10. Postmasters and Mail Superintendents
> Median annual income: $62,290
> Total number of people employed: 24,500
> Total new jobs (2010-2020): -6,800
Postmasters and mail superintendents manage the operations and support services of U.S. post offices. They are generally paid well to do so, and the top 10% of postmasters earned more than $84,890 in 2011. However, despite relatively high compensation, jobs in the profession are especially scarce. Between 2010 and 2020, the number of postmasters is expected to have one of the largest projected job declines among all occupations in the U.S., at 27.8%. Job loss rates for other post office professions are expected to be even worse. The number of positions for postal service clerks is expected to decline by 48.2%, while mail sorter jobs are expected to decline by 48.5%.
9. Subway and Streetcar Operators
> Median annual income: $63,820
> Total number of people employed: 6,500
> Total new jobs (2010-2020): 600
Subway and streetcar operators are responsible for transporting passengers in trains, trolleys, streetcars and other vehicles that run on tracks separated from most street and road traffic. Some operator jobs involve manually driving vehicles, and for the jobs that do not, operators must be capable of fully-controlling their vehicle in the event of an emergency. They can be well-paid for these skills, as the top 10% of operators earned over $73,280 in 2011, while the top 25% earned over $69,730. Jobs are limited, however, as the BLS projects just a 9.8% increase in the number of operators between 2010 and 2020, below the projected national rate of 14.3% for all occupations.
8. Farmers, Ranchers, and Other Agricultural Managers
> Median annual income: $64,660
> Total number of people employed: 1,202,500
> Total new jobs (2010-2020): -96,100
Farmers, ranchers and other agricultural managers are responsible for running the facilities that produce the country’s crops, and raise its livestock. They decide what to produce based on a number of considerations, ranging from market factors to soil conditions. Last year, the annual income for such workers ranged from less than $31,980 for the bottom 10% of earners to more than $112,150 for the top 10%. Finding such a job may become extremely difficult. The number of such jobs is expected to decline by 96,100 between 2010 and 2020, more than any other profession other than postal service workers, as increased productivity and rising factor costs put more farmers out of buisness. The BLS estimates that 78.9% of all farmers, ranchers and agricultural managers were self-employed in 2010.
7. Fashion Designers
> Median annual income: $64,690
> Total number of people employed: 21,500
> Total new jobs (2010-2020): 0
Fashion designers create clothing, footwear, accessories, and costumes for customers. They typically study fashion trends, sketch designs, choose materials, and market their finished products. Though any education beyond high school is not required, many designers have a relevant formal education from a two- or four-year college. In 2011, the top 10% of designers made over $127,820, though the bottom 10% made less than $32,700. Finding a job as a fashion designer may be challenging as the number of such jobs is not projected to grow meaningfully between 2010 and 2020. Also, almost 30% of all designers were self-employed in 2010.
6. First-Line Supervisors of Non-Retail Sales Workers
> Median annual income: $70,520
> Total number of people employed: 422,900
> Total new jobs (2010-2020): 17,100
Supervisors of non-retail sales are responsible for managing sales workers outside the retail sector. They are much better-paid than their counterparts in retail. In 2011, the median annual income for retail supervisors was just $36,480, while 90% of non-retail supervisors made at least $37,120 in annual income. While any education past high school is not necessary for the job, at least five years of prior experience in a related job is typically required. Job growth for the profession is expected to be limited, as the number of supervisors is expected to rise just 4% between 2010 and 2020 — less than one-third the projected national job growth rate for all occupations.