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Best Jobs in South Texas and The Rio Grande Valley 2012 - 2022

Where Is South Texas?

The popularly accepted definition of South Texas varies among the entities and individuals that use the term. It ranges from only three counties to a total of about 80% of the state. A good definition for purposes of job search and regional review includes a total of 6 counties along the Rio Grand and the consideration of a few more close by.

First Three Counties

The South Texas Workforce Development Area contains three counties: Jim Hogg, Webb, and Zapata Coutnies and is served by a nonprofit corporation called Workforce Solutions for South Texas, headquartered in Laredo, the county seat of Webb County.

Second Three Counties

The larger popularly recognized South Texas area also includes the counties of Starr, Hidalgo, and Cameron Counties that complete the border of Texas to the south. Some state and county agencies consider additional counties as lying within South Texas and these include Brooks, Duval, Jim Wells, Kenedy, and Willacy Counties.

San Antonio is just above South Texas in Bexar County and is sometimes includes in South Texas proper (see inset map). San Patricio and Nueces Counties are also sometimes included (see map).

[Please click to enlarge.]

Top Job Listings

The May 2009 Unemployment Rate in the State of Texas was reported below that of the USA, 7.1% compared to 9.4% nationwide. This is a remarkable difference and Texas Unemployment remained below the national average through 2013.

Why is Texas less affected by recession and able to employ a greater percentage of its workers than some other US States?

Job openings seem to be skyrocketing in South Texas, particularly in the Healthcare Industry, with some interesting specialties. Robotic Systems is one such medical speciality field with related jobs in in high demand, especially in the Brownsville and Cameron County area.

Among actual job listings for Texas, the Number One Top Job (the one with most job listings) has been consistently Physical Therapist through 2012 and President Barack Obama's first term in office; pluse the end of the Economic Stimulus Package of 2009. In fact, more physical therapists were needed in Texas than anywhere else in America, especially since Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio express the highest demands. The demand stayed high throughout 2013.

Rio Grande River Valley - South Texas


Top 10 Forecast High Demand, High Growth Jobs for South Texas

  1. Education & Health Services - Most actual top job listings in South Texas are falling into the top two-to-four categories in this list, primarily Healthcare.
  2. Health Care & Social Assistance
  3. Educational Services
  4. Ambulatory Health Care Services
  5. Elementary and Secondary Schools
  6. Home Health Care Services
  7. Government
  8. Travel and Tourism: Accommodations and Food Services
  9. Restaurants of all levels, and Taverns
  10. Freight Transport and General Freight Trucking

Cmparison: March 2010

  1. Physical Therapists
  2. Occupational Therapists
  3. Assistant Managers
  4. Salespeople
  5. Store Managers - Retail and small food service stores, coffee shops.
  6. Cashiers
  7. Physicians - Family Practice
  8. Physicians - Internal Medicine
  9. Sales Representatives
  10. Assistant Store Managers

SNAPSHOT: South TX High Demand Jobs January 2012

  1. Company Truck Drivers
  2. Physical Therapists
  3. Dentists
  4. Owner Operator Truckers
  5. Physicians
  6. Pharmacists
  7. Event Specialists
  8. RN licensed Nurses
  9. Physician Assistants
  10. Clinical Psychologists
  11. Clinical Social Workers


Edinburg - Hidalgo County

Hildalgo County lists the largest number of job openings from all sources online, found by and across thousands of job and company sites.

  1. RNs - Nurses
  2. Event Specialists
  3. Physical Therapists
  4. Truck Drivers - all types
  5. Physicians
  6. Dentists
  7. Occupational Therapists
  8. Clinical Psychologists
  9. Clinical Social Workers
  10. Physician Assistants

Top Job Listings: Laredo/Webb County

  1. Truck Drivers - all types.
  2. Physical Therapists and Assistants
  3. Retail Store Managers
  4. Assistant Managers
  5. Physicians/Doctors
  6. Salespeople
  7. Occupational Therapists
  8. Event Specialists
  9. Licensed RN Nurses 0 includes Travel Nursing
  10. Patient Services Technicians

Brownsville & Harlingen - Cameron County

  1. Nurses: RNs, LPNs, LVNs
  2. Phsycians/Doctors
  3. Occupational Therapists
  4. Physical Therapists
  5. Physical Therapy Assistants
  6. Directors of Case Management
  7. Assistant Managers
  8. Social Workers
  9. Clinical Psychologists
  10. Specialists: Urologists - Eligible For Texas State Licensure, Robotic Systems

Notes on Urology:

Scroll to Continue

The Rio Grande Valley is also called the Texas Tropical Playground, Edinburg being about 78 miles from South Padre Island.

Brownsville area offers affordable housing, no state income tax, and semi-tropical weather. Cameron County enjoys 2 hospital campuses serving several counties, also with a new surgicaL trauma team that is top notch.

Opportunities are open in Harlingen and Brownsville. DaVinci Robotics Robotic certification is a plus, but training is available.Hired physicaians will received a guaranteed benefits package, paid malpractice insurance, and paid relocation.

Zapata County

Zapata County is very interesting, because it contains no incorporated cities or towns and its land did not become part of Texas until 1848. However, Zapata is also the name of the community that is the county seat. Not a city or a town, it is called a census-designated place. While not large, it holds the global record for the greatest number of hang-gliding records broken every year from 2000 - 2009.

There are few job openigns in Zapata City or County. but the area draws tourists as a growing Tex-Mex border community on Lake Falcon near the Rio Grand. The historic Downtown area features several historcal buildings preserved by the county government, along with a large plaza.Falcon State Park also draws travelers and several movies have been filmed against the town's Mexican and Spanish architecture. Zapata is also known as a place in which many northerners spend the winters.

Jim Hogg County

Named after a Texas Governor, Jim Hogg County also has no incorporated places. Hebbronville is the census-designated place that serves as county seat. Few jobs are available in this county, as in Zapata. Its historical significance uis that it is named after James Hebbron who purchased one of the first ranches ever started in the area.

Job Listings: Rio Grande City, Starr County

Rio Grande City is the county seat of Starr County, offering around 100 job openings in march 2009, but over 550 in January 2012.

The leading job listings in the Rio Grande City area include:

  1. Clinical Psychologists
  2. Clinical Social Workers
  3. Dentists
  4. RN Nurses
  5. Optometrists
  6. Owner Operator - Truckers
  7. Pharmacists
  8. Physicians
  9. Physician Assistants

The major employers are the USAF, Telereach Corporate, Molina Healthcare,United Vision Logistics, and HCA healthcare.

Check South Texas Job Listings at Indeed.Com

The Rio Grande

Texas Border Fencing Proposal - Impacting Immigration and Business

(From the Christian Science Monitor]

Comments & Job News

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on January 09, 2015:

Thanks for reading and I hope it all proves useful.

Ratiya Lertsakulpatara from Muenster on January 09, 2015:

This is amazing hub, very informative hub.

Maren Elizabeth Morgan from Pennsylvania on January 17, 2012:

Thanks for the research, Patty!

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on December 02, 2010:

I think Texas is generally known for independent business, but look at the major job search engines, because some of them have trending reports and list areas where the most frequently-listed jobs appear. Something like Avon or similar may rise in positions during the Holiday Season as well, althourhg the listing above was in non-holiday months.

TroyM on December 02, 2010:

Avon ladies, wow?! I'd like more info on that. Any suggestions for places to turn for research on how that appeared #1?

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on February 15, 2010:

Eliana - someone must have been driving pretty fast! I better change that figure to miles of distance. Thanks!

Yes - the shortest route on Google maps is indeed 78.4 miles. Good catch, Eliana.

Eliana on February 15, 2010:

Just for quick clarification on the following statement mentioned above:

"The Rio Grande Valley is also called the Texas Tropical Playground, Edinburg being 30 minutes from South Padre Island."

I live in the Lower Rio Grande Valley and can vouch that Edinburg is not 30 minutes from South Padre. It takes roughly 30 minutes to get to Harlingen and then from Harlingen to South Padre is another 30 minutes.

Just wanted to let everyone know that doesn't live in our area know.

kims3003 on January 21, 2010:

This very well thought out and put together. Excellent writing style. A++ job!!

MikeNV from Henderson, NV on December 17, 2009:

The problem with Health Care and Government (Education) Jobs is they really do not produce anything. I realize there is a need for medical equipment, and health care. I'm just saying it's the type of product you hope to never have to need, but or grateful for when you do. They fall more under the category of "necessary". But Right now it's good to find any job you can get.

Our consumptive economy doesn't leave many options when manufacturing and consumptive goods production dries up.

ciidoctor on November 20, 2009:

very useful info

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on August 16, 2009:

Thanks for all the comments!

Jenny Zhang from Ann Arbor, MI on July 07, 2009:

Health Services is big in the Midwest as well. I'm not surprised.

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on June 27, 2009:

Thanks for all the comments, patti and thor6 --

I heard that unemployment for those up to 24 yrs old in Europe is up to 40% and 26% for evryone. That's horrible - how are people living?

thor6 from on June 26, 2009:

I liked that very much,well laid out and informative,especially in this day and age of job losses. I live in Finland and thousands are losing their jobs also. I'm new to this hub pages thing so please have a peek at the 5 i have had a go at writing and tell me what you think. Http://

patti on June 26, 2009:

You do put effort in your hubs. You are a wonderful writee. Thanks for the info. I have no plans for the Rio Valley but one never does know as there are no guarentees. Maybe, I can pass on your info..

Thank you for visiting my hubs. I have since posted many useful home and garden tips. Check it out girl. My love Your friend Cheers

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