Mt. Vernon Register-News

Features

May 3, 2013

The best and worst jobs in the current economy

With rapid changes in the economy, some jobs are valued more than others, meaning if you can land one, there's usually higher pay and more perks.

Meanwhile, other jobs that have traditionally been considered desirable have slipped toward the bottom of the heap.

With growing concern that the U.S. labor force is deficient in workers with science and technology skills, education now emphasizes what is known as STEM – science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Students are encouraged to choose a STEM field of study and the job market is currently rewarding those who do.

A recent Wall Street Journal report found that petroleum engineers can earn $93,500 a year as a starting salary. Computer engineers can start at $71,700. For chemical engineers, the starting pay can be as high as $67,600.

Compare that to new hires in educational services. In that industry starting employees earn an average of just under $40,000 a year.

The best to the worst

CareerCast.com recently released its list of the best and worst jobs in America, taking into account not only pay and benefits but working conditions as well. Topping the list is actuary, a numbers cruncher who measures the financial impact of risk and uncertainty – two things very prevalent in today's economy.

Want to be an actuary? The Society of Actuaries and Casualty Actuarial Society has an informative website that tells you not only what actuaries do but provides quite a bit of useful information for those seeking to enter this rather esoteric line of work.

The list also includes biomedical engineer, software engineer, audiologist, financial planner, dental hygienist, occupational therapist, optometrist, and computer systems analyst.

The worst job in America? According to the list, it's newspaper reporter, a profession once glamorized by movies, books and the Watergate scandal.

The job of newspaper reporter has been on the decline in the CareerCast list for a number of years, because of relatively low pay, tight deadlines and poor working conditions. With shrinking newsrooms, reporters now have to worry about losing this least-valued job.

Text Only
Features
  • Freshman.jpg 8 crucial tips for college freshmen

    With school starting back up around the country, no one has a bigger deer-in-the-headlights look than college freshmen.

    August 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Can 6 seconds launch a career? A generation of Vine stars sure hopes so.

    A year ago, Shawn Mendes filmed himself singing a tentative acoustic cover of the Justin Bieber song "As Long as You Love Me" and put the results on Vine. He wasn't expecting much response. "I didn't really want anything to happen; I just kind of wanted to see what people would think," says Mendes, 16. "I posted that first Vine and woke up the next morning with 10,000 followers. That was pretty cool."

    August 14, 2014

  • Screen Shot 2014-08-12 at 3.09.32 PM.png VIDEO: Stars react to Robin Williams' death

    Prior to the premiere of “The Expendables 3” in Los Angeles, several movie stars shared their thoughts on the death of actor and comedian Robin Williams.

    August 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • job-fair.jpg Job market tilting toward workers

    The balance of power in the job market is shifting slowly toward employees from employers.

    August 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • ruralpoverty.jpg How rural poverty is changing: Your fate is increasingly tied to your town

    The town of Las Animas takes about five minutes to drive through when the one stoplight is blinking yellow, as usual. It's easy to miss but hard to escape. Just ask Frank Martinez.

    August 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dartmouth.jpg Break the college cartel

    Ask liberals why college is getting so expensive, and they'll probably tell you it's a case of government neglect. Ask conservatives the same question, and they'll tell you the opposite.

    August 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 3.43.11 PM.png Your brain helps you judge a face before you even see it

    In a new study published in The Journal of Neuroscience, researchers report that the amygdala — a part of the brain associated with decision making, memory and emotion — plays a part in telling us who to trust almost instantly.

    August 6, 2014 1 Photo

  • 20140805-AMX-PORK5.jpg 'Baconholics' undeterred by 30-year high pork prices

    With images of pigs and barbecued meats tattooed on his left calf, Brian Polak is doing what he can to cope with the highest price of bacon in three decades. The 41-year-old self-proclaimed "baconholic" now often cures his own at home to help reduce costs.

    August 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • 20140802-AMX-MARKETING021 (1).jpg Controversial Amway-style sales approach draws greater scrutiny

    Enrique Martinez didn't like chocolate, but he was eating as many as 10 pieces a day, drinking chocolate protein shakes and rubbing a chocolate-based skin cream on his face. The chocolate came from MXI Corp., which uses a controversial business model called multilevel marketing -- companies without a sales force that recruit their customers to sell products, often in bulk to other customers, who might in turn sell to other customers, and so on.

    August 4, 2014 1 Photo

  • Screen Shot 2014-07-31 at 2.12.55 PM.png VIDEO: Five-year-old doesn't want her brother to grow up

    Sadie, an adorable 5-year-old from Phoenix, wants her brother to stay young forever, so much so that her emotional reaction to the thought of him getting older has drawn more than 10 million views on YouTube.

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

Twitter Updates
Facebook
Stocks