Washington, D.C., is the United States capital, a city steeped in history with a modern sensibility. Its neighboring states of Maryland and Virginia both donated land to form "the District." It was named after the first U.S. president, George Washington, who selected the site of the new capital in 1790. The city's population grew when the government expanded during the Civil War, and there were riots in its streets following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Today, Washington is home to all three branches of the United States government, 176 foreign embassies, and many key national museums and monuments.
Washington has a population of 646,449, but more than a million commuters from Maryland and Virginia cause its numbers to swell during the working week. That's because the cost of living in Washington is a whopping 24.3 percent greater than the national average. The median home in Washington will set you back $371,100. However, the income of professionals working in Washington is also high, with a median household income of $89,542, over $5,500 more than in nearby Alexandria.
Washington Job Opportunities
As one might expect, there are many jobs in Washington, D.C. for people who hope to work for the federal government.
The city is also home to a range of educational institutions, so there are plenty of opportunities for administrators and teachers seeking education jobs in Washington. The District of Columbia Public School oversees 123 public schools in the city, while the District of Columbia Public Charter School Board takes care of 52 charter public schools. Washington is also home to several universities, including George Washington University, Georgetown University and the University of the District of Columbia.
Washington welcomes more than 18 million visitors every year, so there are many Washington, D.C. jobs in the tourism sector. The city has more than 120 hotels, more than 100 restaurants and many of America's leading tourist attractions, including the Smithsonian Institute, the National Air and Space Museum, the National Gallery of Art, the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial.
Washington Employment Trends
Growth for Washington jobs has been modest at 1.1 percent over the past 12 months, but forecasters predict there'll be more jobs in Washington in the coming years. The city has a projected annual job growth of 1.5 percent.
Unemployment sits at 5.1 percent, more than a full percentage point below the national average of 6.3 percent. As opportunities for Washington jobs steadily grows, this rate is set to improve.