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Minimum Wage Background

  • The federal minimum wage rate is currently $7.25 an hour. Many states peg their wage minimums to the federal level. While several states set no minimums beyond that established by federal law, many states enact higher minimum wages than that established by the federal government.
    To view the complete list of state minimum wage rates on the U.S. Department of Labor Web site, visit:
  • All Virginia public colleges and universities offer a minimum hiring rate at or above the $7.25 minimum wage set by Virginia state law, which mirrors the federal minimum wage. The University of Virginia currently offers a minimum hiring rate of $11.76 an hour, which is the second-highest in the state among public universities. Only George Mason University, which has three campuses in Northern Virginia — Fairfax, Arlington and Manassas, offers a higher starting hourly wage at $12.20 an hour.
George Mason U. $12.44
U.Va. 11.76
U. of Mary Washington 10.13
William & Mary 10.00
Old Dominion U. 9.19
James Madison U. 9.25
Virginia Commonwealth U. 8.25
Virginia Tech 9.25
Virginia Military Institute 8.50
Norfolk State U. 7.54
Radford U. 9.00
U.Va. College at Wise 8.25
Longwood University 7.54
Virginia State University 7.54

Government Minimum Wage Rates

Federal 7.25
Virginia 7.25

Mid-Atlantic States

Washington, D.C. $8.25
Delaware 7.25
Pennsylvania 7.25
Maryland 7.25
West Virginia 7.25
North Carolina 7.25

Other States

Washington $9.19
Oregon 8.95
Connecticut 8.25
California 8.00
Massachusetts 8.00
Vermont 8.60
Alaska 7.75
New Jersey 7.25
New York 7.25
Arizona 7.80
Illinois 8.25
Oklahoma 7.25**
Kansas 7.25

States with No State Minimum Wage

South Carolina

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Labor, as of January1, 2013, for state and federal information (; Virginia public university statistics from U.Va. Department of Human Resources.

** Oklahoma's $7.25 minimum hourly wage rate applies to employers with 10 or more employees or with gross sales of $100,000 or more; otherwise, it's $2.00.

—May 2015