Over 70 percent of workers either hate their jobs or are disengaged at work, according to a Gallup poll of the American workplace conducted between 2010 and 2012. Some of these employees may be bored with jobs that don’t challenge or fulfill them. Lucky for them, there are many interesting and unusual careers available that are actually in high demand. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, most jobs will increase by 14.3 percent through 2020. However, these unusual careers will increase in demand by twice, and even four times the national average. This is a good time for women to branch out and seek new career paths in several exciting and lucrative fields.
Biomedical engineers design and build artificial body parts to replace injured limbs. They also design and build rehabilitative exercise equipment and develop new drug therapies. This cutting-edge career is projected to grow by 62 percent through 2020, according to the BLS, which more than quadruples the national growth rate for other occupations. Biomedical engineers need a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering, and according to May 2012 BLS data, they earned an annual mean wage of $ 91,200.
Interpreters and Translators
Interpreters and translators may work in schools, hospitals, courtrooms and conference centers, where they convert information from one language to another. Interpreters translate spoken language and sign language, whereas translators convert written material. The BLS projects a 42 percent growth rate for these professionals as a result of a global economy and a multicultural society. A bachelor’s degree in any area is usually sufficient to enter this field, but fluency in English and at least one more language is the most important requirement. The annual mean wage of interpreters and translators was $53,410 according to May 2012 BLS data.
Audiologists diagnose patients with hearing, balance and other ear problems. They also fit hearing aids on patients and counsel both patients and their families on other ways to communicate, such as lip reading or sign language. As a result of an aging population, and also infants with hearing disorders, audiologist jobs will increase by 37 percent through 2020, reports the BLS. The annual mean wage for audiologists was $72,890 in May 2012, and the educational requirement is a doctoral degree in audiology.
Geographers study the earth and its land, features and inhabitants. They also analyze political and cultural structures in geographical regions. Geographers use a variety of methods in their research process, including interviews, focus groups, field analysis, maps, satellite images and photographs. A focus on sustainability fuels the 35 percent growth rate for geographers, as developers and policy makers require information to understand the effects of human impacts on the environment. Geographers earned an average of $74,020 as of May 2012. A bachelor’s degree in geography is sufficient for entry-level positions; however, some employers require a master’s degree or a Ph.D.
- Gallup: State of the American Workplace
- U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics: Biomedical Engineers
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: May 2012 National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Interpreters and Translators
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Audiologists
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Geographers
Terri Williams began writing professionally in 1997, working with a large nonprofit organization. Her articles have appeared in various online publications including Yahoo, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report University Directory, and the Center for Digital Ethics and Policy at Loyola University Chicago. Williams has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.