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Lexington, Kentucky is a Smart City for Jobs and Education

Updated on July 16, 2022
Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Ms. Inglish is a successful employment & training pro, setting Midwest regional records with tens of thousands placed in gainful employment.

Man O' War statue in Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington.
Man O' War statue in Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington. | Source

Lexington, Kentucky is known around the globe as the "Horse Capital of the World"

Education Pays and Jobs Continue to Increase

The Lexington - Fayette Urban County is one of the smartest cities in the United States, as determined by Money Magazine from 2008 through 2016.. The Metro Area has one of the highest percentages of post-secondary degree holders at the Bachelor's level or higher in America.

Given the number of colleges and universities in town, it is not surprising that College Teacher is a high-demand occupation here. All job openings have increased since 2008 as well:

  • March 2008 - October 2009: job listings increased by 59%.
  • November 2009: 5,100+ jobs were available.
  • January 2015: Lexington provided job listings for 18,800 openings. That number is about 400% of the November 2009 figure.
  • As unemployment has decreased to 3.6% and holding by mid-2017, jobs have still included over 9,400 openings during July-August 2017.
  • December 2018 saw a consistent 9,000 job openings in the Lexington area.

Lexington Needs Medical Professionals

The largest numbers of advertised positions available during 2016 - through 2017:

  1. Clinical Nurse (RN, BSN, MSN)
  2. Registered Nurse
  3. Physical Therapist
  4. Licensed Practical Nurse
  5. Hospital Physician
  6. Truck Drivers - Individuals, Teams, and Owner Operators
  7. IT Customer Service Reps, IT Technicians
  8. Store Managers and Assistant Managers
  9. Retail Salespeople
  10. Food Service Workers at all levels.

Lexington Healthcare Systems Grow

  • Baptist Healthcare System
  • Central Baptist Hospital
  • Cardinal Hill Rehab Hospital
  • Lexington Shriners Hospital
  • Lexington VA Medical Center
  • Saint Joseph Health System
  • University of Kentucky HealthCare: Specialties include Digestive Health, Gill Heart Institute,Kentucky Children's Hospital,Kentucky Neuroscience Institute, Markey Cancer Center, Orthopedic Surgery, Sports Medicine, Transplant Center. Locations include: Good Samaritan Hospital, Alfred B. Chandler Hospital, KY Children's Hospital, Center for Advanced Surgery, Kentucky Clinic and Clinic South, Spine and Joint Center, Polk-Dalton Clinic, 3 Dental Clinics, additional clinics and services.
  • U of K Medical Center
  • Horses and others: A large number of large and small animal care clinics and hospitals enjoy success in the urban county.

Official Job Projections to 2024

The following positions are estimated by federal, state, and local governments to be the fastest growing jobs. Bold print indicates job titles already appearing frequently in job listings.

  1. Food Service Workers, Cashiers, and their Supervisors
  2. Retail Salespeople
  3. Registered Nurses (RNs) and Nursing Assistants
  4. Childcare Givers
  5. Laborers and Freight Handlers; Pick and Pack, etc.
  6. Factory Assembly Teams
  7. Mainstream Elementary and Secondary School Teachers and Classroom Teaching Assistants
  8. Ranchers and Farmers
  9. Managers in all industries
  10. Health Specialty Instructors

Most Important Job-Listing Companies

  1. Lexington-Fayette Urban County: Government jobs including public schools.
  2. Hiring at least 50,000 more workers coast-to-coast during August and September 2017.
  3. University of Kentucky
  4. Xerox Corporation
  5. KentuckyOne Health
  6. Lexmark
  7. WalMart
  8. Conduent
  9. VA Hospital Medical Center
  10. Lockheed Martin
  11. Toyota Motor Manufacturing
  12. Eastern Kentucky University
  13. Catholic Health Initiatives
  14. Lexington Clinic
  15. Affiliated Computer Services (ASC)

Lexington Downtown Skyline, 2016.
Lexington Downtown Skyline, 2016.

Lexington-Fayette Urban County

This is a unique metropolitan area that combines with its home county, Fayette, to create a large urban community. The combined area is the second largest city in Kentucky and listed among the Top 100 Largest Cities in America and the Top 25 Smartest Cities.

Many residents hold a Bachelor's or Master's Degree or higher educational attainment and many colleges, universities, tech schools, and career academy call the urban county home.

The city and urban county dedicate themselves to green development in order to protect the natural habitat of the Bluegrass Region of Kentucky. Substantial greenspace and other developments uphold that ideal.

Mixed residential and commercial develop occur successfully in an ongoing plan in Downtown Lexington in the University District next to the University of Kentucky. This increased the numbers of businesses, jobs, workers, and students moving into Lexington-Fayette and preserves the greenspaces elsewhere.

Lexington Quarter Horses

Traveler in 1911. This was a famous foundation sire of the breed "Quarter Horse."
Traveler in 1911. This was a famous foundation sire of the breed "Quarter Horse."
  • Kentucky Horse Park: Best place to get close to horses and home of the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010
  • Belle Reve Farm: Continuation of champion lines through the former Poser Farm in Lexington (Marcy Lafferty and Elliot King) and horses owned by William Shatner, former husband to Lafferty, in Versailles KY.
  • The Red Mile Harness Racing: The Red Mile is the second oldest harness racetrack in the United States.

Belle Reve Ranch, Kentucky:
3075 Lexington Rd, Versailles, KY 40383, USA

get directions

Kentucky Horse Park:
Kentucky Horse Park, 4089 Iron Works Pkwy, Lexington, KY 40511, USA

get directions

Red Mile Harness Racing:
1200 Red Mile Rd, Lexington, KY 40504, USA

get directions

Bill and I: Building William Shatner's Belle Reve Ranch
Bill and I: Building William Shatner's Belle Reve Ranch
William Shatner is the most famous horse owner and trainer in America, donating many hours every year to horse-related charity events. Harness trap seems his favorite event and this book helped me discover how and why Shatner began working with and owning horses. In this and books by Shatner himself, the gut-level operation of horse-assisted therapy become clear, although that was not his intent. Belle Reve ranch is home to champions, both human and horse.

Expansive Higher Education

A large number of postsecondary educational opportunities are presented in Lexington-Fayette Urban County.

  • Baptist Seminary of Kentucky
  • Bluegrass Community and Technical College
  • Adult Ed at Bluegrass Community and Technical College
  • Central Kentucky Tech - (859) 246-2400‎
  • Commonwealth Baptist College
  • Images Model Agency: (859) 273-2301‎
  • Indiana Weslyan University - Lexington Branch: (859) 519-3000‎
  • ITT Technical Institute: (859) 246-3300‎
  • Lexington Beauty College Inc
  • Lexington Theological Seminary
  • Midway College - Lexington Branch
  • National Academy of Animal Arts - Dog grooming and related skills.
  • National College
  • Southside Center-Applied Tech
  • Spencerian College of Louisville and Lexington
  • Strayer University
  • Sullivan University Lexington
  • Transylvania University
  • University of Kentucky
  • Wallaces College: (859) 254-8861‎

College Sports Recruitment

Leaders at College Prospects America in the city work with coaches and student athletes to promote solid education and sports success. They help young men and women to attain athletic scholarships and have done so successfully since 1986.

Nicknamed "Athens of the West"

It is evident that Lexington-Fayette supports a substantial amount of high quality educational opportunities. It has also been part of American history since the beginning.

Founded in 1775 by William McConnell and associate frontiersmen and settlers, Lexington was first named McConnell Springs for the campground honoring William, where the men settled temporarily on the edge of what is now the City of Lexington with over 282,000 people in 2008

The men received notices that the first shots were fired in the American Revolution in Lexington, Massachusetts and in a spurt of patriotism, renamed their settlement of whites and Native Americans, a stockade, and a few cabins "Lexington."

Kentucky was part of Virginia at this time, but Virginia granted it partial independence and cut it into three counties, one of them Fayette in 1780. Lexington was named capital of the county in 1782 and quickly became the largest city in the territory and state of Kentucky until industrialism arose and grew other cities as well. It survived the Civil War and Henry Clay, Secretary of State, lived in Lexington.

Today, over 30 National Historic Sites are preserved in and around Lexington.


  • Commerce Lexington Inc.; Bluegrass Economic Advancement Movement. Retrieved July 23, 2017.
  • Retrieved July 27, 2017.
  • Retrieved July 24, 2017.
  • Lexington Labor Market Information. Retrieved July 26, 2017.
  • Ronan, A.U. Celebrity Equestrians: William Shatner. Horse Nation. June 12, 2014. Retrieved May 26, 2016.
  • Smith, D.E. Bill and I: Building William Shatner's Belle Reve Ranch. CreateSpace. April 28, 2012.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2009 Patty Inglish MS


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