The recession in America has changed the landscape of the overall marketplace, and unnervingly redefined the meaning of job security for a striking number of workers stretched across a wide spectrum of disciplines. It raises questions about which careers—going forward—have been highlighted as high growth and in demand, for recent graduates entering the job market and those in the midst of their professional careers.
High Growth Careers by Industry
According to U.S. News and World Report, the most in demand occupations fall into a wide range of categories: science, technology, healthcare, business, finance, education, civic, creative and service jobs. The high growth careers within these disciplines are just as wide ranging, which is great news for job hunters. While some of these positions may require an entire reeducation, there are many with on-the-job training. The jobs with the highest demand and growth potential are within the science, technology, healthcare and education fields.
Careers in Science and Technology
Within the economy’s science and technology sectors are the jobs with the most growth potential in the current marketplace, as our society becomes more and more dependent on the latest technologies. Biomedical Engineers—the people who use their engineering skills to help us live longer (coming up with medical devices from pacemakers to corrective lenses)—see their career at the top of this list and it’s projected to stay there for several years. The median income for a Biomedical Engineer can range from about $48,000 to $122,000 per year.
Other jobs in these sectors include computer software engineer, systems analyst, computer programmer, statistician, environmental science technician, civil engineer, and even meteorologist.
Careers in Healthcare
Not only has there been growth in the healthcare industry, it will continue to expand and is not projected to change its trajectory. Within this field there is also growth in occupations that require less education than traditional healthcare positions, thereby stretching these opportunities to more workers. Registered Nurses—who did not see job cuts through the recession and are on track to add many thousands more to their ranks in the next several years—can earn anywhere between $43,400 and $92,900 per year. This is a career that has many options for future advancement through continuing education.
Other high growth careers in this sector include optometrist, occupational therapist, veterinarian, x-ray technician and a host of jobs requiring less education such as lab technician, physician assistant, dental assistant, massage therapist and physical therapist assistant.
Careers in Education and Civil Careers
Of all the high demand occupations in the field of education, one stands out above the rest: special education teacher. These are the teachers who make sure that children with learning disabilities are able to learn. This teaching job can earn anywhere between $33,800 and $82,000 per year, depending on education, experience and grade level taught. In the next several years, a 20 percent increase in demand for special education teachers is expected.
Educators are known for giving back to the community, and here are a host of high demand jobs that are also known for giving back: firefighter, clergy, librarian, court reporter, bailiff, social worker, urban planner, and marriage and family therapist.
Other High Demand Jobs
Other careers that are in high demand and expected to flourish in the next several years run the gamut, from bartender to chef and actuary to market research analyst. Plumbers are expected to increase their ranks, as are technical writers, funeral directors and judges.