As the largest employer in the United States, the federal government has about 2 million civilian workers, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Because of the wide range of positions, the work environments of those employed by the government vary greatly. Although the majority of federal employees work in office buildings, many can also be found at military bases, national parks, airports, laboratories and construction sites. As workers retire over the next decade, job openings are expected to increase in all government-related occupations including those in business, science, administrative support, service, maintenance, engineering and health. If you're interested in working in government, you might want to check out these cities:

Washington, D.C.
Even though 85 percent of federal employees work outside the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, it remains the No. 1 city for federal hiring. It is the headquarters for the majority of federal departments and agencies including the Department of Commerce, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Education. Surrounded by suburbs, Washington, D.C., is a great place to live as it has one of the lowest unemployment rates among metropolitan areas, a steadily decreasing crime rate and significant historical significance.

Arlington, Va.
Just across the Potomac River from the U.S. capital is Arlington, which has seen one of the largest employment growths in the nation. Home to the largest government agency, the Department of Defense, as well as the Department of the Navy, Arlington National Cemetery, the National Science Foundation and the Drug Enforcement Administration, it should come as no surprise that Arlington's largest employer is the federal government. Not only is this a prime place to find a government job, it is also pleasant to live in with more than 100 community service organizations, almost 150 public parks and 86 miles of biking and jogging trails.

Atlanta
With one of the highest concentrations of Fortune 500 companies and institutions of higher education, it's easy to see why Atlanta is one of the fastest growing cities in the country. According to the Metro Atlanta Chamber, this city's labor force consists of more than 2.7 million people, and government is among the top three employment sectors. Atlanta is home to several government agencies' district or regional headquarters including the Federal Reserve's District Six, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's Region II and the Environmental Protection Agency's Region 4. The main headquarters of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is also located here, good news for specialized workers in areas related to public health, as the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that there will be a strong demand for them in the next decade.

Houston
As the largest city in Texas and fourth largest in the United States, Houston has jobs in a wide range of sectors including manufacturing, energy, transportation, aeronautics and health care. According to the Texas Workforce Commission, the government is the second largest industry in the city, employing 15 percent of the workforce. Here you will find many government research institutes, agencies and organizations, as well as the headquarters for NASA, which is ranked among the top five best places to work in the federal government. With a reasonable cost of living and an unemployment rate that is consistently below the nation's average, Houston is an inviting place to build a life on a government salary.

New York 
With more residents than any other city in the country, New York is known for its diverse population, unique culture and continuous economic growth. Not only is New York a bustling center for such industries as business and fashion, it also offers opportunities for people who want to work in the state, local and federal government. The national military installations of forts Hamilton, Wadsworth and Totten are all located within the New York City area, and downtown Manhattan is home to several federal buildings for the United States District Attorney and the FBI.

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