McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

Features

May 6, 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 | Photo Reprints
Features
  • 7-10-ducks.jpg PAWS: Happy Easter

    As I was growing up, it seemed that Easter was always a time for giving a cute little furry animal as a gift. We seem to associate this holiday with bunnies and chicks, and of course, kitties and puppies.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fairly Snotty McAlester livestock report

    On Tuesday, 1,200 head of cattle were sold at the McAlester Union Stockyards. Steers sold $2 to $9 higher than at the last sale and heifers sold $4 to $8 higher.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Low blood-sugar levels make for grousing spouses

    Husbands and wives reported being most unhappy with their spouses when their blood-sugar levels were lowest, usually at night, according to research released this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Missing a meal, dieting or just being hungry may be the reason, researchers said.

    April 18, 2014

  • treadmill-very-fast.jpg Tax deduction for a gym membership?

    April marks another tax season when millions of Americans will deduct expenses related to home ownership, children and education from their annual tax bill. These deductions exist because of their perceived value to society; they encourage behaviors that keep the wheels of the economy turning. So why shouldn't the tax code be revised to reward preventive health?

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • David Cantrell OSU Extension: Cattle tips for spring

    As we continue to move into spring here in Pittsburg County and cattle prices are at an all-time high, here are a few basic management tips to ensure herd health and productivity of the herd.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • RICHARDSON 50 1.jpg Richardsons celebrate 50 years of marriage

    Haileyville High School graduates Jim and Connie Richardson, of rural Claremore, will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary Saturday.

    April 15, 2014 2 Photos

  • MHS Student Painters MHS Student Paintings

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pet of the Week Pet of the Week

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Book Sale Book Sale

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Miss Teen McAlester Miss Teen McAlester

    April 9, 2014 1 Photo

Seasonal Content
AP Video
Raw: More Than 100,000 Gather for Easter Sunday Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest
NDN Video
Jabari Parker's Top 5 Plays From Duke Career Kourtney Kardashian Is a Bikini Babe More Manpower Than Ever Expected At 4/20 Rally Debunk'd: Miley Cyrus AIDS, Cheeseburgers Cause Cancer, Military Warning Bill Previewing the NBA playoffs Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite My name is Cocaine Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Lohan Gets Candid About Her Sex List The 2014 New York Auto Show Meet Johnny Manziel's New Girlfriend Chelsea Clinton Announces Pregnancy Funny: Celebrating Easter with Martha Stewart and Friends Man Accuses 'X-Men' Director Bryan Singer of Sexually Abusing Him As a Teenager Man hit with $525 federal fine after he doesn't pay for soda refill Lea Michele & Naya Rivera Feuding? Jabari Parker declares for the NBA draft Singing Nun Belts Out Cyndi Lauper New West, Texas Explosion Video Swim Daily, Throwback Thursday
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.