Firefighters, doctors and nurses considered most prestigious jobs
Careers in battling blazes or healing the sick are held in high esteem, according to survey.
NEW YORK (CNN) -- Firefighters, doctors and nurses should hold their heads up high as they head off to work, according to a Harris Interactive poll released Wednesday that found that Americans consider them to have the most prestigious professions.
Sixty-three percent of those surveyed said firefighters have "very great" prestige, followed by doctors at 58 percent, nurses at 55 percent, scientists at 54 percent, teachers at 52 percent and military officers at 51 percent.
Ranking lowest in prestige were the wheeler-and-dealer types: real estate brokers at 6 percent, stockbrokers at 11 percent, and business executives at 11 percent.
Playing a doctor or nurse on TV or the stage also ranked low -- only 12 percent of those polled felt acting has "very great" prestige. And only 16 percent of responders granted "very great" prestige to journalists.
Farmers, a category on the list for the first time this year, found a groundswell of support with 36 percent.
The Harris Interactive Poll measured the public perception of 23 professions, and was conducted by telephone between July 5 and 11 among a nationwide sample of 1,020 adults, with a sampling margin of plus or minus 3 percentage points.
The poll on prestigious professions, which has been conducted since 1977, has seen some interesting shifts over the past 29 years. Teachers have enjoyed the largest surge, rising 23 percentage points in the "very great" category.
Lawyers and scientists have suffered the worst declines, falling 15 and 12 points respectively.
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