Amherst is a medium-sized town located in the state of Massachusetts. With a population of 39,924 people and seven constituent neighborhoods, Amherst is the 41st largest community in Massachusetts.
Housing costs in Amherst are among some of the highest in the nation, although real estate prices here don't compare to real estate prices in the most expensive communities in Massachusetts.
Amherst is a decidedly white-collar town, with fully 90.97% of the workforce employed in white-collar jobs, well above the national average. Overall, Amherst is a town of professionals, service providers, and sales and office workers. There are especially a lot of people living in Amherst who work in teaching (16.61%), food service (12.24%), and office and administrative support (12.04%).
Also of interest is that Amherst has more people living here who work in computers and math than 95% of the places in the US.
A relatively large number of people in Amherst telecommute to their jobs. Overall, about 9.14% of the workforce works from home. While this may seem like a small number, as a fraction of the total workforce it ranks among the highest in the country. 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.
Because Amherst has a very large number of students who are 18 years or older and in college, it is thought of as a college town. This has a major influence on local Amherst lifestyle, entertainment, and culture in general. Life in Amherst is very much tied to the academic calendar: when students return from the summer break in the fall, one will notice them out and about, buying groceries, out with friends, and generally getting re-acquainted with each other. In Amherst people study hard and play hard, and there is ample opportunity to do both.
Amherst, while not large, also appears to be attractive to some younger, educated professionals, who help shape the character of the town.
Residents of the town have the good fortune of having one of the shortest daily commutes compared to the rest of the country. On average, they spend only 18.26 minutes getting to work every day.
For the size of the town, public transportation in Amherst is quite heavily used. Mostly, people who use it for their daily commute are taking the bus. For Amherst, the benefits are reduced air pollution and congestion on the highways.
Do you have a 4-year college degree or graduate degree? If so, you may feel right at home in Amherst. 65.67% 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 Amherst in 2018 was $22,363, which is low income relative to Massachusetts, and lower middle income relative to the rest of the US. This equates to an annual income of $89,452 for a family of four. However, Amherst contains both very wealthy and poor people as well.
Amherst is a very ethnically-diverse town. The people who call Amherst home describe themselves as belonging to a variety of racial and ethnic groups. The greatest number of Amherst residents report their race to be White, followed by Asian. Important ancestries of people in Amherst include Irish, Italian, English, German, and Polish.
Foreign born people are also an important part of Amherst's cultural character, accounting for 17.66% of the town’s population.
The most common language spoken in Amherst is English. Other important languages spoken here include Spanish and Chinese.