Womenz Magazine

10 of the Best Jobs for the Future

Women Jobs in USA

Even as many Americans struggle to find work, certain fields are booming — and will continue to boom well into the future. You could boost your odds of career success by targeting one of these expanding job fields.

Future Jobs

We took a deep dive into employment projections from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics to identify fields that promise to add the greatest number of positions at the fastest rates through 2020. We also looked for occupations that pay top dollar and have been increasing wages of late. Salary ranges reflect annual paychecks from the 25th to the 75th percentiles, which weeds out the lowest and highest earners.

Finally, we took into account the level of education typically required to land a job. While higher degrees can lead to higher salaries, some fields offer good pay and plenty of openings to those with less schooling. Take a look at 10 hot jobs of tomorrow.

1. Registered Nurse

  • Total number of U.S. workers (most recent data): 2,737,400
  • 10-year growth projection: 26.0% (all occupations: 14.3%)
  • Annual salary range: $53,770 to $80,390 (all occupations: $22,380-$55,470)
  • Typical education: associate’s degree

The outlook for RNs is healthy. The field is expected to add more than 711,000 positions in this decade, the most of any occupation. Advancing technology, greater focus on preventive care and an aging population will mean a growing number of patients requiring care — in hospitals, doctors’ offices, long-term-care facilities and even private homes.

Becoming a registered nurse requires a bachelor’s of science in nursing (generally a four-year program), an associate’s degree in nursing (two to three years) or a diploma from an accredited nursing program (two to three years). An advanced nursing position, such as a nurse practitioner, calls for a master’s degree. You’ll also need a license to practice, not to mention reserves of compassion and patience.

2. Systems Software Developer

  • Total number of U.S. workers: 392,300
  • 10-year growth projection: 32.4%
  • Annual salary range: $77,720 to $120,500
  • Typical education: bachelor’s degree

This is a nerd’s world, and we’re all benefiting from it. With the computerization of everything from cell phones to cars to coffee makers, the development of new systems software has become an essential part of our lives. Demand for more sophisticated cyber security and digital health records should also provide new jobs for techies. Then there is rising demand for applications software developers, who create everything from word-processing programs to apps for tablets and smart phones.

A college degree in computer science or software engineering is the entry point for most software-development jobs. Employers may even look for someone with a master’s degree to fill certain positions. Either way, you must have a strong background in programming and be able to keep up with changes in the field, such as the introduction of new tools and computer languages. Systems software developers enjoy the highest pay of anyone on our list and have a shot at a six-figure salary.

3. Plumber

  • Total number of U.S. workers: 419,900
  • 10-year growth projection: 25.6%
  • Annual salary range: $36,050 to $64,790
  • Typical education: high school diploma or equivalent

Demand for plumbing services is expected to grow with new building construction and the need to increase water efficiency by installing low-flow faucets and toilets. Even in less-prosperous economic times, plumbing maintenance and repairs remain a necessity — adding more job security to the occupation.

Most plumbers get started with a paid four- or five-year apprenticeship, which usually requires you to be at least 18 years old and drug-free, to have a high school diploma or the equivalent, and to possess basic math and computer skills. Find registered apprenticeships in your area through the U.S. Department of Labor. You might also need to be licensed, depending on your state’s requirements.

4. Construction Equipment Operator

  • Total number of U.S. workers: 349,100
  • 10-year growth projection: 23.5%
  • Annual salary range: $32,550 to $56,040
  • Typical education: high school diploma or equivalent

The nation’s crumbling infrastructure is building up demand for construction workers. And equipment operators, who run everything from bulldozers to piledrivers, are expected to be in greater demand than supervisors while pulling in higher pay than laborers and helpers. The gritty duties can usually be learned on the job, but you might also seek out apprenticeships or private trade school programs.

Note: The sequestration could put a bump in the road for this career path. Budget cuts this fiscal year include about $2 billion from the Department of Transportation and $503 million specifically from national infrastructure investments. But Congress may act to ease these automatic spending reductions.

5. Electrician

  • Total number of U.S. workers: 577,000
  • 10-year growth projection: 23.2%
  • Annual salary range: $37,570 to $65,260
  • Typical education: high school diploma or equivalent

Demand for increased connectivity at home and at the office means more work for electricians. So does the growing use of alternative energy, including solar and wind power. Housing renovation and new construction will also drive growth.

Most electricians get started with a paid four-year apprenticeship. Entering one of these programs usually requires that you be at least 18 years old, and have a high school diploma or the equivalent, one year of algebra, a qualifying aptitude score and drug-free clearance. You can find registered apprenticeships in your area through the U.S. Department of Labor. Most states also require you to be licensed.

6. Personal Financial Advisor

  • Total number of U.S. workers: 206,800
  • 10-year growth projection: 32.1%
  • Annual salary range: $43,160 to $111,880
  • Typical education: bachelor’s degree

More money problems, more money help needed. As Americans age and pensions become a thing of the past, good investment advice will only grow in value. Baby-boomers, especially, could increasingly need professional help as they plan for and enter retirement. Financial expertise can lead to big bucks for you as well as your clients: Personal financial advisors are one of only two professions on this list whose wage range reaches six digits.

You usually have to be a college grad to get on this career path. A bachelor’s degree in finance, economics, accounting or a similar field would best prepare you for dealing with money matters, but most employers don’t specify a required major. Certification from the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards — which requires a bachelor’s degree, at least three years of relevant work experience and passing

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