By Prashant Gopal
Recent college graduates are at a distinct disadvantage in this shaky job market because employers these days have their pick of candidates and tend to favor those with experience. But the advantage many young professionals have is that they're often single and have the flexibility to move across the country or even switch careers if it helps them secure a great job or a competitive salary. BusinessWeek teamed up with Seattle's PayScale.com to come up with the best states for Generation Y employees in 30 industries, including hospitals, legal and accounting services, performing arts, and publishing. The best states for each of the industries had relatively high salaries for twentysomethings and a high share of employees in that age group (The idea is that young people want to be in workplaces that also employ other people their age). To see the best state for your profession, read on.
Editor's Note: The salary data were collected during the past 12 months from users of Payscale.com and included information only for full-time employees 30 or below who had a bachelor's degree. The best states for each industry were chosen by weighting the relative ranks for both median salary and share of employees 30 or younger. The median salaries are for 2008 and included bonuses, commissions, and overtime. The industry categories came from North American Industry Classification System (NAICS), but the names were altered in some cases for clarity. For example, "Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services" was changed to "Legal Services, Accounting, and Scientific Research" and "Accommodation" became "Hotel Industry."