Which Job Is Most Unique to Your State?

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Today's map is a special one. We teamed up with Economic Modeling Specialists Intl., a CareerBuilder company, to determine the "most unique" job in each state using a measurement called location quotient (LQ).

Measuring the “Most Unique” Jobs

Location quotient measures job concentration. For this analysis, LQ compares the percentage share of a state’s workforce in a given occupation to the percentage share of the nationwide workforce in that occupation. A location quotient of 1.0 means that percent employment for the state matches the nation. Jobs in retail, health care, and local government are typically the most common jobs in each state or metropolitan area, because every local economy needs a significant amount of these workers. These occupations tend to have an LQ near 1.0 in most places.

On the other hand, a high LQ is very useful for identifying key regional occupations or industries. High location quotients indicate that the occupation or industry makes up an important part of the region's economic base, often generating exports and wealth for the local economy. For example, one can effectively say that petroleum engineers are 6 times as concentrated in Texas as they are anywhere else in the United States on average.

As the data in the map and listed below indicates, an occupation need not have a large amount of jobs to earn a high LQ. For instance, there were 3.1 million jobs in Indiana as of 2013, but only 2,686 are boilermakers – making up just .09 percent of the statewide workforce. However, about one out of every 7 boilermaker jobs in the country are located in Indiana.

The following table represents the information found in the map:

State

Occupation

LQ

Jobs 2013

Med. Hourly Earnings

Alabama

Tire Builders

7.75

1,900

$24.55

 

Alaska

Fishers & Related Fishing Workers

33.56

2,901

$16.85

 

Arizona

Semiconductor Processors

4.19

1,640

$15.32

 

Arkansas

Food Processing Workers

6.78

2,303

$10.59

 

California

Actors

3.19

33,328

$29.23

 

Colorado

Atmospheric & Space Scientists

7.76

1,510

$49.34

 

Connecticut

Actuaries

4.16

1,141

$51.22

 

D.C.

Political Scientists

86.61

3,197

$55.64

 

Delaware

Chemists

11.65

3,050

$41.45

 

Florida

Motorboat Operators

5.92

1,315

$14.17

 

Georgia

Textile Winding,
Twisting, & Drawing Out Machine Setters, Operators, & Tenders

10.52

8,607

$13.03

 

Hawaii

Tour Guides & Escorts

8.55

1,687

$12.82

 

Idaho

Forest & Conservation
Technicians

14.2

2,273

$15.06

 

Illinois

Correspondence Clerks

3.93

1,727

$19.88

 

Indiana

Boilermakers

7.03

2,686

$31.66

 

Iowa

Soil & Plant Scientists

8.94

1,574

$30.05

 

Kansas

Umpires, Referees, Other
Sports Officials

5.42

1,216

$11.16

 

Kentucky

Roof Bolters, Mining

14.14

1,184

$25.65

 

Louisiana

Captains, Mates, &
Pilots of Water Vessels

17.2

8,857

$34.88

 

Maine

Fishers & Related Fishing Workers

27.31

4,070

$17.52

 

Maryland

Subway & Streetcar
Operators

10.41

1,884

$25.43

 

Massachusetts

Psychiatric Technicians

4.86

8,202

$17.52

 

Michigan

Model Makers, Metal &
Plastic

6.23

1,095

$24.72

 

Minnesota

Slaughterers & Meat Packers

4.82

7,619

$12.80

 

Mississippi

Coil Winders, Tapers,
& Finishers

11.18

1,340

$18.87

 

Missouri

Food and Tobacco Roasting, Baking, & Drying Machine
Operators & Tenders

5.58

2,303

$12.37

 

Montana

Forest & Conservation
Technicians

19.41

2,200

$15.05

 

Nebraska

Meat, Poultry, & Fish Cutters & Trimmers

9.92

11,453

$13.58

 

Nevada

Gaming Supervisors

30.91

7,414

$25.40

 

New Hampshire

Metal Workers & Plastic Workers, All Other

10.05

1,020

$14.40

 

New Jersey

Biochemists &
Biophysicists

4.71

3,628

$50.38

 

New Mexico

Wellhead Pumpers

13.75

1,358

$22.50

 

New York

Fashion Designers

5.18

7,164

$32.27

 

North Carolina

Textile Winding, Twisting, & Drawing Out Machine Setters,
Operators, & Tenders

7.63

6,394

$11.12

 

North Dakota

Derrick Operators, Oil
& Gas

28.21

2,137

$26.65

 

Ohio

Rolling Machine Setters, Operators, & Tenders, Metal &
Plastic

3.53

4,778

$17.21

 

Oklahoma

Wellhead Pumpers

8.66

1,671

$20.51

 

Oregon

Logging Workers, all other

21.24

1,400

$16.57

 

Pennsylvania

Survey Researchers

3.54

2,776

$13.09

 

Rhode Island

Education, Training, & Library Workers

3.04

1,062

$20.42

 

South Carolina

Textile Knitting and
Weaving Machine Setters, Operators, & Tenders

10.99

3,220

$13.70

 

South Dakota

Farmers, Ranchers, and Other Agricultural Managers

9.42

14,827

$12.78

 

Tennessee

Conveyor Operators &
Tenders

4.25

3,486

$13.73

 

Texas

Petroleum Engineers

6.39

21,457

$66.80

 

Utah

Forest & Conservation
Technicians

4.4

1,362

$13.46

 

Vermont

Highway Maintenance Workers

3.99

1,364

$16.88

 

Virginia

Legal Support Workers,
All Other

5.75

9,039

$43.50

 

Washington

Aircraft Structure, Surfaces, Rigging, & Systems Assemblers

14.21

13,535

$23.09

 

West Virginia

Roof Bolters, Mining

66.29

2,129

$26.84

 

Wisconsin

Foundry Mold & Coremakers

5.47

1,351

$15.72

 

Wyoming

Rotary Drill Operators,
Oil & Gas

28.0

1,566

$27.05

 

The Afternoon Map is a semi-regular feature in which we post maps and infographics. Thanks to the good people at CareerBuilder and Economic Modeling Specialists Intl. for all the data that went into this one, and to Mike Rogalski for making it look pretty.

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