STEM workers are in fierce demand and not just in the global epicenter of high tech known as Silicon Valley. According to estimates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, STEM — science, technology, engineering and math — professions will expand 1.7 times faster than non-STEM occupations between 2010 and 2020. That should be welcome news to job seekers with skills in these areas, half of which do not even require a four-year college degree.

Given their growing demand, STEM careers today comprise some of the most lucrative employment, paying higher salaries and boasting far fewer threats of unemployment compared with non-STEM jobs. In fact, the annual average wage for all STEM positions collectively was $85,570 —81 percent more than the national average of $47,230 for all jobs — according to the most recent figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

To identify the best markets for STEM professionals, WalletHub’s analysts compared the 100 largest metropolitan statistical areas, or MSAs, across 16 key metrics. Our data set ranges from per-capita job openings for STEM graduates to annual median wage growth for STEM jobs to the projected demand for STEM workers in 2020. Scroll down for our findings, additional expert commentary and our detailed methodology.

Madison was ranked 7th on the list. See the full article and list here.