ST. LOUIS — St. Louis is experiencing a so-called "brain drain" – losing more college-educated individuals than it has gained since 2010, according to a Business Journal analysis of census data.
But in a new ranking of the best cities for college graduates, St. Louis not only retained a spot among the top 10, it rose in the ranking, according to an annual study by financial website SmartAsset.
St. Louis has steadily climbed in the ranking the past few years, coming in at No. 3 on the 2022 ranking, up from fourth in 2021, ninth in 2020 and 10th in 2019. This is the eighth iteration of SmartAsset's ranking, and the city has been in the top 10 in all but the first two years of the study.
SmartAsset studied data for 113 of the largest U.S. cities across three categories: jobs, affordability and fun. Among the metrics it considered were unemployment rates, monthly median rent, cost of living, the concentration of entertainment and dining establishments, the percentage of the population ages 20 to 29 and Yelp reviews.
This year's ranking touted St. Louis' for having the sixth-highest fun rating across the study, which SmartAsset credited in large part to average bar and restaurant Yelp scores that were among the top 15. The city also did well for being among the most affordable, with a median monthly rent of $659 (ninth lowest), and a cost of living of $23,462 (18th lowest).
Cincinnati topped the ranking for the fourth year in a row, followed by Columbus, Ohio, at No. 2; St. Louis at No. 3; Milwaukee at No. 4 and Madison, Wisconsin, rounding out the top 5.
Read more about the study's findings on the St. Louis Business Journal website.