At one point or another, you may have thought about pursuing a certain career, but wondered if that field would be in demand in the long-run. This is a valid point to look at when exploring careers, and it's a point that shouldn't be glossed over.
So, if you're looking to enter a field with great job prospects, then we've got just the thing for you.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) put together a list of the fastest growing careers through 2028. These jobs span across multiple industries, and all require different levels of education and training.
If you want to switch careers, or still aren't sure which career you want to pursue, check out this list of fast-growing careers to keep tabs on in 2020.
10. Physical Therapist Assistant
Physical therapist assistants help physical therapists with their daily workload. They help patients with conditions that limit their ability to perform daily tasks and work in places like hospitals, nursing homes, and sports facilities.
Career Growth: The BLS reports that the need for physical therapist assistants will grow 27% by 2028, which is a faster-than-average rate. This occupation will grow because healthcare needs will grow as the U.S. population ages.
Pay: The average annual salary for a physical therapist assistant is estimated to be $48,090.
Education Requirements: Those who want to be a physical therapist assistant must earn an associate's degree from an accredited program. Also, all states require physical therapist assistants to be licensed or certified.
9. Speech-Language Pathologist
Speech-language pathologists are responsible for diagnosing and treating communication and swallowing disorders in both kids and adults.
Career Growth: The need for speech-language pathologists is expected to grow 27% by 2028. The BLS says this will happen because as the baby boomer generation grows older, they may develop health conditions that can cause speech or language disorders, like strokes or dementia.
Pay: Recent data from the BLS says the median pay for speech-language pathologists is $77,510 per year.
Education Requirements: Typically, those looking to become a speech-language pathologist need to earn a master's degree. In the U.S., most states also require speech-language pathologists to get licensed. These licensing requirements vary from state to state.
8. Nurse Practitioner
Nurse practitioners spend their days doing a variety of tasks. This could include coordinating patient care, or seeing patients as a primary or specialty healthcare provider. They can examine and diagnose patients, as well as prescribe medication.
Career Growth: According to the BLS, the need for nurse practitioners will grow 28% by 2028. The needs for nurse practitioners will grow as the U.S. population grows older and looks to more preventative healthcare options.
Pay: The BLS states that the average annual salary for a nurse practitioner is $113,930.
Education Requirements: People who want to be nurse practitioners have to earn at least a master's degree in one of the Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) roles. They also have to be licensed in their state and pass a national certification exam.
Statisticians apply mathematical and statistical techniques to data in order to solve problems. Statisticians can work for a variety of industries, including federal government and research companies.
Career Growth: The BLS says the demand for statisticians will grow 30% by 2028. This growth will be due to businesses and organizations needing these people to interpret all the digital data they collect.
Pay: The median annual pay for statisticians is estimated to be $87,780.
Education Requirements: Anyone who wants to be a statistician typically needs a master's degree. However, there are certain roles where only a bachelor's is required.
6. Physician Assistant
A physician assistant is a key member of any healthcare team. They are responsible for working with physicians and other healthcare workers to ensure their patients are being properly cared for.
Career Growth: The BLS predicts that the need for physician assistants will grow by 31% by 2028. The demand for healthcare will increase as the population gets older, and physician assistants will help provide that care.
Pay: The average annual salary for a physician assistant is currently estimated to be $108,610.
Education Requirements: Those looking to become a physician assistant typically need a master's degree. They also must be licensed in the state they work in.
5. Information Security Analyst
Information security analysts are the people responsible for creating and implementing strategies around a company's computer network. They can work for a variety of industries, including nonprofits and government agencies.
Career Growth: The BLS says the demand for information security analysts will grow 31% by 2028. The demand will grow because more organizations will need people to create secure and innovative solutions to protect their information from hackers. Organizations will also need these people to implement a security strategy for their networks.
Pay: The latest data shows that the average annual pay for an information security analyst is $98,350.
Education Requirements: If you're interested in becoming an information security analyst, most jobs require a bachelor's degree in a computer-related field. The BLS also states that employers generally prefer to hire analysts with experience in a similar role.
4. Occupational Therapy Assistant
An occupational therapy assistant is responsible for helping patients recover, develop, and/or maintain the daily skills they need to work and live, like getting dressed or walking. Occupational therapy assistants can choose to work with children or adults.
Career Growth: According to the BLS, the need for occupational therapy assistants will grow 33% by 2028. That growth correlates with the aging population in the U.S.
Pay: The median annual salary for an occupational therapy assistant in the United States is $57,620.
Education Requirements: The BLS reports that occupational therapy assistants need an associate's degree from an accredited occupational therapy assistant program. However, job requirements may vary from state to state.
3. Personal Care Aide/Home Health Aide
Personal care aides and home health care aides help those with disabilities and chronic illnesses with their daily activities. This includes helping people with their hygiene needs, planning and preparing their meals, and keeping track of their appointments.
Career Growth: These occupations are expected to grow 38% by 2028. The need for personal care aides and home health aides will continue to grow as the population grows older.
Pay: The BLS reports that the annual salary for a personal care aide is $24,060. The annual salary for a home health aide is estimated to be $24,200.
Education Requirements: According to the BLS, home health aides and personal care aides typically need a high school diploma or equivalent. However, those working in certified home health or hospice agencies need formal training and must pass a standardized test.
2. Wind Turbine Service Technician
A wind turbine service technician is responsible for the installation, maintenance and repair of wind turbines. They spend a majority of their time outside and a great heights. They may also be called on during the evening or weekend to handle emergency situations.
Career Growth: The BLS reports that the demand for wind turbine service technicians will grow 56% by 2028. The alternative energy industry is expected to grow rapidly over the next decade, and that industry includes wind energy. As more and more people turn to wind-powered energy, more technicians will be needed to ensure the turbines are working properly.
Pay: According to the BLS, the annual salary for a wind turbine service technician is $54,370.
Education Requirements: Most wind turbine service technicians go to a technical school and get on-the-job training.
1. Solar Photovoltaic Installer
The BLS reports that the fastest growing occupation in the U.S. is that of a solar photovoltaic installer. These people are responsible for the installation and maintenance of solar panel systems.
Career Growth: The need for solar photovoltaic installers is expected to grow a whopping 63% by 2028. That large demand is due to more people being predicted to adopt solar energy over the next decade.
Pay: The median pay for a solar photovoltaic installer in the U.S. is $42,680 annually.
Education Requirements: According to the BLS, most installers need a high school diploma and get on-the-job training for a year. However, some people in this role do go to a technical school or community college.
For the full list of fast-growing careers in the U.S., click here.
Job prospects for these careers look great heading into 2020, however it's also important that you pursue a career you're passionate about. If you still aren't sure what that career is, take this free quiz to find out what your strengths are, and which careers you would perform best in.
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