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Fastest-Growing Jobs Are Also the Ones That Pay the Least


The good news is that the economy is recovering, employment opportunities are increasing, and many occupations are expected to grow by leaps and bounds over the next few years. The bad news? These “fastest growing jobs” barely pay above minimum wage – so if you’re looking to use your degree, let alone pay your student loans, you’ll need to look beyond these gigs.


(Photo Credit: dno1967b/Flickr)

Recently, examined data from the National Employment Law Project, comparing the number of low-wage workers earning $15 an hour or less against the projected growth of jobs over the next 17 years.

Do You Know What You're Worth?

The result? Many of the fastest-growing jobs are the ones that pay the least.

Martha C. White at Time calls these gigs “McJobs” – careers where you’ll be stuck in customer service, on your feet and mentally (and probably physically) exhausted at the end of an 8- to 10-hour day. They don’t just include flipping burgers though – as White explains, “about 1.2 million people work as personal care aides, providing crucial assistance to elderly or disabled people. As baby boomers age, the number of people working these jobs will increase by almost 50%.”

However, the average hourly wage for a personal care aide according PayScale’s Research Center is $10/hour – barely above minimum wage in most states. Despite the growing need for these skilled workers, it’s not a job many can take if they have financial needs themselves.

Unless you’re extremely passionate about the one of these fastest growing careers – and willing to rely on public assistance – you might want to consider other career paths. There may be less opportunity available, but you’ll find yourself less stressed out at the end of the day, every day.

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