As you enter your final year of school before graduation, whether it’s at the high school, university or post-graduate level, you will inevitably have to make the choice of what you want to pursue as a possible career. If you’re one of the lucky ones who have always known what they want to do, I’m jealous. However, if you are still not sure you’ve found your true passion or calling, well maybe you’ll find some comfort in the fact that you’re in the majority.
One of the challenges when trying to determine what career to pursue is understanding what one actually does in a certain profession. New careers and specialties are also always being invented, so with what can seem like endless possibilities, the thought of making a choice can be daunting.
While I’m not a big fan of “Top 10” lists or rankings, one useful trait of these publications is that they give you a consolidated source of information to kick-start your research. The U.S. News & World Report has recently been publishing a list of Best Careers which it updates each year. They say they score hundreds of careers based on the following 5 criteria:
- 1. Job outlook, which took into consideration the above three factors
- 2. Average job satisfaction
- 3. Difficulty of the required training
- 4. Prestige
- 5. Pay
While I wouldn’t put too much weight on what they consider “hot or not”, the 1 page profile they include on each career mentioned is a great source of information. They also take some time to profile up-and-coming, as well as best-kept-secret careers such as: Creative Perfumer, Simulation Developer & Orthoptist
One other great resource I highly recommend, and is mentioned in the article, is the Occupational Outlook Handbook, which profiles more than 250+ occupations, including a description of the nature of the work, listing of training / education requirements, and a job outlook analysis with data projections.
In terms of Best Careers in 2009? A few that made this list include:
Some notable omissions from the 2009 list: Investment Banker, Dentist and Editor.
Note: Some of the analysis is very U.S.-centric. Click here for the original article.
Any careers you think are missing or haven’t gotten a fair shot? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below.