skip to content
Primary navigation

Metro Region

twin-cities-mapThe Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area is a national leader in finance, advanced manufacturing, agriculture and retailing.

Medical devices, electronics and processed foods are strong suits recognized globally.

Want the freshest data delivered by email? Subscribe to our regional newsletters.

Veterans Day

11/7/2016 2:23:55 PM

Tim O'Neill

On Friday, November 11, Veterans Day will be observed by Americans throughout the United States to celebrate the service of all U.S. military veterans. As an appreciation to those who have served or are currently serving, this month’s local look blog post will focus on veterans in the Twin Cities region.

Veterans in the Twin Cities

According to the 2014 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, there were 166,524 veterans living in the Seven-County Twin Cities Metro Area, making up nearly half (46.9 percent) of Minnesota’s total veteran population. Over one-third (37.6 percent) of these veterans were living in Hennepin County, making it home to the largest number of veterans of any county in Minnesota. Of those veterans living in the Twin Cities, over one-third (60,631 veterans) reported having served during the Vietnam War. Nearly another quarter of veterans living in the Twin Cities (38,536 veterans), reported serving in one of the two Gulf War eras. Specifically, over 21,500 veterans served from the region during the Gulf War era between August, 1990, and August, 2001, and nearly 17,000 veterans have served from September, 2001, to the present. More than 18,700 veterans living in the Twin Cities reported serving during the Korean War, and more than 14,100 veterans reported serving during World War II (Table 1).

Number of Veterans and Period of Service

With such a large population in the Twin Cities, it is vital that veterans have access to employment opportunities in the regional economy. Fortunately, the employment status of veterans in the Twin Cities has dramatically improved in recent years. In 2010, during the nadir of the Great Recession, the unemployment rate for veterans in the Minneapolis-St. Paul Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) spiked at 10.2 percent. This was higher than the overall unemployment rate for veterans at the state level during that time, at 9.3 percent. As of 2015, however, the unemployment rate for veterans in the Minneapolis-St. Paul MSA has plunged to 3.4 percent, similar to the state rate (Table 2). This is lower than the total unemployment rate for the region, at 4.1 percent.

Employment Status of Veterans

Hiring Veterans in the Twin Cities

DEED has employment services specifically targeted at veterans, with the aim of connecting employers searching for quality candidates and veterans searching for life-sustaining career opportunities. For example, here are three easy steps employers can take to successfully hire veterans:

  1. Post your job openings on
  2. Contact a Veterans Employment Representative, available at Twin Cities WorkForce Centers.
  3. Connect with your local Yellow Ribbon network.

Within this tight labor market that the Twin Cities region is experiencing, not only is it beneficial to reach out to veterans looking for work opportunities to fill vacancies, but veterans have the experience, training, and work ethic that employers will appreciate. Why hire a veteran? Leadership, teamwork, efficient under pressure, respect for procedures, integrity, and the list goes on. Find out more about hiring veterans here

Employment Resources for Veterans

It’s also easy for veterans to discover and secure work in the Twin Cities:

  1. Contact a Veterans Employment Representative: While working with employers, these representatives also work one-on-one with veterans to provide custom-tailored services.
  2. Set a career goal using MyMilitary GPS LifePlan.
  3. Post your resume on Beyond these resources, veterans seeking employment should also visit DEED’s main page for veterans' employment services. From this site, veterans can find information on upcoming career fairs, select employer hiring events, job club networking, job transition meetings, and more.

For More Information

Contact Tim O'Neill at 651-259-7401 or email Tim O'Neill.

back to top