Famous for icons like the Golden Gate Bridge, Chinatown, Painted Lady Victorian houses and cable cars, the "City by the Bay" is an international tourist destination. But along with its robust tourism industry, San Francisco is also a hub of entrepreneurship, finance, biotechnology and art.
Employment in San Francisco
Due to its role during the California Gold Rush in the 1800's, San Francisco was and still is the financial epicenter on the west coast of the U.S.
Many national and international financial firms have regional headquarters in San Francisco including Bank of the West, Wells Fargo, and Charles Schwab. Major production facilities for the U.S. Mint as well as the 12th district of the U.S. Federal Reserve have home bases in the city.
But other industries are also vibrant in San Francisco, led to a great extent by the city's small businesses and venture capitalists. In fact, small businesses with fewer than 10 employees and self-employed firms make up 85% of city enterprises.
The ciy is closely tied to Internet firms in the nearby "Silicon Valley", and San Francisco-area technology companies played a large role in the late 1990s dot-com boom, and the subsequent and more recent Web 2.0 boom. Start-ups like Craigslist.org, Twitter, Salesforce.com and Wikimedia all have headquarters in San Francisco. And nearby Mountain View is well known as the home to search powerhouse Google.
Biotechnology and healthcare are other major industries in San Francisco. The University of California - San Francisco (UCSF) Medical Center is ranked as one of the top ten hospitals in the U.S., and UCSF, which only provides graduate education in the health and biomedical sciences, is the second largest employer in the city.
And of course, as one of the most visited places on the planet, the arts, entertainment, and hospitality industries are very strong in San Francisco.
Education in San Francisco
"San Francisco is an 'idea' kind of city," says Dennis Conaghan, executive director for the San Francisco Center for Economic Development. "It's very white collar, with people in professional jobs."
So how can you grab one of these white collar, professional jobs? Higher or continuing education is the answer.
The University of California - San Francisco and offers graduate-level programs in health sciences -- biological, biomedical, pharmaceutical, nursing, social and behavioral sciences. San Francisco State University is part of the California State University system, and the community college City College of San Francisco has one of the largest enrollments in the nation for a community college.
Private universities include the University of San Francisco, the oldest university in the city, and professional training schools such as the Academy of Art University, the San Francisco Art Institute and Golden Gate University.
Popular schools in San Francisco include: