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South Carolina: Jobs and Business In Charleston

Updated on July 18, 2015
Traditional window boxes.
Traditional window boxes. | Source

Trident Area, Southeast SC

The Greater Charleston Metro Area covers the counties of Charleston, Berkeley, and Dorchester. It makes up the Trident Area of South Carolina.

Historic American Colony

South Carolina and port town Charleston on the Atlantic Coast, have a long history of building and rebuilding because of continuing new settlements, migration, business influx, and changes in the landscape along the ocean.

Native Americans inhabited the land from around 10,000 BC until Spanish colonization in the early 1500s in a temporary settlement. In the 1600s, lands passed back and forth through different British hands. Finally the colony broke away under the Declaration of Independence. Charleston was already one of the four major ports of the New Nation (Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and Charleston.)

Various nationalities and religious designations settled in South Carolina from the 1600s - 1800s, including slaves that gained freedom. Black and Native American slaves were captured for work, but the Native Americans escaped first. Today, a museum slave ship replica of the Amistad under the supervision of the US Navy occasionally sails into harbor for historic ship festivals.

Tour of Charleston

Commerce by waterway was a major economic driver even before Revolution and plantation agriculture added to the economy before the American Civil War. After that, Charleston was nearly destroyed in an earthquake in the late 1880s. The city rebuilt and added schools, then railroads for additional trade, and grew into a major tourist attraction. The Historic Downtown preservation project began around 1931 and now lists many National Historic Landmarks. At least 14 preservation organizations operate in Charleston today.

Agriculture was joined economically by manufacturing after the Civil War, but declined in the 1920s. However, fishing remained strng and was joined by military bases and nuclear facilities. Tourism is the third fastest growing industry in Charleston today. Healthcare, Education, and Social Services are all grwoing faster than other industries.

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Top 10 Largest Employers in Charleston

  1. US Navy, Naval Weapons Station 
  2. Medical University Of South Carolina (MUSC) Hospital - a teaching hospital.
  3. Charleston US Air Force Base; 437th Airlift Wing
  4. Charleston County School District
  5. Berkeley County School District
  6. Roper St. Francis Healthcare - Hospitals.
  7. Piggly Wiggly Carolina Co Inc. - Groceries wholesale/retail; HQ and  distribution center
  8. Robert Bosch Corporation  - Antilock brakes.
  9. Dorchester County School District II
  10. Wal-Mart - Retail; requires pre-employment screenings that include a service-related psychology test and other.

Jobs Increases

Indeed.Com listings increased generally since January 2008. There is more than one place to find jobs.
Indeed.Com listings increased generally since January 2008. There is more than one place to find jobs. | Source

Top 10 Jobs by Numbers of Openings (Forecast)

Percentages of increase are displayed beside job titles.

  1. Registered Nurses (RNs) 33% $58,700+ (Median Salary)
  2. Retail Sales 16% $22,000
  3. Food Prep & Service, including fast food & Waitstaff 18% $15,000+ {TOURISM}
  4. Customer Service Representatives 24% Nearly $29,000
  5. Medical Assistants 56% - Nearly $26,000
  6. Operations Managers 20% $84,000
  7. Truck Drivers, Heavy and Tractor-Trailer 25% $35,600
  8. General Maintenance & Repair 19% Neary $32,000
  9. Carpenters 21% $33,500
  10. Mainstream Elementary School Teachers 21% $43,000

Industry Growth Potential

Significant growth is forecasted by the state for the Trident area in:

  1. Healthcare and Social Services
  2. Education Services
  3. Accomodatons & Food Service - Tourism and travel.
  4. Construction
  5. Retail Trade
  6. Professional, Scientific, Tech and Other Services
  7. Transportation and Warehousing - Delivery and storage of goods.
  8. Administration and Waste Management
  9. Finance and Insurance
  10. Real Estate and Leasing/Rental

Looking at the Internet Job Listings Results

We can see from the two tables presented below that job search engines do not all have the same listings. For Charleston and a radius of 25 miles from the center of the city, there are likely 5,500 – 6,000 jobs available, adjusting for overlap, and even more through government employers and elsewhere (see second link below).

Additional Major Job Search Engines: click here.

Charleston Area Jobs: dozens of employer's own listings are arranged by area of the metropolitan area you want to find - South Carolina Information Highway, Jobs in Charleston.

Top 10 Hot Jobs

  1. Assistant Managers
  2. Phsycial Therapists/Assistants
  3. Patient Care Services
  4. Sales and Customer Service
  5. Registered Nurses (RNs)
  6. Sales Managers
  7. Other Managers
  8. Elder Care & Active Senior Care jobs
  9. Restaurant Managers and Assistants
  10. Restaurant General Managers (Head Managers)

Leading Companies Posting Jobs

  1. SAIC - Sciences company
  2. Tenet Healthcare
  3. Trident Health System
  4. Charleston County School District - A Top 10 Employer
  5. StaffPoint Medical
  6. Best Buy, Blockbuster, Pizza Hut, other retail and fast food
  7. Veteran's Administration
  8. ITT Industries
  9. Northrop Grumman
  10. Vought Aircraft Industries

Fun Facts

Higher Education

  • Charleston Southern University
  • College of Charleston
  • Johnson and Wales University
  • Medical University of South Carolina- a Top Employe
  • The Citadel, Military College of South Carolina
  • Trident Technical College.

Medical University of South Carolina

Job openings at this Unversity and teaching hospital are available online at: Positions are divided into a) University, b) Hospital/Med Center, and c) University Medical Associates and Carolina Famly Care.

Current research projects are ongoing in nearly one hundred healthcare areas and most of these areas contain multiple studies. The MUSC Hollings Cancer Center is very active in treatment and seeking new treatments and cures.

This installation also hosts a Medical School, Dental School, and Nursing School as well as the South Carolina College of Pharmacy.

Nursing degrees include a BSN, MSN, Doctor of Nursing Practice (DPN) online, and PhD online, and Post Doctoral work. A variety of scholarships, grants, and minority financial aid programs are available. Funding may be available form WIA and the ARRA Stimulus Package for qualified individuals through county jobs services offices under WIA (links near the beginning of this article).


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    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 8 years ago from North America

      Thanks for the comments! I like to put things together :)

    • Herald Daily profile image

      Herald Daily 8 years ago from A Beach Online

      WOW!!! What a wealth of information there is here! Incredible! You've done such a fantastic job, I really enjoyed this.

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