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High Tech Jobs Remain in Great Demand

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With students packing up to go back to college this month with declared or undeclared majors, it’s a good time to consider the fields that graduating students are going into and whether they match up with the skills businesses need.
From 2010 to 2016, students with a degree in computer and information sciences and support services grew at a strong 6.9 percent annualized pace — more than three times as fast as overall graduates (2 percent). This is based on the most recent data from the National Center for Education Statistics on U.S. postsecondary schools.
Growth in the computer field was especially robust in master’s degrees, which more than doubled during this period from 18,114 degrees to 40,316. Bachelor’s degrees in computer programs also experienced strong growth, moving from 40,446 degrees to 66,559 over the same period. 
Those graduates should have no problem finding a job. There were more than 620,000 job openings in the nation for computer occupations, according to Chmura’s Real Time Intelligence.
More than 4,400 job openings for computer occupations are in the Richmond metro area with Capital One and Anthem among the firms with the most job openings.
Among the fastest-growing individual programs over the past several years are those found where the fields of business and mathematics intersect.


Graduates in programs in management sciences and quantitative methods saw impressive growth over the last six years. For example, graduates in business statistics surged from 70 completions to 963 in the nation from 2010 to 2016 and other management sciences and quantitative degrees almost tripled from 638 to 1,908 over the same period.
Large increases in the number of graduates also occurred for students with degrees in statistics and applied mathematics, including financial mathematics where the number of degrees surged from 351 in 2010 to 1,366 six years later.
These graduates shouldn’t have trouble finding jobs either with more than 46,000 job openings in the nation for people with strong quantitative skills.
In the Richmond region, 170 openings are available for these positions with Capital One and Anthem at the top of the list with job openings.
(This article first appeared in the Richmond Times Dispatch on Aug. 7, 2017)
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