Founded in 1849, Waco, Texas is located halfway between Dallas and Austin along the Brazos and Bosque Rivers. The metropolitan area homes 241,300 residents and three colleges, including Baylor University, the oldest higher education institution in Texas and largest Baptist university in the world. Though considered a small town compared to Texas' many metropolises, Waco is a popular commuter destination, with nearly 20,000 driving in each day. Along with attractions like the historic McLennan County Courthouse and the Cameron Park Zoo, Waco boasts the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum and the Texas Sports Hall of Fame. Plus, since Dr. Pepper was invented in Waco, the Dr. Pepper Museum hosts guests daily in Downtown Waco.
The cost of living in Waco is not only about seven percent cheaper than the national average, but according to Forbes, it's also cheaper than Texas' impressively low average. The only cost of living index that is reported above the national average of 100 is transportation with a figure of 101. The 2013 median household income in Waco was $40,660, and per capita income was just under $22,000. With a $101,800 median household price reported for 2013, home owners in Waco saw a 9.1 percent rise in home values.
Waco Job Opportunities
Numerous education facilities, healthcare providers, manufacturers, and large corporations attribute to Waco's constant economic development. The number one employer of Waco jobs is Providence Healthcare Network which staffs 2,434 individuals between Providence Health Center, Waco's first hospital, and its many primary care and specialized care clinics and facilities. Next, Baylor University employs 2,360 in Waco jobs, and Waco Independent School District (I.D.S.) comes in third with 2,350 public school teachers and faculty members.
Major corporations such as Wal-Mart, H.E.B Stores, and Sanderson Farms, Inc. give a thousand plus Waco residents employment. Other higher education jobs in Waco, TX can be found in McLennan Community College and Texas State Technical College while Hillcrest Health System proves the second largest healthcare employer. At the same time, neighboring cities offer campuses like Texas A&M University-Central Texas and Hill College, so search Hillsboro and Temple for more higher education openings.
Waco Employment Trends
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Waco's August 2014 unemployment rate was 5.6 percent which is lower than the national average of 6.1 percent, but slightly higher than Texas' 5.3 percent. Waco, TX jobs grew in 2013 at a rate of 0.9 percent and a 2.9 percent projected rate for next year shows positive development.
Forbes ranks Waco 53rd on its list of best small cities for businesses and careers and 77th for job growth. Despite education and healthcare's clear priority in the job market, agriculture, tourism, and technology jobs in Waco explain the city's desirability for both local and commuting workers.