Whether you’re a recent high school or college grad, you may not be entirely sure what to do next. But, you do know this: you want to be successful and you want to love what you do. Explore these popular careers paths for young adults that will hone your talents and interests, and provide healthy paychecks and room for growth.
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER
Let’s face it – you have an advantage over more experienced marketing professionals in that you know what’s up with social media. Learn the ins and outs of content development, planning and executing marketing initiatives, managing schedules, and strategizing for clients all on your favorite social media outlets. You practically live and breath social media anyway – why not take your talent to the next level and earn money for it?
Degrees: Marketing, Communications, Journalism, or English
Average Salary: $27,000-$74,000 (payscale.com)
Web developers play a leading role in the evolution of the internet as we know it. If you are creative, tech savvy, and understand basic user experience online, perhaps a career as a web developer is the route for you. Learn graphic design, coding, and how to problem solve to maintain the functionality of a website.
Degrees: Marketing, Communications, Business, or high school education
Average Salary: $34,000-$87,000 (payscale.com)
HEALTH CARE SUPPORT PROFESSIONAL
One of the fastest growing fields in the U.S., health care is rewarding both personally and financially. Surgical technologist, radiologic technologist, medical assistants, physical therapist assistants, and dental hygienists are all in-demand positions and among the top 25 health care support jobs (U.S. News) in 2017. If you have a love for biological sciences and for helping others, consider a career in health care support.
Degrees: Typically an accredited associate’s program
Average Salary: $39,000-$88,000 (payscale.com)
VIDEO OR FILM EDITOR
Have a love for TV and movies? Consider editing post-production film to create finalized story lines for audiences. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in this field is expected to grow 13% from 2016-2026 (faster than average). You’ll have the opportunity to be creative and take advantage of generous pay. According to cheetsheet.com, this is one of the highest paying creative jobs out there, with the potential to make six figures annually.
Degrees: Bachelor’s or master’s degree in film production
Average Salary: $28,000-$162,000 (bls.gov)
If you’re more of a numbers person, consider a career as a financial analyst. You’ll conduct economic research to manage a person or company’s finances and make recommendations for their investments. The primary benefits of becoming a financial analyst are upward mobility and excellent pay. However, this career path also offers little flexibility, with hours often in excess of 40 a week. If you love to hustle and lots of money, you got this.
Degrees: Business administration, economics, accounting, statistics
Average Salary: $43,000-$83,000 (payscale.com)
Graphic designers concept and develop marketing materials, catalogs, product packaging, signage, and basically anything you see from print to digital ads to websites. If you have an artistic side, graphic design is a great creative outlet that can offer steady work and excellent pay. The marketing industry also provides plenty of opportunities for professional development and career growth. Ad agencies are also often fun work environments with generous perks for employees.
Degrees: Marketing, communications, graphic design
Average Salary: $30,000-$82,000 (bls.gov)
Every business in the world relies on computer software. As a software engineer, you’ll design, develop, and test computer software. You must be well versed in mathematical analysis, computer science, and the latest in technology. You’ll also have the opportunity to work in some of the cooler office environments with new-age company cultures, and take advantage of sweet perks and pay.
Degrees: Computer science, mathematics, software engineering, computer information systems
Average Salary: $58,000-$129,000 (payscale.com)
PUBLIC RELATIONS MANAGER
Are you an excellent communicator – both verbal and written? You may consider a career as a public relations manager. You would be responsible for maintaining a positive public image and the brand integrity of a company or individual. You will write press releases, give statements to the public, create campaigns, and get out into the community to establish brand awareness and positive relationships with other organizations. This career path also offers plenty of opportunities for growth.
Degrees: marketing, communications, journalism
Average Salary: $40,000-$100,000 (payscale.com)
Just because you’re fresh out of school, doesn’t mean you have to find a job you’re unsure of, making only enough to survive on Ramen every night. Really think about your personal interests and how that translates to a career, and you’ll be on your way to a six-figure paycheck in no time.