Aug 18, 2008

A Makeover for Michigan

Where have all the young and educated gone? Research has shown that some cities are having problems retaining their young and educated workers, like Michigan. Their children are graduating from Michigan’s colleges and universities but, are packing up and leaving to go to other thriving and more attractive cities such as Chicago, Denver, and Minneapolis; taking with them their commoditized skilled talents.

Research published in February by Michigan Future, Inc., an Ann Arbor public policy think tank, shows that the states with the lowest unemployment rates and highest personal income levels have at least one large metropolitan area with a high concentration of college-educated young people. The research found none of the cities is in Michigan. Not one.

So, what is the young and educated looking for?

Young adults are looking for cities that will harbor many of the night-life, socializing activities and they also inhabits many of the high-paying jobs as well. They want the coffee shops, “walkable” neighborhoods, affordable rental housing and public transportation and the good paying job is a big bonus.

Massachusetts is suffering from the same problem. One in five young adults expects to leave Massachusetts during the next five years due to amid frustrations with the high cost of living and the state government’s response to their concerns, according to a new survey. High taxes, housing and health care cost are a big turnoff for young adults. Twenty-two percent do not expect to be in the bay area in the next 5 years, according to the survey. These are critical economic issues that matter to young adults.

So, what will keep you in the city?

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