Apparently, Cupid didn’t get the memo that business and pleasure don’t mix.
According to this interactive chart from Bloomberg Business, which draws on data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2014 American Community Survey, people are likely to marry within their field in a handful of professions. Grade school teachers lead the pack, followed by actors, veterinarians, sewing machine operators and air traffic controllers. That last one is perplexing, unless you’re familiar with the sexy airport-based 90s sitcom “Wings.”
The chart (caution: it's highly addictive) breaks the teacher-hot-for-teacher thing down even further. Among women who marry other women, for instance, the most common matchup is between an education administrator and a teacher. The Bloomberg chart aligns with a 2015 study, which found that 16 percent of people in education marry someone else from the profession.
Yes, there’s obvious practicality to teachers marrying other teachers, and yes, the smell of dry-erase markers may be an aphrodisiac. But we wanted to know precisely what brings educators together, so we talked to Sean Telles and Lorianne Salazar, who met at Columbia University Teacher’s College and married in 2013. Telles and Salazar are now based Oahu, Hawaii, where they teach 8th grade special education and kindergarten-2nd grade special education, respectively.
On how they ended up teaching:
Salazar: We had met doing education related things, but not necessarily teaching at the time. He [Sean] was working on Sesame Street and National Geographic Kids and that kind of thing. I was working at the U.N. on policy-related things. I think both of us were at this point in both of those type of dream jobs where we wanted to get more into working directly with kids.
On how it affects their relationship:
Telles: “First of all, it’s our passion, and we see victories in what we’re doing for each other. So it’s not like, ‘Oh, how are you staying so late, I really need you here with me?’ It’s like no, I’m really impressed with how much you’re giving to that student. I think we say it all the time to each other, ‘Those kids are so lucky to have you.’”
Salazar: “Sean works with mostly military students, and I work with the native Hawaiian population a lot. We both have these different work lives. At the same time, at the end of the day, we’re still talking about many of the same issues, and it’s nice to come home and know that Sean is going through the same thing or understands what I’m going through.”
Trends in "intermarriage"
Teaching is facinating because it's an anomaly: there’s typically earning parity among genders, unlike many of those who marry outside their profession.
For "intermarried" couples in different fields, the chart shows some surprisingly retrograde trends. For instance, high-earning women in law and medicine tend to marry their economic equals, while low and middle-income earning women tend to “marry up" with higher earners.
Question: If male CEOs marry their secretaries, then why do female CEOs marry other CEOs? Where are the female CEOs married to their male administrative assistants? And why are so many male truck drivers married to sewing machine operators — and not the other way around? It’s no shocker that remakes of Jane Austen novels like "Clueless" and "Bridget Jones' Diary," modernizing the "Sense and Sensibility" style marriage plot, have been popular of late: based on the data, even in 2016 nuptials still have economic underpinnings.
The data aslo has practical applications for those looking to go about dating more systematically. For instance, male tech gurus and male fitness/recreations instructors are a common marriage match. If you’re a guy in software development who dates other guys, then you should be hitting up the gym.
Who knows? Maybe swiping right is over. Dare we say it’s time to use data to drive your dating strategy, and get your love chart in formation?