Unusually Popular College Degree in PA

College Degree

According to the U.S. Census Bureau there are over 170 different fields of study that students in undergraduate programs can earn a college degree. Interestingly, more than half of the 75 million American adults get a bachelor’s degree in one of only fifteen fields.

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Popular college degrees

Majors such as business, nursing, teaching, accounting, and biology are each among the most popular with undergraduates — and with good reason. Degrees in these fields prepare students for careers in essential industries like health care, education, and retail, where job opportunities are available in cities and towns across the country. Here is a look at the college majors with the lowest unemployment.

Of course, just as these industries are practically ubiquitous, many others are specific to certain parts of the country. This is often a reflection of a key industry that might be far less common in other parts of the country. In many cases, this is attributable to the presence of natural resources, like oil or mineral deposits, or geographic features, like a coastline. As a result, workers with degrees in less popular or more specialized subjects are often concentrated only in certain areas.

The unusually popular degree

According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the most concentrated degree in Pennsylvania relative to the U.S. as a whole is architectural engineering. Adults in the state are about three times more likely to have a degree in the field than the typical American adult. An estimated 0.10% of adults in the state have an architectural engineering degree compared to 0.04% of adults nationwide.

Just as demand for workers with this specific degree appears to be higher than average in the state, compensation is also higher than average. Adults with an architectural engineering degree in Pennsylvania earn an average of $95,598 per year compared to the average income among all Americans with the degree of $88,629. It is important to note that average annual earnings include all adults with the degree, even those who are working part-time or not working.

Study data

All data in this story is from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2019 American Community Survey Public Use Microdata Sample. College majors are ranked within each state according to their location quotient — the percentage of adults 25 and older within a state with a certain bachelor’s degree relative to the percentage of adults with the same degree nationwide. The college major or field of study with the highest location quotient is considered the most unique college degree in every state.

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