Third-worst city to start a career: Stockton, Calif.
Stockton is just 80 miles northeast of San Francisco and Silicon Valley, but it doesn't come close to having either area's high-tech economy.
The city has the 22nd-lowest number of tech jobs as a share of total employment, as well as the the fourth-worst jobless rate among big cities. Additionally, it places sixth from the bottom for entry-level jobs relative to population and 25th-worst for local job growth.
"Stockton may be relatively close to San Francisco, but the good jobs just aren't within commuting distance," Papadimitriou says.
The city has also suffered from high crime rates in recent years, while Inland California's housing bust sent local property values plummeting and foreclosures soaring. All of that ultimately helped drive Stockton's municipal government into bankruptcy in 2012.
Young people will also find underwhelming dating opportunities in town, as Stockton has the 15th-lowest percentage of locals with college degrees and 33rd-smallest number of 25- to 34-year-olds as a share of total population. The city also has the 13th-tiniest number of arts-and-leisure facilities on a per-capita basis.
If you're up for the challenge, Realtor.com lists some 800 Stockton residences for sale.
Second-worst city to start a career: Port St. Lucie, Fla.
Port St. Lucie sits on the Atlantic coast just 110 miles north of Miami, but the job market there has been anything but a day at the beach in recent years.
The Great Recession and South Florida housing bust slammed the community, sending foreclosure rates and unemployment sky high for a time.
Port St. Lucie has America's 16th-lowest median starting salaries these days, along with the 17th-worst level of entry-level jobs relative to population and the 22nd-poorest median-income growth.
As for the dating scene, young grads will find the second-lowest percentage of residents age 25 to 34 and the 21st-smallest per-capita number of locals with bachelor's degrees or higher.
If that doesn't make staging a successful date hard enough, Port St. Lucie also has the 24th-lowest level of arts-and-leisure facilities relative to population.
Those who still want to make the city their home port can find some 2,700 local property listings here.
Worst city to start a career: Modesto, Calif.
"Modesto" means "modest" in Spanish, and that's what recent grads who move there can expect to find -- at best -- in the way of career opportunities.
That's partly due to the fact that Modesto has the seventh-lowest level of tech jobs as a share to total employment even though the city is just some 90 miles east of San Francisco and Silicon Valley.
The community also suffers from a 13.6% local jobless rate -- the second-highest level among major U.S. cities. Grads who move there will also find the 16th-lowest number of entry-level jobs relative to population, as well as the 24th-lowest median starting salaries.
Those looking for dates will have to contend with the 16th-smallest percentage of locals with college degrees and the 28th-lowest level of 25- to 34-year-olds as a fraction of total population.
And even if you do find a date, Modesto offers the 27th-smallest number of arts-and-leisure sites on a per-capita basis.
If you're still at least modestly interested in moving to Modesto, Realtor.com lists some 600 homes there for sale.