8,000 residents leave Culpeper, Virginia every day for work. What if your business could be the reason they stay?
The U.S. Census Bureau estimates the workforce of Culpeper County, Virginia to be just under 25,000 people – and growing. The reality is the available pool of workers is much, much larger. Even though Culpeper is a hub of economic activity in Central Virginia, approximately 8,000 of its residents leave their county, families and home, every single day for work.
Culpeper’s Labor Market
According to the Virginia Economic Development Partnership report, in 2017 Culpeper’s population was made up of 50.1% male and 49.9% female, with an average age of 39 years. Approximately 3,000 residents were two-year college graduates, 31,203 were two-year college enrollees, and 1,000 were graduates of other college and universities. In 2016, the per capita personal income for Culpeper was $42,889 and the median family income was $76,188. Residents not commuting, work for some of Culpeper’s largest employers, Continental Teves, Inc., TE Connectivity (Rochester Wire & Cable), Cintas, Merchant’s Grocery Co., SWIFT, Inc., as well as many others.
There are many opportunities, in and around Culpeper, for the educational advancement of its workforce. The Piedmont Workforce Network helps businesses grow in Central Virginia through applicant screening, hiring events, job training financial incentives, customized training program design and more. East of the Town of Culpeper, is the Daniel Technology Center, a branch of Germanna Community College. The 39,000 square-foot facility supports workforce development and technology training through a manufacturing technology lab, computer tech lab and interactive video theatre,.
Virginia is also home to outstanding colleges and universities, many in close proximity to Culpeper. More than 85,000 students are enrolled at higher education institutions within 60 miles of Culpeper – this includes twelve community colleges and four universities. James Madison University, George Mason University, University of Virginia and University of Mary Washington all offer exceptional course offerings, graduate programs and online courses.
Residents’ Challenging Daily Commute
If you take a look at commuting patterns in and out of Culpeper, you’ll see that 4,816 workers from surrounding areas travel to Culpeper each day, while 8,789 workers travel away from Culpeper. Even counties north of Culpeper, like Fauquier, have a high percentage of workers who commute outside county lines, most likely to Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. Imagine, for those workers, if they could avoid the standstill traffic and go south instead to Culpeper County?
More than 27% of Culpeper’s residents have a commute time over 60 minutes and 54% commute over 30 minutes. For the Culpeper citizens who travel north, their days usually start at 4:30 a.m. If they’re lucky they can squeeze in a short exercise, or maybe even walk the dog. Of course, scratch those aspirations in the winter, when it’s pitch black dark. Most only have time to make coffee, throw some breakfast together and run a lint roller over their clothes. In the beginning, the drive is easy, it’s relatively straight, a few traffic lights here and there – all in all not so bad. Then they hit Interstate 66, the road that runs straight into Northern Virginia, Washington DC or feeds into the Capital Beltway, and they stop, and wait, and wait some more. Some may only drive to the Vienna Metro Station to catch a train, while others continue to creep their way into Maryland or the District. Each day they put in their 8 or 9 hours at work and then return to their cars only to sit in traffic again. By the time they arrive home, they’ve missed a child’s soccer practice or a family dinner.
According to Ladders, an online career development site, “Researchers from the University of the West England found that a 20 minute increase in round-trip commute time had the same effect on job satisfaction as a 19% reduction in income.” The study also revealed that each additional minute of commute time caused a drop in work satisfaction, mental health and how much a commuter enjoys their free time, while stress levels rose. This is not the first study to find a negative correlation between happiness and commuting.
Just think of the potential an employer who moves to Culpeper or one who expands in the area could offer 8,000 commuters. A chance for a better quality of life. Who wouldn’t want a shorter drive to and from work?
For more information on the available workforce in Culpeper and Demographics, visit www.culpeperva.org/data/demographics.
If you want to learn more about Culpeper’s ready and willing workforce, contact Phil Sheridan at firstname.lastname@example.org.