The top 15 American cities for young college grads

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Washington, DC.
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Shutterstock.com

As the year winds down for college seniors around the US, the next important decision many will make is where they should move after graduation.

A ranking of the best major metropolitan areas from the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER) may help students having trouble making the call.

AIER calculated its list using nine economic, demographic, and quality-of-life factors. AIER defines major metropolitan cities as having over 2.5 million residents.

The report states that the most important factor in determining where recent graduates should relocate is the prevalence of other young recent grads.

“The young and well-educated are moving to places where they’ll find a big contingent of the population that share these characteristics,” Amanda Knarr, program coordinator at AIER, said in a press release. “Civic leaders seeking to attract college-educated millennials and the businesses that employ them will want to emphasize their demographic profile.”

Aside from the overall ranking, we included cities’ individual scores for rent, earnings, and bars and restaurants as well.

Scroll through to find out the 15 best American cities for young college grads.


15. Los Angeles, California

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Shutterstock

#10 Rent

#10 Earnings

#4 Bars and Restaurants


14. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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Flicker/Michael Righi

#6 Rent

#14 Earnings

#13 Bars and Restaurants


13. Houston, Texas

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Shutterstock

#4 Rent

#4 Earnings

#10 Bars and Restaurants


12. Atlanta, Georgia

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Flickr/Terence S. Jones

#2 Rent

#15 Earnings

#2 Bars and Restaurants


11. San Diego, California

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Shutterstock.com

#11 Rent

#13 Earnings

#9 Bars and Restaurants


10. Dallas, Texas

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Shutterstock

#2 Rent

#8 Earnings

#3 Bars and Restaurants


9. Baltimore, Maryland

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Shutterstock

#7 Rent

#8 Earnings

#12 Bars and Restaurants


8. Chicago, Illinois

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Shutterstock.com

#7 Rent

#9 Earnings

#8 Bars and Restaurants


7. Seattle, Washington

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Shutterstock

#9 Rent

#5 Earnings

#11 Bars and Restaurants


6. New York, New York

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Shutterstock/turtix

#13 Rent

#2 Earnings

#15 Bars and Restaurants


5. Minneapolis, Minnesota

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Flickr/Matthew Paulson

#1 Rent

#12 Earnings

#6 Bars and Restaurants


4. Denver, Colorado

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Shutterstock

#5 Rent

#11 Earnings

#1 Bars and Restaurants


3. Boston, Massachusetts

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Shutterstock

#12 Rent

#6 Earnings

#5 Bars and Restaurants


2. San Francisco, California

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Shutterstock

#15 Rent

#1 Earnings

#7 Bars and Restaurants


1. Washington, District of Columbia

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Shutterstock.com

#14 Rent

#3 Earnings

#14 Bars and Restaurants