Living and working in Irvine, California

Irvine is one of the well-known cities in California’s Orange County. Incorporated only in 1971, Irvine started out as a planned city that was developed by the Irvine Company. From a population of only 10,000 people during that time, today there are 250,384 residents in Irvine. The ethnicities you’ll find in Irvine are quite diverse, with 45.7% of the population White, 38.2% Asian, and 9.8% Hispanic.

Since Irvine is a planned city, its layout was masterfully designed. William Pereira, a Los Angeles architect, together with Raymond Watson, an employee of Irvine Company, divided Irvine into villages and separated these townships by six-lane streets. Each village was planned to have a distinct architectural design, and even the streets have allowances for landscaping. Irvine is unlike any other city you’ve been to, and this is why many companies have set up shop there.


When you visit Irvine, you won’t run out of things to do. It’s the destination of choice for many events and meetings, but it’s also a place where people go for vacation. In fact, even if Irvine is one of the most business-friendly cities you can find, it’s also a kid-friendly destination that’s ideal for families. From open-air ice skating and bowling alleys to carousels and playgrounds, there are many things to do. You can also visit the skate park, do speed go-kart racing, and explore the parks.

Since Irvine is located in Orange County, you also get access to Southern California’s beautiful beaches. Irvine is perfect for those who want a taste of California’s sunny weather, because you’ll find this in abundance here. Aside from that, Irvine enjoys a close proximity to amusement parks so in terms of entertainment options, you really have a lot going for you. In fact, you can easily access Disneyland from Irvine, as you only have to drive about 20 minutes to get there.

For those who are into the arts and culture scene, Irvine is home to a vibrant and growing community of artists, dancers, theater actors, and performers, whose talents can be seen in many galleries, plays, festivals, musical productions, and such events that happen all year round. Irvine Fine Arts Center also offers many single-session classes for visitors, ranging from ceramics to cooking. You can also visit the Segerstrom Center for the Arts.

One more thing you can do in Irvine is shopping. Irvine Spectrum Center offers more than 100 shops and boutiques, all lined up in outdoor walkways which makes shopping a wonderful experience for you. This is also where you’ll find Fashion Island, which is another shopping destination.

Lastly, the international community that you’ll find in Irvine is also a guarantee that your culinary adventures in this city will never be boring. From Korean food and Japanese delights to flavors from Chile, India, and China, there will be many restaurants to satisfy your appetite. By exploring Irvine in just 40 square miles of space, you can say you’ve dined everywhere in the world.


Irvine is the home base of many institutions of higher education. This includes the prestigious 50-year-old University of California Irvine (UCI), which has produced three Nobel laureates and is the youngest university in the Association of American Universities. Other notable educational institutions in Irvine include the Orange County Center of the University of Southern California, Concordia University, California Southern University, Brandman University and Irvine Valley College. In Irvine, you will also find the campuses of several universities: Pepperdine University, California State University Fullerton, Alliant International University, and Webster University, among others. The educational opportunities in Irvine are almost limitless.

Notable companies

About 23,341 businesses have a license to operate in Irvine, and that means it’s home to more than 200,000 jobs and growing. The economy of Irvine depends on the following industries:

  • Education. With over 190 degrees available to 30,000 students, University of California Irvine (UCI) is the second biggest employer in the entire Orange County. UCI has about 16,000 employees and contributes a total of $4.8 billion to the local economy. Aside from UCI, the Irvine Unified School District also employs about 2,473 people, and this along with the sheer number of universities, colleges, and other learning institutions in Irvine only solidifies the fact that education is really a big industry in this city.
  • Technology. Technology is another important Irvine industry, and there is a growing number of tech companies that have set up their headquarters in Irvine. From technology innovators and gaming to global leaders in wireless communications, the tech companies in Irvine are so varied, there’s a lot of opportunities for growth. Some examples of these tech employers include Verizon Wireless, Parker Hannifin, Broadcom, Blizzard Entertainment, Quicksilver Software, Epicor Software, Western Digital, and many others.
  • Medical. This field is still related to technology but focuses more on the medical and pharmaceutical aspect of it. Edwards Life Sciences for instance has over 2,500 employees, and is the global leader in thermodynamic monitoring and heart valves. B. Braun Medical and Allergan are some other companies in this industry that have really made a name in Irvine.

Economic – Why You’d Want a JOB Here

When it comes to choosing where you want to find a job and build a sustainable career, Irvine is a great choice that is really worth considering. For one, it’s a planned city so you’ll find a lot of order in the way that everything is laid out. Many international corporations have seen this, and this is why you’ll find many of them in Irvine. This has spurred economic development through the years, so if you move here for a job you will really find fulfillment and a solid footing.

Get bright ideas from the movers and shakers in Los Angeles and beyond at Forward Idea. (FI iscurated by Schmoozd)

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