Swarthmore, PA
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Swarthmore profile


Living in Swarthmore


Swarthmore is a somewhat small borough located in the state of Pennsylvania. With a population of 6,401 people and two constituent neighborhoods, Swarthmore is the 222nd largest community in Pennsylvania. Much of the housing stock in Swarthmore was built prior to World War II, making it one of the older and more historic boroughs in the country.

Swarthmore home prices are not only among the most expensive in Pennsylvania, but Swarthmore real estate also consistently ranks among the most expensive in America.

Swarthmore is a decidedly white-collar borough, with fully 94.63% of the workforce employed in white-collar jobs, well above the national average. Overall, Swarthmore is a borough of professionals, managers, and service providers. There are especially a lot of people living in Swarthmore who work in teaching (17.19%), management occupations (11.23%), and healthcare (9.39%).

Of important note, Swarthmore is also a borough of artists. Swarthmore has more artists, designers and people working in media than 90% of the communities in America. This concentration of artists helps shape Swarthmore’s character.

Also of interest is that Swarthmore has more people living here who work in computers and math than 95% of the places in the US.

Telecommuters are a relatively large percentage of the workforce: 15.85% of people work from home. While this number may seem small overall, as a fraction of the total workforce it is high relative to the nation. These workers are often telecommuters who work in knowledge-based, white-collar professions. For example, Silicon Valley has large numbers of people who telecommute. Other at-home workers may be self-employed people who operate small businesses out of their homes.

Swarthmore is a small town with a large college student population. Because of this, there is a real youthful, hip vibe to the place, and much of the life in the town is centered on the college. This has helped Swarthmore to buck the trend of other small towns that have suffered declining populations over the past 20 to 30 years. Spending by students, and faculty and staff jobs, are a big part of the local economy.

For a small borough, there is also a high proportion of single, often educated, people living in Swarthmore. This is not typical for smaller communities in America, and adds a feeling of vibrancy to Swarthmore.

Swarthmore is a good choice for families with children because of several factors. Many other families with children live here, making it a place where both parents and children are more likely to develop social ties with other families. The borough’s good public school district and large population of college-educated adults provide an environment conducive to academic success. Many people own their own single-family homes, providing areas for children to play and stability in the community. Finally, Swarthmore’s overall crime rate ranks among the lowest in the country, making it one of the safest places to raise a family.

Even though Swarthmore is a smaller borough, it has many people who hop on public transportation – mostly the train for their daily commute to work. Typically, these people are commuting to good jobs in the surrounding cities.

Do you have a 4-year college degree or graduate degree? If so, you may feel right at home in Swarthmore. 77.68% of adults here have a 4-year degree or graduate degree, whereas the national average for all cities and towns is just 21.84%.

The per capita income in Swarthmore in 2010 was $50,108, which is wealthy relative to Pennsylvania and the nation. This equates to an annual income of $200,432 for a family of four.

Swarthmore is a somewhat ethnically-diverse borough. The people who call Swarthmore home describe themselves as belonging to a variety of racial and ethnic groups. The greatest number of Swarthmore residents report their race to be White, followed by Black or African-American. Important ancestries of people in Swarthmore include Irish, German, Italian, English, and Polish.

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