For several years, West Virginians have lamented the steady flow of "first on bad lists, last on good lists" syndrome. Some people dismissed the lists as biased, others just shrugged and figured that's where West Virginia will most likely be for some time.
However, the misfortunes of the rest of the country and the relative stability of West Virginia's economy recently have elevated us on some recent lists. Now that we're getting some credit at the top, maybe it's time to start touting them.
Careerbuilders.com recently listed the "Top 25 Best Markets to Find a Job." After years of seeing young people leave the state to find jobs, West Virginians might scratch their heads and allow themselves a little bit of glee to see that we have two cities in the national top 25 list - Morgantown and Charleston!
The list was generated by looking at unemployment rates and job growth. West Virginia currently has a very low unemployment rate and Morgantown in particular has a high job growth rate. The rest of the Top 25 were mostly Western cities.
Of course, each city in West Virginia is showing well for different reasons. In Charleston, the energy boom with coal and natural gas has stimulated the region. In Morgantown, the growth of high-tech and university/research organizations has driven growth.
Whatever the reasons, it's nice to be on top for a change. And here's hoping we stay there for a while.