774

Population aged 20-29: 16.4%


5. Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:3.3%

Median rent: $US684

Population aged 20-29: 18.2%


4. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.4%

Median rent: $US750

Population aged 20-29: 23.5%


3. Nashville, Tennessee

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:2.3%

Median rent: $US841

Population aged 20-29: 18.1%


2. Cincinnati, Ohio

Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:3.0%

Median rent: $US568

Population aged 20-29: 19.6%


1. Columbus, Ohio

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Unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders:1.5%

Median rent: $US724

Population aged 20-29: 19.7%

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