25 Jobs and Occupations with the highest median annual wages in America
A program from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), called ‘The Occupational Employment Statistics’ produces employment and wage estimates for national and state level occupations. Based on the data available from May 2008, following are the highest paying jobs and occupations in America, along with the the median annual wages and a brief description of the occupation as provided by the US BLS.
Note that a highest paying job does not mean that it is in the highest demand.
1. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons (More than $166,400): Perform surgery on mouth, jaws, and related head and neck structure to execute difficult and multiple extractions of teeth, to remove tumors and other abnormal growths, to correct abnormal jaw relations by mandibular or maxillary revision, to prepare mouth for insertion of dental prosthesis, or to treat fractured jaws.
2. Orthodontists(More than $166,400): Examine, diagnose, and treat dental malocclusions and oral cavity anomalies. Design and fabricate appliances to realign teeth and jaws to produce and maintain normal function and to improve appearance.
3. Prosthodontists (More than $166,400) Construct oral prostheses to replace missing teeth and other oral structures to correct natural and acquired deformation of mouth and jaws, to restore and maintain oral function, such as chewing and speaking, and to improve appearance.
4. Physicians and surgeons (More than $166,400) : All physicians and surgeons not listed separately. This is general category for the physicians/doctors and surgeons, practice medicine and perform surgeries.
6. Chief executives ($158,560): Determine and formulate policies and provide the overall direction of companies or private and public sector organizations within the guidelines set up by a board of directors or similar governing body. Plan, direct, or coordinate operational activities at the highest level of management with the help of subordinate executives and staff managers.
6. Dentists, general ($142,870): Diagnose and treat diseases, injuries, and malformations of teeth and gums and related oral structures. May treat diseases of nerve, pulp, and other dental tissues affecting vitality of teeth.
7. Dentists, all other specialists ($137,970): All dentists who are not listed separately, and specialize in different fields in this category.
8. Engineering managers ($115,270): Plan, direct, or coordinate activities in such fields as architecture and engineering or research and development in these fields.
9. Podiatrists ($113,560): Diagnose and treat diseases and deformities of the human foot.
10. Natural sciences managers ($112,800): Plan, direct, or coordinate activities in such fields as life sciences, physical sciences, mathematics, statistics, and research and development in these fields.
11. Computer and information systems managers ($112,210): Plan, direct, or coordinate activities in such fields as electronic data processing, information systems, systems analysis, and computer programming.
12: Air traffic controllers ($111,870): Control air traffic on and within vicinity of airport and movement of air traffic between altitude sectors and control centers according to established procedures and policies. Authorize, regulate, and control commercial airline flights according to government or company regulations to expedite and ensure flight safety.
13. Airline pilots, copilots, and flight engineers ($111,680): Pilot and navigate the flight of multi-engine aircraft in regularly scheduled service for the transport of passengers and cargo. Requires Federal Air Transport rating and certification in specific aircraft type used. Include aircraft instructors with similar certification.
14. Lawyers ($110,590): Represent clients in criminal and civil litigation and other legal proceedings, draw up legal documents, and manage or advise clients on legal transactions. May specialize in a single area or may practice broadly in many areas of law.
15. Judges, magistrate judges, and magistrates ($110,220): Arbitrate, advise, adjudicate, or administer justice in a court of law. May sentence defendant in criminal cases according to government statutes. May determine liability of defendant in civil cases. May issue marriage licenses and perform wedding ceremonies.
16. Marketing managers($108,580): Determine the demand for products and services offered by a firm and its competitors and identify potential customers. Develop pricing strategies with the goal of maximizing the firm’s profits or share of the market while ensuring the firm’s customers are satisfied. Oversee product development or monitor trends that indicate the need for new products and services.
17. Petroleum engineers ($108,020): Devise methods to improve oil and gas well production and determine the need for new or modified tool designs. Oversee drilling and offer technical advice to achieve economical and satisfactory progress.
18. Pharmacists ($106,410): Dispense drugs prescribed by physicians and other health practitioners and provide information to patients about medications and their use. May advise physicians and other health practitioners on the selection, dosage, interactions, and side effects of medications.
19. Political scientists ($104,130): Study the origin, development, and operation of political systems. Research a wide range of subjects, such as relations between the United States and foreign countries, the beliefs and institutions of foreign nations, or the politics of small towns or a major metropolis. May study topics, such as public opinion, political decision making, and ideology. May analyze the structure and operation of governments, as well as various political entities. May conduct public opinion surveys, analyze election results, or analyze public documents.
20. Physicists ($102,890): Conduct research into the phases of physical phenomena, develop theories and laws on the basis of observation and experiments, and devise methods to apply laws and theories to industry and other fields.
21. Astronomers ($101,300): Observe, research, and interpret celestial and astronomical phenomena to increase basic knowledge and apply such information to practical problems.
22. Financial managers ($99,330): Plan, direct, and coordinate accounting, investing, banking, insurance, securities, and other financial activities of a branch, office, or department of an establishment.
23. Computer and information scientists, research ($97,970): Conduct research into fundamental computer and information science as theorists, designers, or inventors. Solve or develop solutions to problems in the field of computer hardware and software.
24. Computer hardware engineers ($97,400): Research, design, develop, and test computer or computer-related equipment for commercial, industrial, military, or scientific use. May supervise the manufacturing and installation of computer or computer-related equipment and components.
25. Sales managers ($97,260): Direct the actual distribution or movement of a product or service to the customer. Coordinate sales distribution by establishing sales territories, quotas, and goals and establish training programs for sales representatives. Analyze sales statistics gathered by staff to determine sales potential and inventory requirements and monitor the preferences of customers.
As mentioned before, a highest paying job does not mean that it is in the highest demand. For a summary of the jobs in high demand, you may want to look at previous articles such as Jobs and Occupations in highest demand, and
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