Killeen is a city that forms part of the Killeen-Temple-Fort-Hood metropolitan area. The city got its start in the late 1880s as a small farm and ranch community. However, at the start of World War II, the military chose the city for the site of Fort Hood, a facility created to meet the training demands of the war. As a result, the city experienced a huge military and construction boom, growing to its current size of approximately 128,000 people; the surrounding metro area has a population of 428,000.
Killeen is home to Central Texas College, which offers 40 certificate and degree programs. In 1999, Texas A&M University – Central Texas opened in Killeen, bringing residents the opportunity to earn bachelor's and master's degrees locally.
People relocating for jobs in Killeen, TX are presently surprised at the city's low cost of living. According to Forbes, Killeen is 3.7 percent below the national average. Housing costs are also quite low; the median home price is just $106,800, compared to a national median of $181,400. Median household income is $46,374.
Killeen Job Opportunities
The majority of jobs in Killeen are provided by the Fort Hood military base; over 58,000 people work at Fort Hood. Education is another major source of Killeen, TX jobs, with the public school system employing about 6,000 people. The city's universities provide another 1,400 jobs.
While defense and military are by far the largest sources of jobs, the economy is diversified, with banking and financial service jobs at First National Bank and Sallie Mae (Aegis Limited). There are also plenty of retail and service jobs. The Killeen Mall employs over 800 people. Search for jobs in Temple for employment opportunities in other sectors.
Killeen Employment Trends
The unemployment rate in the Killeen metro area was 6.0 percent in July 2014 – about the same as the national average, but slightly higher than the state rate of 5.1 percent. Job growth in 2013 was 1.5 percent, making it 20th in growth as ranked by Forbes. Forbes ranks Killeen at 172nd for business and career development.
Sectors that will likely experience high growth in the Killeen region include healthcare, education, and social services. Retail jobs in Killeen will continue to grow; Wal-Mart employs approximately 650 Killeen residents. Jobs in public administration and local, state, and federal government also offer good employment opportunities; these jobs make up about 28 percent of Killeen jobs.