Known as "The City of the Crosses," Las Cruces is the second-largest city in New Mexico, with a population of 101,324. The city got its name when troops in 1852 heard the news of a fatal attack by the Mescalero-Apache Indians on a 50-man convoy. The troops buried the dead in separate graves marked by mounds with small crosses in each. Las Cruces is home to the state's only grant university, New Mexico State University, which has almost 20,000 students. The city boasts a scenic, mountainous landscape formed by the Organ, Dona Ana and Robledo Mountains.
Many of the city's museums celebrate its history, such as the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum and the Las Cruces Railroad Museum. The city also hosts a number of annual events, such as the Whole Enchilada Fiesta, which includes the cooking of The World's Largest Enchilada.
The cost of living in Las Cruces, NM is 11.2 percent below the national average. The median home price is $110,800, and the median household income from Las Cruces Jobs is $36,214. Home prices rose by 11.6 percent in the city last year, while household income growth declined by 0.4 percent.
Las Cruces Job Opportunities
The aerospace and defense industry plays an important role in Las Cruces' economy, as the government operates the White Sands Test Facility and White Sands Missile Range nearby. The White Sands Missile Range contributes more than 4,500 jobs in Las Cruces, NM. After the federal government, New Mexico State University is the city's largest employer, with over 6,500 employees in various education jobs in Las Cruces. Next is the Las Cruces Public School District, which employs more than 3,000 people.
Gadsden Independent Schools and the City of Las Cruces employ about 1,500 people each. The Memorial Medical Center, a hospital serving 300,000 people, has over 1,000 employees. Dona Ana Community College and Dona Ana County also provide over 750 Las Cruces, NM jobs each.
Las Cruces Employment Trends
Forbes ranks Las Cruces 43rd in the nation for job growth. Last year, the city saw 0.9 percent job growth and is expected to experience growth of two percent this year. As of July 2014, Las Cruces had an unemployment rate of 6.8 percent, which is slightly higher than the New Mexico average. Those who can't find Las Cruces jobs might also consider looking for jobs in Mesilla, NM, as it has an equally low unemployment rate and is only about five miles southeast of Las Cruces.