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News Release Information

Friday, June 03, 2022

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Occupational Employment and Wages in Syracuse — May 2021

Workers in the Syracuse, NY Metropolitan Statistical Area had an average (mean) hourly wage of $27.88 in May 2021, compared to the nationwide average of $28.01, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Chief Regional Economist Martin Kohli noted that, after testing for statistical significance, wages in the local area were higher than their respective national averages in 11 of the 22 major occupational groups, including educational instruction and library, construction and extraction, and food preparation and serving related. Seven groups had significantly lower wages than their respective national averages, including computer and mathematical; legal; and life, physical, and social science.

When compared to the nationwide distribution, Syracuse area employment was more highly concentrated in 7 of the 22 occupational groups, including educational instruction and library, healthcare practitioners and technical, and office and administrative support. Fourteen groups had employment shares significantly below their national representation, including management, transportation and material moving, and computer and mathematical. (See table A.)

Table A. Occupational employment and wages by major occupational group, United States and the Syracuse metropolitan area, and measures of statistical significance, May 2021
Major occupational group Percent of total employment Mean hourly wage
United States Syracuse United States Syracuse Percent difference (1)

Total, all occupations

100.0 100.0 $28.01 $27.88 0


6.3 4.8* 59.31 59.01 -1

Business and financial operations

6.4 5.4* 39.72 38.47* -3

Computer and mathematical

3.3 2.2* 48.01 42.20* -12

Architecture and engineering

1.7 2.1* 44.10 42.54* -4

Life, physical, and social science

0.9 0.8* 38.81 35.65* -8

Community and social service

1.6 2.3* 25.94 24.56* -5


0.8 0.8* 54.38 50.01* -8

Educational instruction and library

5.8 8.5* 29.88 32.26* 8

Arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media

1.3 1.1* 31.78 32.03 1

Healthcare practitioners and technical

6.2 7.5* 43.80 42.17* -4

Healthcare support

4.7 4.5* 16.02 16.65* 4

Protective service

2.4 2.2* 25.68 27.21* 6

Food preparation and serving related

8.0 7.7* 14.16 16.36* 16

Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance

2.9 3.2* 16.23 16.53* 2

Personal care and service

1.8 1.6* 16.17 16.60* 3

Sales and related

9.4 9.3 22.15 21.95 -1

Office and administrative support

13.0 14.1* 20.88 21.47* 3

Farming, fishing, and forestry

0.3 0.1* 16.70 19.11* 14

Construction and extraction

4.2 4.0* 26.87 29.15* 8

Installation, maintenance, and repair

4.0 4.7* 25.66 26.39* 3


6.0 5.3* 20.71 22.88* 10

Transportation and material moving

9.0 7.8* 19.88 19.77 -1

(1) A positive percent difference measures how much the mean wage in the Syracuse, NY Metropolitan Statistical Area is above the national mean wage, while a negative difference reflects a lower wage.
* The mean hourly wage or percent share of employment is significantly different from the national average of all areas at the 90-percent confidence level.

One occupational group—educational instruction and library—was chosen to illustrate the diversity of data available for any of the 22 major occupational categories. Syracuse had 23,680 jobs in educational instruction and library, accounting for 8.5 percent of local area employment, significantly higher than the 5.8-percent share nationally. The average hourly wage for this occupational group locally was $32.26, significantly above the national wage of $29.88.

Some of the larger detailed occupations within the educational instruction and library group included teaching assistants, except postsecondary (3,730); elementary school teachers, except special education (3,020); and secondary school teachers, except special and career/technical education (2,830). Among the higher-paying jobs in this group were postsecondary engineering and postsecondary business teachers, with mean annual wages of $109,670 and $107,980, respectively. At the lower end of the wage scale were teaching assistants, except postsecondary ($32,510), and short-term substitute teachers ($36,510). (Detailed data for the educational instruction and library occupations are presented in table 1; for a complete listing of detailed occupations available go to

Location quotients allow us to explore the occupational make-up of a metropolitan area by comparing the composition of jobs in an area relative to the national average. (See table 1.) For example, a location quotient of 2.0 indicates that an occupation accounts for twice the share of employment in the area than it does nationally. In the Syracuse area, above-average concentrations of employment were found in many of the occupations within the educational instruction and library group. For instance, postsecondary health specialties teachers were employed at 4.2 times the national rate in Syracuse, and postsecondary computer science teachers at 3.3 times the U.S. average. Tutors had a location quotient of 1.0 in Syracuse, indicating that this particular occupation’s local and national employment shares were similar.

These statistics are from the Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) survey, a federal-state cooperative program between BLS and State Workforce Agencies, in this case, the New York State Department of Labor.

Changes to the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Data

With the May 2021 estimates release, the Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) program has implemented a new model-based (MB3) estimation method. For more information, see the May 2021 Survey Methods and Reliability Statement at and the Monthly Labor Review article at OEWS estimates for the years 2015-19 were recalculated using the new estimation method and are available as research estimates at

The May 2021 OEWS estimates are also the first estimates based entirely on survey data collected using the 2018 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system. To improve data quality, the OEWS program aggregates some occupations to the SOC broad occupation level or as OEWS-specific combinations of 2018 SOC detailed occupations.

Technical Note

The Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) survey is a semiannual survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in nonfarm establishments in the United States. The OEWS data available from BLS include cross-industry occupational employment and wage estimates for the nation; over 580 areas, including states and the District of Columbia, metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), nonmetropolitan areas, and territories; national industry-specific estimates at the NAICS sector, 3-digit, most 4-digit, and selected 5- and 6-digit industry levels, and national estimates by ownership across all industries and for schools and hospitals. OEWS data are available at

The OEWS survey is a cooperative effort between BLS and the State Workforce Agencies (SWAs). BLS funds the survey and provides the procedures and technical support, while the State Workforce Agencies collect most of the data. OEWS estimates are constructed from a sample of about 1.1 million establishments. Each year, two semiannual panels of approximately 179,000 to 187,000 sampled establishments are contacted, one panel in May and the other in November. Responses are obtained by Internet or other electronic means, mail, email, telephone, or personal visit. The May 2021 estimates are based on responses from six semiannual panels collected over a 3-year period: May 2021, November 2020, May 2020, November 2019, May 2019, and November 2018. The unweighted sampled employment of 82 million across all six semiannual panels represents approximately 62 percent of total national employment. The overall national response rate for the six panels, based on the 50 states and the District of Columbia, is 67.2 percent based on establishments and 64.5 percent based on weighted sampled employment. The sample in the Syracuse, NY Metropolitan Statistical Area included 2,571 establishments with a response rate of 77 percent. For more information about OEWS concepts and methodology, go to

A value that is statistically different from another does not necessarily mean that the difference has economic or practical significance. Statistical significance is concerned with the ability to make confident statements about a universe based on a sample. It is entirely possible that a large difference between two values is not significantly different statistically, while a small difference is, since both the size and heterogeneity of the sample affect the relative error of the data being tested.

Metropolitan area definitions

The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.

The Syracuse, NY Metropolitan Statistical Area includes Madison, Onondaga, and Oswego Counties.

For more information

Answers to frequently asked questions about the OEWS data are available at Detailed information about the OEWS program is available at

Information in this release will be made available to individuals with sensory impairments upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Telecommunications Relay Service: 7-1-1.

Table 1. Employment and wage data for educational instruction and library occupations, Syracuse metropolitan area, May 2021
Occupation (1) Employment Mean wages
Level (2) Location quotient (3) Hourly Annual (4)

Educational instruction and library occupations

23,680 1.5 $32.26 $67,100

Business teachers, postsecondary

410 2.6 (6) 107,980

Computer science teachers, postsecondary

240 3.3 (6) 90,500

Mathematical science teachers, postsecondary

160 1.9 (6) 96,640

Engineering teachers, postsecondary

190 2.7 (6) 109,670

Biological science teachers, postsecondary

180 1.9 (6) 91,850

Atmospheric, earth, marine, and space sciences teachers, postsecondary

70 3.5 (6) 98,640

Chemistry teachers, postsecondary

80 1.9 (6) 84,720

Physics teachers, postsecondary

70 2.6 (6) 97,150

Economics teachers, postsecondary

80 3.4 (5) (5)

Psychology teachers, postsecondary

110 1.6 (6) 82,850

Sociology teachers, postsecondary

50 2.2 (6) 90,180

Social sciences teachers, postsecondary, all other

130 4.1 (6) 94,130

Health specialties teachers, postsecondary

1,590 4.2 (6) 84,370

Nursing instructors and teachers, postsecondary

170 1.3 (6) 87,430

Education teachers, postsecondary

190 1.6 (6) 69,980

Criminal justice and law enforcement teachers, postsecondary

70 2.5 (6) 71,220

Art, drama, and music teachers, postsecondary

590 3.1 (6) 92,490

English language and literature teachers, postsecondary

290 2.5 (6) 83,090

History teachers, postsecondary

90 2.5 (6) 83,800

Philosophy and religion teachers, postsecondary

100 2.4 (5) (5)

Career/technical education teachers, postsecondary

170 0.8 39.39 81,920

Postsecondary teachers, all other

80 0.2 (6) 82,730

Preschool teachers, except special education

610 0.8 18.48 38,440

Kindergarten teachers, except special education

230 1.0 (6) 67,630

Elementary school teachers, except special education

3,020 1.1 (6) 70,840

Middle school teachers, except special and career/technical education

1,600 1.4 (6) 78,060

Career/technical education teachers, middle school

80 3.3 (6) 70,310

Secondary school teachers, except special and career/technical education

2,830 1.4 (6) 74,790

Career/technical education teachers, secondary school

250 1.5 (6) 77,490

Special education teachers, preschool

80 1.9 (6) 60,240

Special education teachers, kindergarten and elementary school

580 1.6 (6) 72,570

Special education teachers, middle school

240 1.5 (6) 73,000

Special education teachers, secondary school

460 1.6 (6) 75,990

Adult basic education, adult secondary education, and english as a second language instructors

100 1.3 30.08 62,560

Self-enrichment teachers

510 1.2 25.09 52,190

Substitute teachers, short-term

990 1.3 17.56 36,510


290 1.0 26.02 54,120


30 1.4 26.19 54,480

Librarians and media collections specialists

410 1.6 31.07 64,630

Library technicians

190 1.3 19.10 39,730

Instructional coordinators

630 1.7 35.64 74,120

Teaching assistants, postsecondary

670 2.8 (6) 49,880

Teaching assistants, except postsecondary

3,730 1.6 (6) 32,510

(1) For a complete listing of all detailed occupations in the Syracuse, NY Metropolitan Statistical Area, see
(2) Estimates for detailed occupations may not sum to the totals due to rounding, and because the totals may include occupations that are not shown separately. Estimates do not include self-employed workers.
(3) The location quotient is the ratio of the area concentration of occupational employment to the national average concentration. A location quotient greater than one indicates the occupation has a higher share of employment than average, and a location quotient less than one indicates the occupation is less prevalent in the area than average.
(4) Annual wages have been calculated by multiplying the hourly mean wage by a "year-round, full-time" hours figure of 2,080 hours; for those occupations where there is not an hourly mean wage published, the annual wage has been directly calculated from the reported survey data.
(5) Estimate not released.
(6) Wages for some occupations that do not generally work year-round, full time, are reported either as hourly wages or annual salaries depending on how they are typically paid.


Last Modified Date: Friday, June 03, 2022