My roommate told me I ask strange questions.
The answer, it turns out, is mostly the west coast, the north east… and Colorado. It’s a little bit too small to see on the map, but the area with the greatest concentration by far is Washington D.C. The infographic below is based on the 2012 census data and gives the number of people with science or engineering degrees and related disciplines in each state per every 1000 residents (code is available here, on my GitHub page). The states with darker shades have more engineers, adjusted by population, than the lighter ones.
I have a hunch that these rankings probably track pretty closely to the total number of college graduates in each state. It would be interesting to compare these results to the number of STEM graduates adjusted by the total number of residents with bachelor degrees. Just eyeballing it, it looks like for the most part the rankings seem to align relatively well with the GDP per capita in each state. Same story with the Gross State Product, although some of the states with low population density (Wyoming, for example) have relatively high GDP per capita but low total economic output. There are also some striking similarities to the 2012 election results. States with lots of engineers love Obama I guess.
For the numerically minded, here is the complete list:
|Rank||State||Degrees per 1000 citizens
|1||District of Columbia||185.0796006|