The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania doesn’t hold the sex appeal of California, the buzz of New York or the Lone Star State’s ruggedness. It isn’t part of New England yet doesn’t identify with the Midwest or Southeast. While it lacks a strong identity, The Keystone State—the geographic wedge in the east coast arch—does hold a significant place in American history. Pittsburgh, Allentown, State College and Harrisburg all deserve attention but the importance of the state begins with Philadelphia, the birthplace of America and a truly magnificent place to live and work.
Philadelphia, the second largest east coast city, sits just across the Delaware River from New Jersey on the southeastern tip of the state. Philly is a city with a capital “C”, easily the most populated in Pennsylvania and, surprisingly, the fifth largest in the nation. Over 1.5 million residents call it home and many more visit every year. It comes with all the perks of an urban sprawl—walk the streets, catch a train, hop a trolley or ride a bus to one of many attractions. Tourists come in droves to step back into the origins of America. Independence Hall, the Liberty Bell, the First Bank of the United States and the home of the First Continental Congress are just some of the stops on the tour. Dozens of fascinating museums cover the city too—the Franklin Institute, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, National Constitution Center to name a few. That history paired with the nation’s first zoo, art galleries, and eateries the serve $5 cheesesteaks and $50 prime steaks make Philadelphia the right place to be.
Only about a dozen U.S. cities boast four professional sports teams, Philadelphia being among them. The Eagles, Phillies, Flyers and 76ers as well as Major League Soccer’s Union call the City of Brotherly Love home. But the championship drought, which stretched from 1983 through 2008, was tough on Philly sports fanatics—people that expect greatness and loudly express disappointment. Teams of recent vintage in the city have faired better. Aside from the 76ers, a team in complete rebuilding mode, each franchise was top-half in attendance last season. And two of its venues—magnificent Citizens Bank Park and opulent Lincoln Financial Field—were built within the last fifteen years. With Chip Kelly in town the Eagles are flying fast and perennially challenge for the NFC East crown. Ryne Sandberg’s Phillies are an aging team but the arms of Cole Hamels and Cliff Lee are still worth a visit to the park. The Flyers are struggling this season but are frequent visitors to the NHL playoffs and the flailing 76ers roster includes Tony Wroten as well as Nerlens Noel and Joel Embid giving hope to the future. Philadelphia is rich with sports tradition; die-hard fans expect the best from the teams’ general managers, coaches and players.
The Philly economy is diverse, hosting Comcast, several insurance companies—like CIGNA and Colonial Penn—as well as corporations like Aramark, Pep Boys and Urban Outfitters. While it’s economic sectors include manufacturing, financial services, healthcare and oil refining, municipal leaders have wisely steered future growth into information technology and a service-based industry. Did I mention Philadelphia is a sports town? The careers available in the area across the sports industry are vast. If you’re a sales wizard there are sales executive, account manager, business development and territory sales representative jobs available. Can you perform magic with numbers and spreadsheets? Consider the finance and accounting opportunities with local teams and supporting businesses. The success of professional sports teams is largely dependent upon the media that covers it. Technical directors, video production specialists and graphic services professionals are being hired to produce content on all Philly franchises. It is a rabid sports town that craves hard-working, hungry professionals to showcase the city and its teams
The Birthplace of America has transformed dramatically since 1962, when William Penn founded it. Horses tramping down cobblestone roads have been replaced with cars, taxis and buses commuting down shiny, paved streets. Wooden homes and businesses have mostly disappeared in favor of steel and glass skyscrapers and hotels. But the nation’s most famous founders—the likes of Ben Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and John Hancock—walked the same steps as millions of residents and tourists do today. As you wander the streets of Philadelphia revel in that historic connection. Live in Philly. Work in Philly. Love Philly.