Prospective college students, current scholars, and recent graduates should pay attention to the Bureau of Labor (BLS) statistics, because it provides an extremely useful wealth of information regarding job outlooks, pay, and minimum education requirements. This federal resource is provided by the United States Department of Labor, which uses national statistics to help citizens learn more about different career options. The Occupational Outlook Handbook provides career profiles on work environments, job descriptions, median pay, experience required, and the job outlook before the year 2022. Many of these jobs require that graduates hold a master’s or doctoral degree before they start, however a few of these careers can be entered with just an undergraduate degree. Here are the top 10 highest-paying jobs according to the BLS, along with points of interest for recent high school graduates.
Not sure if you want to continue on and receive your doctoral degree? These numbers might help you change your mind. The median pay for a physician is equal to or greater than $187,200 a year. And the path toward a physician role pays well too – interns working toward this occupation receive comparable compensation. Recently, Forbes profiled Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, the richest doctor in the world, who is actually using his $2.8 billion to fund children’s hospitals.
Want to earn an average of $90 or more an hour? Start working toward medical school and your residency program. Akrit Jaswal was featured on Oprah because he performed his first surgery at the age of 7. But unless you’re a prodigy, you’ll probably want to pursue a residency first.
3. Nurse anesthetists
By now, you’re probably noticing a trend of lucrative healthcare roles. Those who graduate with a master’s degree can explore the nurse anesthetist role, which has a median pay of $148,160 a year.
Unlike the first three career options here, psychiatrists deal primarily with mental health and treatments. Just like surgeons and physicians, they also make an average of $90 an hour. Graduates are required to hold a doctoral degree as well.
5. Chief Executives
CEOs are one of the few high-paying career paths accessible to graduates that hold a bachelor’s degree. These roles come with a significant amount of risk, especially for entrepreneurs working with startups and other young companies. One of the most noteworthy CEOs of all time is Steve Jobs, who never received a college degree and founded the multi-billion dollar company, Apple Inc.
We’re looking at medical fields again, but this time, it involves oral and dental health. Graduates who have completed dental school must pass a professional licensing exam in their state before practicing as a dentist. However, once you start, you can begin earning up to $149,310 a year.
7. Petroleum Engineers
Bachelor’s degree holders rejoice! Just like the CEO role, this is another high-paying career to explore if you’ve got an undergraduate degree in engineering. These professionals can make an average of $130,280 a year.
8. Air Traffic Controllers
Graduates with two-year degrees, you might be surprised to learn that you can make an average of $58.91 an hour directing flight traffic. That’s right, an associate’s degree can get you one of the highest paid positions in the U.S. However, you must first pass extensive background and medical checks, along with a test issued by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
9. Computer and Information Systems Managers
Digital technologies drive countless industries, so it’s no surprise that these tech leaders make so much money. CIS managers earn an average of $120,950. Graduates who have their bachelor’s degree have some extremely exciting job prospects in this field, since this field is growing by 15% in the next few years.
10. Marketing Managers
Graduates with their bachelor’s degrees can explore this exciting career option with an average annual pay of $115,750.
Featured photo credit: bsfag via flickr.com