The 8 Fastest Growing Jobs in America

8 fastest growing jobs in america

In a tough job market, it pays to be strategic – and look for growth opportunities. “One key to finding employment in a poor economy is to target positions that have suffered significant cutbacks in recent years and are now poised to recover to previous or even higher levels,” said Tony Lee, publisher of job-search site


Projected hiring growth: 25%
Income growth potential: 452%
Salary range: $31,000 to $171,000

After being cast in the role of villain during the financial crisis, Wall Street is making a comeback – and we’re not just talking about Gordon Gekko!

The annual salary for a stockbroker starts around $31,000 and can rocket to $171,000 or more for top performers, according to

There are no specific educational requirements to be a stockbroker – you can be a high-school dropout or a Harvard M.B.A. Everything you need to know, you’ll learn on the job. But, you gotta have a strong stomach. If you can’t run with the big dogs, you’re going to have to get back on the porch!

Advertising Salesperson

Projected hiring growth: 20%
Income growth potential: 309%
Salary range: $23,000 to $94,000

As companies shift from survival mode to growth mode, they’re going to be looking to hire people to help them achieve that growth. And for many companies, that starts with advertising sales.

The annual salary for an advertising salesperson starts around $23,000 but can grow to $94,000 or more, according to CareerCast.

And, like their Wall Street counterparts, ad sales people aren’t required to have specific educational requirements. But if you want to max out that earnings potential, you’re going to have to know how to sell a man the shirt off his back!


Projected hiring growth: 23%
Income growth potential: 279%
Salary range: $29,000 to $148,000

With all the worries about the environment and the rise of the biotech industry, demand for biological research and development is expected to outpace average employment growth.

The average starting salary for a biologist is $39,000, but that can balloon to $148,000 or more, according to CareerCast.

Of course, biological research isn’t for everyone: You know pretty early on if you’re the pig-dissecting type or not. Plus, a PhD is usually required for most independent-research jobs. However, there are a few jobs – like applied research or product development – where a bachelor’s degree will suffice.

On the upside, most positions are typical 40-hour workweeks. And if people drive you crazy, this job offers plenty of time alone in a lab with specimens that don’t talk back!


Projected hiring growth: 22%
Income growth potential: 269%
Salary range: $42,000 to $155,000

Another field that’s expected to benefit from concerns about the environment is geologists – everything from petroleum geologists, who study ocean or land terrain for oil and gas deposits to engineering geologists, who are used for everything from land development and construction to environmental remediation.

The typical starting salary is around $42,000 but can triple to $155,000 or more, according to CareerCast.

It’s great for the cubicle-averse – much of your time is spent in the field, though you’re still going to need to be able to use a computer as many jobs still involve computer modeling and data analysis.

A bachelor’s degree will suffice for some positions, though many require a masters’ degree.

Stenographer/Court Reporter

Projected hiring growth: 25%
Income growth potential: 236%
Salary range: $25,000 to $84,000

This one’s a simple case of math: The legal system continues to grow and fewer people are choosing to pursue careers as court reporters.

Court reporters and stenographers typically start around $25,000 a year but can make $84,000 or more, according to

Most positions require 1 to 2 years of training. Training for electronic court reporters is typically done on the job.

Of course, the most important requirements are that you’re quick and accurate, good under pressure, with outstanding listening skills and concentration. You also have to be a good speller and, let’s be honest –a good sitter, as you’ll be sitting in court for long periods of time. Also, if being in the same room as criminals scares you, maybe this isn’t for you. Try eight hours straight of Law & Order and see how you feel.


Projected hiring growth: 24%
Income growth potential: 229%
Salary range: $49,000 to $161,000

Math nerds, rejoice – your skills are in demand!

The employment prospects for actuaries are above average as other companies besides insurance such as financial services and consulting increasingly need mathy types to help them assess the risk of certain events occurring – and craft policies accordingly.

The starting salary for an actuary is around $49,000 and can triple to $161,000 or more, according to

You typically need a bachelor’s degree to be an actuary, and to pass a series of certification exams.

The best opportunities are expected to be in consulting.

Market-Research Analyst

Projected hiring growth: 20%
Income growth potential: 229%
Salary range: $34,000 to $112,000

Companies are increasingly trying to understand what their customers are thinking and what they want – and they’re going to need more people to help figure it all out.

The average starting salary for a market-research analyst is $34,000, but you can make $112,000 or more, according to

You can get your start with a bachelor’s degree but you’ll find better opportunities with a master’s degree.

This one’s good for those hybrid personality types – you need to have good people skills for conducting surveys (unless they’re web-based) but also strong quantitative skills and ability to hole up alone for long periods of time when you’re analyzing data and composing your reports.


Projected hiring growth: 23%
Income growth potential: 226%
Salary range: $34,000 to $111,000

Who knows if it’s the rise of the Internet, the low starting pay or the fact that historian skills are easily transferable to other professions but there are fewer young people embarking on the historian track these days – and that means better job prospects for future historians.

Historians typically start around $34,000 but can make $111,000 or more, according to

Most are employed by government – be it at the federal, state or local level – and most specialize in a particular area, country or region.

Of course you need a love of history, reading and critical thinking but you also need a flair for the dramatic — for presentations, papers or that side gig writing books.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…

Read the whole article at: America’s Fastest Growing Jobs in 2010, at


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