DeKalb, IL

DeKalb profile

Living in DeKalb

DeKalb is a medium-sized city located in the state of Illinois. With a population of 40,290 people and nine constituent neighborhoods, DeKalb is the 39th largest community in Illinois.

Unlike some cities where white-collar or blue-collar occupations dominate the local economy, DeKalb is neither predominantly one nor the other. Instead, it has a mixed workforce of both white- and blue-collar jobs. Overall, DeKalb is a city of service providers, sales and office workers, and professionals. There are especially a lot of people living in DeKalb who work in sales jobs (10.78%), food service (10.71%), and office and administrative support (10.60%).

In addition, DeKalb is a major college town that has a very high percentage of its residents over 18 years old who are college students. Naturally, collegiate life has a major influence on local DeKalb culture, lifestyle and entertainment options. DeKalb really pulses to the beat of the academic calendar. In DeKalb every fall, returning students reinvigorate the community, who you will notice are all over town, buying groceries, out with friends, and getting acquainted or re-acquainted with each other and DeKalb. One of the beneficial effects that colleges provide is that they tend to be lasting institutions that deliver direct economic benefits to the local economy in the form of such things as jobs for faculty and staff, and spending by students. DeKalb benefits directly from this.

The education level of DeKalb citizens is very high relative to the national average among all cities (21.84%): 38.03% of adults in DeKalb have a bachelor's degree or even advanced degree.

The per capita income in DeKalb in 2018 was $24,819, which is lower middle income relative to Illinois and the nation. This equates to an annual income of $99,276 for a family of four. However, DeKalb contains both very wealthy and poor people as well.

DeKalb is an extremely ethnically-diverse city. The people who call DeKalb home describe themselves as belonging to a variety of racial and ethnic groups. The greatest number of DeKalb residents report their race to be White, followed by Black or African-American. DeKalb also has a sizeable Hispanic population (people of Hispanic origin can be of any race). People of Hispanic or Latino origin account for 15.35% of the city’s residents. Important ancestries of people in DeKalb include German, Irish, English, Italian, and Polish.

The most common language spoken in DeKalb is English. Other important languages spoken here include Spanish and Arabic.