Brookings is a medium-sized city located in the state of South Dakota. With a population of 23,938 people and four constituent neighborhoods, Brookings is the fourth largest community in South Dakota.
Unlike some cities where white-collar or blue-collar occupations dominate the local economy, Brookings is neither predominantly one nor the other. Instead, it has a mixed workforce of both white- and blue-collar jobs. Overall, Brookings is a city of professionals, sales and office workers, and service providers. There are especially a lot of people living in Brookings who work in office and administrative support (12.92%), sales jobs (10.44%), and management occupations (9.20%).
Brookings is also a major college town with a large number of people who are 18 years or older and attending college. As is often the case in college towns, the many students that live in Brookings have a strong influence on the local culture and entertainment scene, which may seem dormant by comparison in the summer months when much of the student population is away. In the fall, the return of students has a reinvigorating effect on the community. Because colleges are lasting institutions, they have a stabilizing effect on the economy by providing direct local benefits such as jobs for faculty and staff and spending by students. Brookings’s economy is one such example of this.
Brookings, while not large, also appears to be attractive to some younger, educated professionals, who help shape the character of the city.
Residents of the city have the good fortune of having one of the shortest daily commutes compared to the rest of the country. On average, they spend only 13.87 minutes getting to work every day.
The education level of Brookings ranks among the highest in the nation. Of the 25-and-older adult population in Brookings, 44.98% have at least a bachelor's degree. The typical US community has just 21.84% of its adults holding a bachelor's degree or graduate degree.
The per capita income in Brookings in 2010 was $24,751, which is middle income relative to South Dakota and the nation. This equates to an annual income of $99,004 for a family of four. However, Brookings contains both very wealthy and poor people as well.
The people who call Brookings home describe themselves as belonging to a variety of racial and ethnic groups. The greatest number of Brookings residents report their race to be White, followed by Asian. Important ancestries of people in Brookings include German, Norwegian, Irish, English, and Dutch.
The most common language spoken in Brookings is English. Other important languages spoken here include Spanish and Chinese.