Each Of The 50 States Has Its Own Unique Identity. These Identities Have Been Shaped Over Decades And Centuries And Are Often Defined, At Least In Part, By Economic Forces. These Are The Most Iconic Jobs In Each State.
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Published April 5, 2021
By Samuel Stebbins [24/7 Wall St. via The Center Square] –
Whether it is agriculture in California or resource extraction in Texas, certain industries — and therefore certain jobs — are far more common in some states than others. Often, these occupations serve as both economic engines and as symbols of local identity.
Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on the concentration of jobs in a given state relative to their concentration nationwide, 24/7 Wall St. identified the most iconic job in each state.
Home to Nashville — also known as Music City — Tennessee’s most iconic jobs are in music.
Musicians and singers are nearly three times more concentrated in Tennessee than they are nationwide.
The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville is one of the most famous venues in American music, and has counted the likes Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn, Johnny Paycheck, and Willie Nelson among its members.
And for every music legend associated with Nashville, there are hundreds of aspiring artists as well as lesser known session musicians, backup singers, and bar and nightclub performers across Tennessee.
To determine the most iconic job by state, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the relative concentration of occupations within all 50 states with data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ May 2019 Occupational Employment Statistics program.
Detailed occupations were ranked based on location quotient — the concentration of an occupation within a state’s labor force relative to the concentration in the national labor force — as of 2019. Additional data on median annual wage at the state and national levels also came from the BLS.
This is the most iconic job in every state.
|State:||Most iconic job:||State workers in job:||Concentration relative to US:|
|Alabama||Metal-refining furnace operators||1,390||6 times greater|
|Alaska||Misc. mining machine operators||460||15 times greater|
|Arizona||Plasterers and stucco masons||2,340||4 times greater|
|Arkansas||Misc. food processing workers||4,080||11 times greater|
|California||Farmworkers and laborers||201,440||6 times greater|
|Colorado||Atmospheric and space scientists||970||6 times greater|
|Connecticut||Actuaries||1,350||5 times greater|
|Delaware||Chemists||1,350||5 times greater|
|Florida||Ship engineers||1,520||3 times greater|
|Georgia||Textile winding machine operators||12,070||13 times greater|
|Hawaii||Water vessel captains||1,270||9 times greater|
|Idaho||Nuclear technicians||330||10 times greater|
|Illinois||Rail car repairers||3,120||3 times greater|
|Indiana||Engine assemblers||7,990||8 times greater|
|Iowa||Wind turbine technicians||480||8 times greater|
|Kansas||Aircraft assemblers||8,860||22 times greater|
|Kentucky||Farm and home management educators||1,070||10 times greater|
|Louisiana||Sailors and marine oilers||7,340||18 times greater|
|Maine||Shoe machine operators||390||19 times greater|
|Maryland||Physicists||1,880||6 times greater|
|Massachusetts||Medical scientists||16,860||5 times greater|
|Michigan||Engine assemblers||9,580||7 times greater|
|Minnesota||Wind turbine technicians||500||4 times greater|
|Mississippi||Fallers||400||14 times greater|
|Missouri||Locomotive engineers||1,350||2 times greater|
|Montana||Forest and conservation technicians||860||14 times greater|
|Nebraska||Meat cutters and trimmers||9,200||9 times greater|
|Nevada||Gambling dealers||22,580||24 times greater|
|New Hampshire||Log graders and scalers||70||5 times greater|
|New Jersey||Biochemists and biophysicists||7,280||8 times greater|
|New Mexico||Physicists||1,740||19 times greater|
|New York||Fashion designers||8,460||6 times greater|
|North Carolina||Textile machine operators||2,020||8 times greater|
|North Dakota||Wellhead pumpers||1,110||30 times greater|
|Ohio||Foundry mold and coremakers||3,000||5 times greater|
|Oklahoma||Oil and gas drill operators||3,480||15 times greater|
|Oregon||Misc. logging workers||1,210||25 times greater|
|Pennsylvania||Metal pourers and casters||1,080||3 times greater|
|Rhode Island||Jewelers||780||10 times greater|
|South Carolina||Tire builders||3,970||13 times greater|
|South Dakota||Soil and plant scientists||580||14 times greater|
|Tennessee||Musicians and singers||2,170||3 times greater|
|Texas||Petroleum engineers||18,720||7 times greater|
|Utah||Mining machine operators||1,400||9 times greater|
|Vermont||Fallers||50||5 times greater|
|Virginia||Marine engineers and naval architects||2,520||8 times greater|
|Washington||Avionics technicians||3,180||6 times greater|
|West Virginia||Mining machine operators||1,370||68 times greater|
|Wisconsin||Animal breeders||260||8 times greater|
|Wyoming||Oil and gas service unit operators||1,950||20 times greater|