Introduction to New Jersey: Careers and Education

Introduction to New Jersey: Careers and Education

New Jersey, commonly referred to as the "Garden State", is the most densely populated state in the U.S.

The state offers a wide variety of degree programs and career opportunities for students of all ages.

Industries and Careers in New Jersey

New Jersey is uniquely diverse in its industrial output.

Rolling hills, salt marshes, sweeping Atlantic coastlands and meadowlands make agriculture and tourism two of the largest industries in the state. In fact, New Jersey is the second largest producer of blueberries in the U.S., and the third largest producer of cranberries. Spinach, peppers, and peaches are also popular state exports, and other farming products include nuts, seafood and dairy. They don't call it the Garden State for nothing.

But industry in New Jersey doesn't stop at the garden gate. Food processing, nuclear energy, oil refining, manufacturing, chemical development and printing and publishing are just a few of the state's other key industries.

New Jersey's location between New York and Philadelphia and along the Atlantic make it a magnet for shipping and transportation.

The state has a strong scientific economy, and is home to major pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer and Bristol-Myers Squibb. Telecommunications companies like Verizon Wireless and Alcatel-Lucent Technologies are also based in the state.

Nearly 25 Fortune 500 firms are headquartered in New Jersey, where they can take advantage of the state's well-educated work force.

Education in New Jersey

Along with public and private schools, there are a variety of health, business and other career/vocational schools in New Jersey that offer hundreds of specialties, from information technology to medical sonography. See this sample of New Jersey schools:

Private Colleges & Universities

Public Colleges & Universities Career & Technical Schools

Of course, the wide industrial output in New Jersey requires that students be well educated.

"In New Jersey, we have more jobs that require an education and skilled workers," says George Koodray, vice president of communications for the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce' Business Coalition for Educational Excellence (BCCE). "It's simply the nature of the economy in the state and the workforce that we have," he continues. "By 2014, most jobs in the state will require a minimum of two years of college."

As the economy in New Jersey increasingly demands that workers have a college education, the BCCE works aggressively to ensure that students are prepared through diverse educational programs.

"Really, you don't want to separate education from the economy," Koodray states. "About 10 years ago, we noticed that students weren't as prepared as they needed to be upon entering the workforce. Now we are driving an array of programs and initiatives for education, three of which are nationally acclaimed," he continues. "We're trying to enable and get students to better prepare for the future."

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