Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Youngest in the nation

It’s no secret to Utah’s demographers: Utah maintains the youngest population in the United States. (I once heard it said that you have a greater probability of being rundown by a stroller in Utah than in any other state in the nation.) Higher-than-average fertility and birth rates contribute to Utah’s lowest-in-the-nation median age—29.6 years. Compare that figure to the nationwide median age of 37.3 years. Yes, we really are young.

The state’s relative youth was highlighted recently in CNN Money’s list of “25 Youngest Best Places to Live in America.” Of the 25 smaller towns listed, four are from Utah. Interestingly enough, all four are within the borders of Utah County.

Rank 1     Eagle Mountain; median age 19.9 years
Rank 11   Highland; median age 22.4 years
Rank 12   Saratoga Springs; median age 22.6 years
Rank 15   Cedar Hills; median age 23.2 years

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Utah’s relative youth brings both economic advantages and disadvantages. Of course, educating so many children entails no small expense. However, Utah’s young (and, can we say vibrant) labor force remains attractive to employers and helps to keep Utah’s economy a step ahead of many others. (To paraphrase Field of Dreams, “If you train them, jobs will come.”)

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