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Destination States in the Tech Industry

Virginia is a winning region for jobs in the IT and engineering fields, as examined in the CareerCast.com Best Jobs in Virginia 2013 report. But it’s not the only state with a wealth of opportunity for those with a technical expertise.

Some of the nation’s top states for IT job seekers are synonymous with the industry, but a few unexpected destinations are powering the 21st Century’s move toward a more telecommunicative world.

California

The Golden State is the home of Silicon Valley, the birthplace and global hub of computing technology. The Bay Area has had its ups and downs, including a major bubble burst in the early 2000s, but remains the world’s IT epicenter.

According to Forbes, five of the world’s top 10 software companies are based in California. The state’s computer and information systems managers earn a mean salary of $144,240, reports the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

California also has a growing tech presence beyond Silicon Valley. San Diego-based Qualcomm is one of the top hiring corporations of job seekers ages 18 to 30, and San Diego County is home to a burgeoning biotech industry.

Texas

Texas is an increasingly attractive hub for IT companies due to the state’s tax rate. Austin is both Texas’ state capital and its technological capital. The city has one of the highest employment concentrations for both computer programmers and computer & information systems managers, per BLS estimates. Both also earn a mean salary well over six figures there.

Louisiana

CenturyLink is one of the most active employers in Louisiana, and continuing to grow through renewed commitment to the state. One of the ways in which the Louisiana tech industry is expanding is outreach to the state’s universities. Those seeking to forge their own path in the industry have a healthy environment in which to do so: Entrepreneur.com grades the state an A for fostering start-up business.

Washington

Of the American companies on Forbes’ list of the top 10 software firms, No. 1 is based in Washington. Microsoft is the dominant giant in software, and an estimated 40,000-plus are on the company’s payroll in the Apple State alone.

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