Workforce and Training

Boulder boasts one of the nation’s most educated workforces. Named the #1 “most educated city in America” by Forbes magazine, Boulder has the highest percentage of college graduates in the nation. The city is also ranked among the highest in graduate and doctoral degrees per capita in the U.S.

Boulder’s workforce is employed in a variety of occupations with a high concentration in white collar and service occupations. The table below shows employment and wage data by occupation for the Boulder MSA.

Employment and Wage Data by Occupation
Occupation# of Employees% of EmployeesMedian HourlyAverage Annual
All Occupations 159,440 100.0% $19.68 $54,770
Architecture and engineering 5,820 3.7% $39.42 $88,990
Arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media 3,130 2.0% $20.62 $50,830
Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance 4,120 2.6% $12.12 $27,860
Business and financial operations 10,970 6.9% $31.85 $73,560
Community and social services 2,490 1.6% $19.76 $43,420
Computer and mathematical 11,940 7.5% $41.18 $90,730
Construction and extraction 3,600 2.3% $18.27 $41,590
Education, training, and library 10,930 6.9% $23.77 $54,330
Farming, fishing, and forestry 270 0.2% $13.96 $30,020
Food preparation and serving 15,690 9.8% $9.26 $22,920
Healthcare practitioner and technical 8,290 5.2% $31.57 $74,320
Installation, maintenance, and repair 4,060 2.5% $20.16 $44,270
Legal 1,210 0.8% $33.22 $98,300
Life, physical, and social science 4,680 2.9% $40.42 $90,360
Management 7,470 4.7% $55.99 $128,200
Office and administrative support 24,210 15.2% $16.78 $37,490
Personal care and service 4,310 2.7% $11.85 $30,080
Production 8,480 5.3% $15.91 $36,860
Protective service 2,070 1.3% $23.34 $47,500
Sales and related 17,160 10.8% $14.29 $45,360
Transportation and material moving 5,260 3.3% $14.29 $38,830

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2012 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

Workers can add to their knowledge base by taking advantage of Boulder’s many adult educational programs. Area employers can also tap this vast pool of expertise to train workers in specific skills.

University of Colorado – Boulder is home to one of the nation’s leading public research universities. With over 29,000 on campus degree-seeking students and an operating budget of $961 million, the University of Colorado is a powerful engine for Boulder’s economy. CU offers a number of nationally recognized programs and is home to seven MacArthur Fellowship (“genius grant”) winners and four Nobel laureates. The University has over 90 research centers, institutes, and laboratories, with $359 million in sponsored research funding during fiscal year 2010-11.

Through its Division of Continuing Education and Professional Studies, CU offers a online, weekend, and evening courses in almost every subject area. Students can complete undergraduate or graduate degrees, earn certificates or enhance skills.

Front Range Community College – The Boulder County campus of Front Range Community College offers day, evening, and weekend courses and numerous degree and certificate options. Workforce training for business and industry, small business development services, and personal development classes are also available.

Naropa University – Boulder is also home to Naropa University, a private, non-profit, non-sectarian liberal arts institution dedicated to advancing contemplative education. Accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, the university offers undergraduate and graduate programs in the arts, education, environmental leadership, psychology, and religious studies as well as professional development training and classes for the community.

Workforce Boulder County provides free services to Boulder area employers and job seekers. Employer services include recruitment assistance, pre-screening and referral services, and tax credit and training reimbursement programs. Services for job seekers include training, job listings, computer and internet access, and career counseling.