The Top Highest Paid Jobs for Diverse Talent in 2017

What are the top diversity careers that are the highest-paid jobs in 2017?

Jobs in the healthcare sector are projected to be the most in-demand jobs for the coming years. But do they pay well too? A look at the US News Best Jobs Rankings shows that the 3 top best-paying jobs for 2017, are:

  • Anesthesiologist 
  • Surgeon 
  • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon

The rest of its list of the 25 Best-Paying Jobs for 2017 shows 14 more in healthcare, six jobs in business, two jobs in sales & marketing, and one each in engineering, tech, and social services. Each of these three best-paying jobs, plus the rest in the list, has an average salary of more than $100,000 per year. (See also

US News partly bases its rankings of the best jobs according to the highest projected number of openings from 2014 to 2024, as categorized by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (Read more here on the US News methodology of ranking the best jobs.) 

Healthcare Industry Jobs Outlook: Pay & Positions

The healthcare and social assistance sector is seen by the Bureau of Labor Statistics as one of the industries with the fastest-growing wage and salary employment between 2014-2024. The 20 occupations with the highest median annual pay as of the December 2015 list published by the BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics) Occupational Outlook Handbook also shows the top nine jobs are in the healthcare sector. The first eight had a median pay of equal to or greater than $187,200 per year. These jobs include: 

  • Surgeons 
  • Psychologists
  • Physicians & surgeons, all others
  • Orthodontists
  • Oral & maxillofacial surgeons
  • Obstetricians and gynecologists
  • Internists, general
  • Anesthesiologists

The list continues: 

  • Family and general practitioners – $184,390/year. 
  • Chief executives – $175,110/year  
  • Dentists, all other specialists – $171,000/year  
  • Practitioners, general – $170,300/year  
  • Nurse anesthetists – $157,140/year 
  • Dentists, general – 152,700/year 
  • Architectural and engineering managers – $132,800/year 
  • Computer and information systems managers – $131,600/year  
  • Petroleum engineers – $129,990/year  
  • Marketing managers – $128,750/year  
  • Judges, magistrate judges, and magistrates – $126,930/year 
  • Air traffic controllers – $122,950/year 

Most of the above-mentioned occupations belong to what the BLS categorizes as Professional and Technical occupations. They require specified skills and knowledge, a college degree or higher, as well as advanced training and experience. Even at the entry-level, a college degree is often required.

A Forbes article, however, citing LinkedIn Salary, gives a more updated median pay, and likewise, most high-paying jobs in their list belong to the healthcare industry. In putting together its list, LinkedIn looked at the salary data that verified LinkedIn members provided. Each job title considered for the roster had to have at least 50 salary reports from those members. All in all, a dozen of the 20 jobs on the list fall into the medical or healthcare realm. 

Near the top of the list – at number 3 – was the position of anesthesiologist. Workers in that role, according to the numbers, earn a median annual salary of $350,000. That’s more than the median salary for a surgeon, which brings a $338,000 paycheck and placed fourth.

Non-degree Occupation Outlook: Pay & Positions

How about non-degree occupations – what are the highest-paying jobs? Based on the US News Best Jobs for 2017 that do not require a college degree, many of these jobs are still in healthcare: 

  • #1. Occupational Therapy Assistant: median salary is $57,870; expected job openings: 14,100
  • #2. Diagnostic Medical Sonographer: median salary is $68,970; expected job openings: 16,000 
  • #3. Web Developer: median salary is $64,970; expected job openings: 39,500 
  • #15. Home Health Aide: median salary is $21,920; expected job openings: 348,400 
  • #16. Wind Turbine Technician: median salary is $51,050; expected job openings: 4,800 
  • #23. Personal Care Aide: median salary is $20,980; expected job openings: 458,100 
  • #24. Veterinary Technician: median salary is $31,800; expected job openings: 17,900 
  • #25. Maintenance & Repair: median salary is $36,630; expected job openings: 83,000

For those seeking a job, deciding on a career, and/or making a career move, the above information can be of much help. 

A Healthy Career

What is clear from all this data is that there are great career opportunities for both degree and non-degree holders. It is a matter of perseverance in one’s job search, as well as the willingness and dedication to continually upgrade one’s skills and knowledge. Today, with the advances in science and technology disrupting many industries, continuous education can help make candidates even more hireable and retainable, giving them an edge in the workplace. 

For those seeking healthcare jobs and diversity-committed employers, visit Our mission is helping companies promote their jobs and build their brand, and sending targeted and qualified diversity candidates directly to the best jobs possible.