25 Highest Paying Jobs

March 8, 2019 by Grant Suneson

Americans entering the workforce can have a number of different reasons for pursuing one career over another. Some look for an occupation that allows them to utilize their natural gifts, while others follow their passions and do work they find meaningful. Yet for many, the main impetus for deciding on a particular career is often simply compensation.

The median pay across all jobs in America is $46,072 a year. There are many professions that tend to pay much higher than that — some of which pay more than double the U.S. median wage.

24/7 Wall St. reviewed median weekly earnings by detailed occupation from the Bureau of Labor Statistics to determine America’s 25 highest paying jobs.

These careers often require high levels of specialization, whether it is technical expertise to work with complicated machines, years of studying in medical or law school, or significant experience in managing employees and keeping a company’s investors happy.

These skills are often acquired through higher education. Of the 25 highest paying jobs, 24 have a bachelor’s degree attainment rate above 50% among job holders. Nationwide, just 32.0% of adults hold a bachelor’s degree or higher.

To identify the highest paying jobs in America, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed 2018 annual averages of median weekly earnings for full-time wage and salary workers by detailed occupation from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The number of workers employed in each occupation was also obtained from the BLS. The estimated yearly earnings for each occupation was calculated from the median weekly earnings figures.

Click here to see the 25 highest paying jobs.

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25. Industrial engineers, including health and safety
> 2018 median annual earnings: $77,948
> Total number of workers: 245,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: N/A
> Managers, all other with a bachelor’s degree: N/A

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24. Computer systems analysts
> 2018 median annual earnings: $79,092
> Total number of workers: 580,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +9.1%
> Industrial engineers with a bachelor’s degree: 73.8%

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23. Management analysts
> 2018 median annual earnings: $79,664
> Total number of workers: 635,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +14.3%
> Management analysts with a bachelor’s degree: 78.6%

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22. Mechanical engineers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $81,224
> Total number of workers: 313,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +8.8%
> Mechanical engineers with a bachelor’s degree: 75.6%

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21. Marketing and sales managers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $81,484
> Total number of workers: 963,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +10.1%
> Marketing and sales managers with a bachelor’s degree: 68.9%

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20. Computer programmers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $82,732
> Total number of workers: 428,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: -7.2%
> Computer programmers with a bachelor’s degree: 73.3%

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19. Judges, magistrates, and other judicial workers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $83,304
> Total number of workers: 69,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +5.6%
> Judicial workers with a bachelor’s degree: 98.2%

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18. Information security analysts
> 2018 median annual earnings: $85,020
> Total number of workers: 93,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +28.5%
> Information security analysts with a bachelor’s degree: 67.5%

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17. Electrical and electronics engineers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $85,592
> Total number of workers: 282,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +2.0%
> Electrical and electronics engineers with a bachelor’s degree: 20.6%

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16. Veterinarians
> 2018 median annual earnings: $87,204
> Total number of workers: 64,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +18.8%
> Veterinarians with a bachelor’s degree: 100.0%

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15. Aircraft pilots and flight engineers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $90,636
> Total number of workers: 98,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +3.4%
> Aircraft pilots and flight engineers with a bachelor’s degree: 73.7%

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14. Physician assistants
> 2018 median annual earnings: $91,104
> Total number of workers: 118,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +37.3%
> Physician assistants with a bachelor’s degree: 93.2%

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13. Computer network architects
> 2018 median annual earnings: $91,780
> Total number of workers: 112,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +6.5%
> Computer network architects with a bachelor’s degree: 60.2%

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12. Computer hardware engineers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $92,144
> Total number of workers: 70,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +5.5%
> Computer hardware engineers with a bachelor’s degree: 75.1%

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11. Aerospace engineers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $92,976
> Total number of workers: 145,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +6.1%
> Aerospace engineers with a bachelor’s degree: 86.4%

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10. Chemical engineers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $96,616
> Total number of workers: 65,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +7.5%
> Chemical engineers with a bachelor’s degree: 90.6%

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9. Software developers, applications and systems software
> 2018 median annual earnings: $96,928
> Total number of workers: 1,611,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +30.7%
> Software developers with a bachelor’s degree: 85.2%

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8. Computer and information systems managers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $97,604
> Total number of workers: 601,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +12.0%
> Information systems managers with a bachelor’s degree: 74.4%

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7. Dentists
> 2018 median annual earnings: $97,968
> Total number of workers: 56,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +19.4%
> Dentists with a bachelor’s degree: 100.0%

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6. Nurse practitioners
> 2018 median annual earnings: $98,488
> Total number of workers: 158,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +36.1%
> Nurse practitioners with a bachelor’s degree: 98.5%

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5. Lawyers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $101,244
> Total number of workers: 853,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +8.2%
> Lawyers with a bachelor’s degree: 98.2%

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4. Physicians and surgeons
> 2018 median annual earnings: $104,052
> Total number of workers: 827,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +11.4%
> Physicians and surgeons with a bachelor’s degree: 99.4%

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3. Pharmacists
> 2018 median annual earnings: $107,692
> Total number of workers: 263,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +5.6%
> Pharmacists with a bachelor’s degree: 97.5%

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2. Architectural and engineering managers
> 2018 median annual earnings: $115,752
> Total number of workers: 149,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: +5.5%
> Architectural and engineering managers with a bachelor’s degree: 84.7%

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1. Chief executives
> 2018 median annual earnings: $119,132
> Total number of workers: 1,098,000
> Projected employment change 2016-2026: -3.9%
> Chief executives with a bachelor’s degree: 69.7%