The highest paying jobs always belong mostly to medical professionals, legal representatives, and science and technology professionals and specialists. These are core professions, that tend to not fluctuate with the economy or dot com bubble (remember!). So for students entering the work force, it is a good idea to at least see what professions will offer good pay. Then extrapolate from there as to whether that is a viable career for you and your interests. Remember, a career in not just job, and a job is not a career. But a good career, that is tolerable, pleasant and meaningful can fund interests that are less lucrative. For example, it’s difficult to be a photographer and work consistently sometimes, but a doctor who is a serious photographer has sufficient means to take any courses they want, purchase any equipment they want, and generally do the passion at a very high level. Just something to consider.
Here, for example, are the top, or highest paying jobs (based on median statistics):
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $145,600 YEARLY
Obstetricians and Gynecologists
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $140,350 YEARLY
Chief Executive Officers
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $137,090 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $135,730 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $129,250 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $123,060 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $102, 030 YEARLY
Air Traffic Controllers
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $97,630 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $97,320 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $94,930 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $94,400 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $93,070 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $92,570 YEARLY
Computer Systems Managers
Information Systems Managers
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $88,660 YEARLY
Natural Sciences Managers
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $88,500 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $88,410 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $87,640 YEARLY
MEDIAN GREATER THAN $87,450 YEARLY
But considering that not all of us want to be or have the gifts to become lawyers or doctors, what about the next highest paying jobs—those that are creative, adventurous, or even dangerous in nature?
For example, firefighters, miners, underwater steel workers, and truck drivers have the highest risk jobs, so why don’t they have the highest paying jobs?
Those folks we cannot pay enough. I am of the opinion that firefighters are grossly underpaid, and that that is bad, but if you ask any of them, their passion outweighs the pay. I admire that.
So lots of issues to consider, but not just pay. In this economy pay is critical, as is security. But don’t just err on pay or security.
And by all means use college to sample things you never tried before.
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