Somerville, Mass., City and Higher Education Fact

Somerville, Massachusetts, is a densely populated suburb of Boston. Its residents live within a short drive of several well-known universities and colleges as well as numerous community colleges. Read more about the population, economy and postsecondary institutions in or near Somerville below.

Information about Somerville

Located just north of Boston, Somerville, Massachusetts, is a small city. Its approximately 79,000 inhabitants, as of 2014 U.S. census estimates, live in an area of about four square miles, making it one of the more densely-populated cities in New England. According to 2010 census data, about 74% percent of this municipality's population is composed of white residents, while Hispanics and Latinos make up nearly 11% of the population.

Somerville's proximity to Boston, New England's largest city, means that its residents have access to such cultural attractions as the Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum, the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts and the Quincy Market shopping district, among many other historical sites and tourist destinations. In Somerville itself, a yearly arts fair, the ArtBeat festival, draws thousands of visitors, while a number of other art galleries and studios are testament to the city's lively art scene.

Higher Education

Somerville doesn't have any colleges or universities in the city limits, but students can find nearly 60 public and private non-profit postsecondary institutions within 10 miles. Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Tufts University are all located within a couple miles of the city, while Boston University, Suffolk University and Berklee College of Music are about 4 miles away.

Other colleges and universities in the area include Emerson College, Boston College, Lesley University, Brandeis University and the University of Massachusetts at Boston. Several 2-year schools are also located near Somerville, including Urban College of Boston, Bunker Hill Community College and Roxbury Community College.

Economy and Employment

Per 2012 census data, health care and social assistance employed about 4,400 jobs. Retail trade had about 3,200 jobs, while accommodation and food services employed about 2,400 people.

Additionally, the many major universities based in the Boston area provide a source of employment for postsecondary educators, staff and researchers and for the employees of dozens of high-tech firms drawn to the metropolitan area by the research and educational infrastructure.

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