Best Jobs in America

CNNMoney/PayScale's top 100 careers with big growth, great pay and satisfying work.

1. Biomedical Engineer
Biomedical Engineer
1
"You can impact so many lives by creating technology that will repair a hip or help repair eyesight or allow somebody to breathe better," says Christine Schmidt, a professor of biomedical engineering at the University of Florida.
Median pay: $87,000
Top pay: $134,000
10-year job growth: 61.7%
Total jobs*: 15,700

What they do all day? The MRI, the pacemaker, artificial joints – biomedical engineers have helped make them the wonders they are today. BMEs, as they're called, work to design, create and improve medical devices such as prosthetics, artificial organs, and bioengineered skin.

How to get the job? BMEs typically have a bachelor's or master's in biomedical engineering, and may have an MBA, law degree, or M.D. as well. Employers value team players who can communicate complex ideas well; being research-oriented is another plus.

What's great? What's not? For those with a technical aptitude, it's an opportunity to make the world a better place. Every day, there's the potential to create something groundbreaking. But nine-to-fivers need not apply -- the hours can be long since exciting research doesn't tend to fit the 40-hour work week. --Kate Ashford

What they do all day? The MRI, the pacemaker, artificial joints – biomedical engineers have helped make them the wonders they are today. BMEs, as they're called, work to design, create and improve medical devices such as prosthetics, artificial organs, and bioengineered skin. --Kate Ashford

Quality of life ratings:
  • Personal satisfaction: A
  • Benefit to society: A
  • Flexibility: B
  • Low stress: A
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*Total jobs is estimated number of people working in broader BLS 'job family.'

Sources: PayScale.com, Bureau of Labor Statistics, and CNNMoney research

Do Biomedical Engineers have great jobs, or what? Are these great jobs, or what?
It's still a tough job market, so when CNNMoney, in partnership with data from PayScale.com, set out to find America's Best Jobs this year, first and foremost we looked for professions that offer great growth opportunities.

Other big factors: pay (how strong it is now, and how fast it's growing), overall job satisfaction, and how many jobs are in the field overall.
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