Best Jobs For The Future

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Table Of Contents

The job market undoubtedly is going to change in the future. If you’re looking for a career, or anticipate joining the ranks of the employed sometime soon, you’d be wise to think ahead and explore which jobs will be absolutely booming and high paying in the coming years. Quite a few have a very bright outlook in terms of both healthy growth and salary. We’ve done some extensive research and determined the top ten upward trending occupations you might want to consider for the future.

Some of these jobs will require advanced education, which brings the assurance of higher pay. But there also are some jobs you can pretty much start tomorrow, with little or no overhead costs. You’ll find there are occupations for those who want to go to college, those who are already in the workforce and looking for a change, and those who want to start working right out of high school. Regardless of the category, what these jobs have in common is that they all will be growing in the next five to ten years. Pick one and it’s safe to say that your employment future will be looking bright!

To find a new job opportunity, check out the best free job posting sites.

Check out the chart below for a list of the ten fastest-growing occupations. Then read what we’ve learned about each to help determine if one of these jobs is right for you.

10 Fastest Growing Occupations Projected 2018-28



Solar Photovoltaic Installer

Even the title of this position sounds futuristic. So what, exactly, is a solar photovoltaic installer? Also known as PV installers, these individuals assemble, install, or maintain solar systems on roofs or other structures in compliance with site assessments and schematics. They usually work with a team to assemble and install the components of a photovoltaic solar array, that is, the materials that convert sunlight to electricity. Depending on the job and state laws, PV installers also may perform minor electrical work such as current checks, or connect solar panels to an electric grid, although this task is sometimes relegated to electricians.

Schooling or Training Needed

Most employers require PV installers to have a high school diploma. Some take courses at local community colleges or trade schools to learn about solar panel installation, with instruction that ranges from basic safety and PV knowledge to system design. Course lengths vary by state and locality, although they typically last a few days to several months. Other PV installers learn their trade on the job while working with experienced installers. This type of training usually lasts one month to one year and encompasses safety, tools, and PV system installation techniques.

This field is growing much faster than average, with a projected change in employment of between 63.3 percent, and as much as 105 percent, by 2028. (The average growth rate for all occupations is seven percent).

Wind Turbine Service Technician

If you have a fear of heights or small spaces, this probably isn’t your ideal occupation. But if the thought of hovering hundreds of feet in the air each day sounds appealing, then you just might be the perfect candidate for a job as a wind turbine service technician. Keep reading because the job growth outlook for this occupation is way above average at nearly 57 percent. Wind turbine service technicians are the people who install, inspect, maintain, operate, and repair wind turbines. Also known as windtechs, they diagnose and fix any problem that might cause a turbine to shut down unexpectedly. Typical duties include: inspecting the exterior of towers; climbing the towers to inspect, troubleshoot, and repair equipment; collecting turbine data for testing and analysis; performing routine maintenance; testing electrical components, systems, and mechanical and hydraulic systems; and replacing worn out or malfunctioning components.

Windtechs do most of their work in a compact space of the turbine called a nacelle; it’s where sensitive electronics are housed. And yes, it is very confined, so keep in mind what we said above about working in small spaces. But the techs often work on top of the nacelles, too, which literally places them hundreds of feet in the air. Of course, full-body harnesses are worn as fall protection.

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Schooling or Training Needed

Most wind turbine service technicians learn their trade at technical schools and community colleges where Associate Degree programs take about two years. Besides coursework, more than 12 months of on-the-job training also is required, part of which can be completed through an internship with a wind turbine servicing contractor.

Apprenticeships are another option offered by both unions and individual contractors. According to the Department of Labor apprenticeship program standards, workers need to have at least 144 hours of related technical instruction and 2,200 hours of paid on-the-job training for each year of the program. Apprenticeships typically help trainees hone their skills in safety, first aid, administering CPR, and electrical, hydraulic, and mechanical system maintenance, among others. To enter an apprenticeship program, trainees must be at least 18 years old, have earned a high school diploma, be physically and mentally able, and have one year of high school (or equivalent) algebra with at least a C average.

Home Health Aide and Personal Care Aide

As baby boomers are starting to ease into retirement, the need for health aides will continue to rise. The main difference between a Home Health Aide (HHA) and a Personal Care Aide (PCA), is that HHAs usually have some kind of post-secondary education and have to pass a state certification exam. Whereas PCAs don’t need any such training. The difference, then, in hiring one of the two is that an HHA is better equipped to deal with medical issues like taking blood pressure, dealing with braces, dressing, or toileting. Personal care aides are meant to care for someone who can’t live independently but doesn’t need medical attention, providing help with things like dressing, grooming, laundry, and shopping.

Schooling or Training Needed

Although the pay is not much different, and meager at best, there is a loophole to becoming a home health aide without any education. Aides who work for organizations that receive funds from Medicare or Medicaid must complete formal training, while those who work for private companies do not have to meet these requirements.

In order to participate in the training, which lasts about a semester, one needs to complete a physical examination, including state-mandated blood tests, and a background check in order to enroll. They also need to become certified in CPR. Finally, they need to complete 75 hours of training and pass a written examination; additional requirements may need to be met depending on the state.

There is really no barrier to becoming a personal care aide although some employers may require a high school diploma and or training in CPR. Personal care aides do things like go on walks, play games, assist in hygiene-related tasks, and perform routine household chores like meal preparation, cleaning, changing the bed, and vacuuming.

Occupational Therapy Assistant

If helping people feel better is your calling, then you could be a great occupational therapy assistant (OTA). OTAs support occupational therapists (OT) in treating patients who have difficulty performing daily living and work activities because of illness, injury, or a disability. We should note here that the key to this relationship is the word “support.” Even though OTs are the ones who evaluate their clients’ conditions and develop treatment plans, OTAs are the pros who carry out those plans - with a pretty high degree of latitude to get creative and utilize techniques that are most effective with each individual.

Join The Break Community

Occupational therapy assistants work in a variety of settings that include, but are not limited to, hospitals, rehab centers, schools, nursing homes, and retirement communities. Because the field serves so many needs and has such a huge demand for services, it is one of the fastest-growing areas in healthcare. That makes being an OTA one of the best healthcare support jobs you can find. The employment outlook is great and projected to grow much faster than the average, between 31 and 41 percent.

The field of occupational therapy encompasses a wide range of practice areas. Some OTAs choose to work with children, helping them with typical childhood activities like learning, playing, and successfully growing. Others work with students who might have learning disabilities, behavioral problems, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, or other disabilities. Still, others work with adults, helping them to deal with and recover from traumatic injuries, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, or mental health problems so they can relearn activities of daily living or that are required in their occupation.

If you want to become an occupational therapist, you may need to update your resume. Check out our guide creating an occupational therapist resume.

Schooling or Training Needed

Typically an associate's degree from an accredited program is required to become an occupational therapy assistant.

Information Security Analyst

It is safe to say that cybersecurity isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, especially as people are becoming more comfortable entering their valuable information online. Companies like Apple are even using their secure platforms as a way of advertising, deeming themselves the safest of safe companies around, and giving their customers a sense of warmth and comfort. So how does one break into the realm of cybersecurity and become an Information Security Analyst (also known as a Data Security Analyst)?

Schooling or Training Needed

You’re generally required to hold a Bachelor’s Degree in computer science, software engineering, information assurance, or a related field. But it doesn’t stop there. Some companies prefer a Master's Degree (MBA)  in information systems. So once you have completed your Bachelor’s Degree, it might be a good idea to see where you stand in terms of the position you desire and make a decision on whether or not to continue on to the MBA. The training doesn’t stop at formal education through colleges. There are also additional certifications that can be earned ranging from general information systems security to systems auditing.

Once you’ve obtained a position, you will be working to preserve the security and integrity or an organization's data. You’ll need to learn everything about information security within the company and work to correct any gaping flaws it may have. You’ll also be charged with constantly improving the company’s security by utilizing the latest technologies available. This, of course, is a mere tidbit of the scope of what you will be dealing with as your day to day activities will surely vary based on the company you are working for.

Physician Assistant

The first class of Physician Assistants (PA) graduated from Duke University in 1967. Eugene A. Stead Jr., MD, of the Duke University Medical Center, recognized there was a shortage of primary care physicians, and thus put together his first class of PAs in 1965. Fast forward to today where, as of this writing, there are north of 130,000 PAs in the United States, a number that continues to grow. Getting into med school is notoriously hard, and while PA school is difficult in its own right, it might be the right path for you if medicine is of interest.

Schooling or Training Needed

In order to become a PA you need to first complete your undergraduate degree and take the necessary science prerequisites. Many PA schools require that you have prior healthcare experience which you can obtain by working as a medical assistant, paramedic, or something similar. From there you will need to take the GRE and apply to a PA school. After you graduate PA school you will need to pass the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination, or PANCE.

The difference between a PA and a physician is that the PA operates under the doctor’s supervision, whereas the doctor operates autonomously. Also, PAs cannot perform surgery. Other than that, they can obtain patient histories, perform physical examinations, diagnose illness and develop treatment strategies, order and interpret lab tests, counsel patients on preventative health, perform various medical procedures, assist in surgical operations, and, in most states, write prescriptions.

It is worth noting that the PA is the highest-paid position of the fastest-growing jobs in the United States on this list.

If you want to become a PA, you may begin by updating your resume. Check out our resource to learn how to create a physician assistant resume.


Statisticians are not only good with math, but with analytical and problem-solving skills as well. They typically hold Master’s Degrees in statistics, mathematics, or survey methodology and begin with an undergraduate degree in either statistics or mathematics, as well. While most positions in stats require a Master’s Degree there are some that only require the Bachelor's Degree.

Schooling or Training Needed

There are accelerated formats for the Master’s Degree that take as little as nine months, but most students complete their degree in 12-18 months. Students in these programs are sometimes encouraged to take courses in other quantitative fields to prepare for careers in industries like engineering, computer science, or physical science.

Once they obtain a Masters Degree, statisticians have two options to further advance their career. They can obtain a Statistician Certification or they can earn a PhD. The certification is not required by any means, but it could help the statistician become more competitive. There is an entry-level accreditation called the GStat, or Graduate Statistician, followed by a PStat, or Professional Statistician. The PhD takes four to five years to complete and requires a final thesis or dissertation.

Nurse Practitioner

Like a Physician’s Assistant, a Nurse Practitioner (NP) is able to prescribe medications and make diagnoses. The difference is that NPs serve a specific population while PAs have a more general background. Becoming an NP is a great career prospect if you don’t have the chops to get into medical school, but still fancy a career in medicine.

Schooling or Training Needed

Your path to becoming an NP starts as an undergraduate where you’re going to want to earn a Bachelor of Science in nursing. Next you’re going to want to obtain a license as a registered nurse (RN), which requires you to pass the National Council For Licensure Examination (NCLEX). Once you’re an RN, you should pursue a specialization, and from there you need to apply to either a Master of Science in Nursing or Doctor of Nursing Practice. The Doctorate indicates more in-depth knowledge and is favored in both job placement and salary for NP jobs. After your degree and clinical work is complete you can obtain certification from a specialty nursing board by passing a standardized test. Finally, you need to obtain a state license and find employment.

For more information, check out our guide on how to become a nurse.

Speech Language Pathologist

Speech Language Pathologists (SLP) help people when they have speech disorders. This is a job that is often overlooked, but the pay is respectable and the outlook for growth is promising. In order to become an SLP you need to complete a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) followed by a graduate degree in speech language pathology. Next, you need to complete a post-graduate fellowship, take a national exam, and finally apply for state licensure. You can also obtain a professional certification that would punch up your resume for a better salary and career placement. This can be a rewarding career because you can work with people who are literally at every age. SLPs usually work in healthcare or academic settings.

Schooling or Training Needed

Over 300 colleges and universities offer undergraduate and graduate CSD programs in the United States. As an undergrad, you will take courses in science, math, humanities, and foreign language. A minimum 3.0 GPA, GRE score (where the weight is varied by the school), essay, and letters of recommendation are required for admission to a graduate school where you will receive your MS in speech language pathology. You will need about 48 credits, with both academic and clinical coursework required. The clinical practice varies by state but is generally in the neighborhood of 350 hours.

Once you have completed your MS, it is time for your post-graduate fellowship. Most states require 1,260 hours which lasts 36 weeks and you may need to apply for a temporary license through your state’s board of speech-language pathology and audiology. The Praxis Examination in Speech Language Pathology is the second to last hurdle in becoming an SLP. The exam is required for your certificate of clinical competence in speech language pathology, your state professional licensure, and state teaching credential. Most students take the exam during their post-graduate fellowship.

Your final step is to apply for state licensure as an SLP. This requires an application fee, transcripts, Praxis exam scores, and results from a criminal background check.

Projected Annual Rate of Change in Industry Employment 2018-28

Here is a graph that shows the projected annual rate change in industry employment. This article mainly focused on specific jobs, but it is also interesting and valuable to be aware of the changes in each industry.



Bottom Line

The above jobs are poised for impressive growth over the next decade. To put it in context, software developers, which you often hear about as a huge growth sector, are looking at a 21 percent projected growth. Whether you’re about to graduate from high school or are looking for a career change, one of the aforementioned careers is a safe bet to obtain and keep employment.

If you’re interested in switching career paths or getting a job in one of these fields, our team would recommend you start by updating your resume. Our friends at TopResume offer a free resume review to help make your life and job application process easy!