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Ian Turner
Ian Turner

9 Highest Paid Social Work Jobs In 2020: Salary Of 60k A Year Or More!

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2006 social workers held about 595,000 jobs. According to the Bureau, employment of social workers was expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2016.

9 Highest Paid Social Work Jobs in 2020: Salary of 60k a year or more!

This report highlights data for women and men who usually work full time (35 hours or more per week) in wage and salary jobs, with sections focusing on characteristics, such as age, race and Hispanic or Latino ethnicity, education, occupation, and more.

The occupational distributions of female and male full-time workers differ considerably. Compared with men, relatively few women work in natural resources, construction, and maintenance occupations and women are far more concentrated in office and administrative support jobs. (See chart 5 and table 2.)

Women also are more likely than men to work in professional and related occupations. In 2020, 33 percent of women worked in professional and related occupations, compared with 21 percent of men. Within the professional category, though, the proportion of women employed in the higher paying jobs is much smaller than the proportion of men employed in them. In 2020, 11 percent of women in professional and related occupations were employed in the relatively high-paying computer (median weekly earnings of $1,423 for women and $1,738 for men) and engineering ($1,382 for women and $1,626 for men) occupations, compared with 48 percent of men. Women were over twice as likely to work in education ($1,026 for women and $1,327 for men) and healthcare ($1,153 for women and $1,506 for men) jobs, which generally pay less than computer and engineering jobs. Sixty-six percent of women in professional occupations worked in education and healthcare jobs in 2020, compared with 29 percent of men. (See table 2.)

Among men, the most common job by far was truck driver (driver/sales workers and truck drivers, $916). In 2020, 2.4 million, or 4 percent, of all male full-wage and salary workers were truck drivers. Although engineering jobs are shown separately by specialty (civil, mechanical, etc.) in this report, if combined, engineer would be the second most common job for men. In 2020, a total of 1.8 million men were employed full time in the 16 designated engineering specialties (median weekly earnings ranging from $1,595 to $1,993). (See table 2.)

In 2020, 58 percent of women and 54 percent of men in wage and salary jobs were paid by the hour. Women who were paid hourly rates had median hourly earnings of $15.22 in 2020, which were 86 percent of the $17.75 median for men. (See tables 8 and 11.)

In 2020-21, the average base salary for public school teachers was $61,600, according to data from the National Teacher and Principal Survey. But that number varies widely from state to state. In New York, teachers earned the highest average base salary that school year at $90,222, while teachers in Mississippi earned the lowest at $46,862, according to 2020-21 data from the National Education Association.

A Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree and a state license to practice can earn you a six-figure salary as a veterinarian. Although the professional services industry has the highest concentration of veterinarians, and most work in private clinics and hospitals, you can also build a career within social advocacy organizations and museums and historical sites. Specialties include companion animal, food animal and food safety and inspection vets.

Chemical engineering jobs are expected to grow 14% through 2031, which is much faster than average for all occupations. The highest-paying jobs are in the Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, Texas, metro area, where chemical engineers earn a mean salary of $173,640.

Jobs for petroleum engineers are expected to grow 8% through 2031, for a gain of 1,900 jobs. The highest-paid petroleum engineers work in the New York City and Newark and Jersey City, New Jersey, metro area, where they earn an annual mean salary of $214,700.

The job outlook for financial managers is overwhelmingly positive: Employment is projected to grow by a healthy 17% through 2031, which means an increase of 123,100 jobs. The highest-paid financial managers can be found earning an annual mean wage of $209,100 in the metropolitan area encompassing New York City and Newark and Jersey City, New Jersey.

Orthotic and prosthetics professionals are among the highest paid non-physician health care providers. These professionals design, fabricate, measure and fit orthotic and prosthetic devices for all ages. They work with artificial limbs, braces, and other medical or surgical prosthetic devices. Positions are found in a variety of industries including:

Additional Information: Pharmacists must have a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.), a 4-year professional degree. They must also be licensed, which requires passing two exams. Between 2016 and 2026, an additional 17,400 pharmacist jobs are expected. The rising demand for prescription medications will lead to more demand for highly educated pharmacy professionals.

The representation of women, blacks and Hispanics holds pocketbook implications for workers. STEM jobs have relatively high earnings compared with many non-STEM jobs, and the earnings gap persists even after controlling for educational attainment. Among workers with similar education, STEM workers earn significantly more, on average, than non-STEM workers.

In spite of the earnings advantage that STEM workers have over non-STEM workers, the gender wage gap is wider in STEM occupations than in non-STEM jobs. This is partially because women are clustered in lower-paying STEM jobs in the health care industry and underrepresented in the more lucrative fields of engineering and computer science. The pattern is similar for blacks and Hispanics, who also tend to be concentrated in less lucrative STEM jobs, widening the measured earnings disparity.

Including healthcare practitioners and technicians as STEM occupations has broad ramifications for the key findings. There are 9.0 million health-related jobs, comprising 52% of the STEM workforce. Healthcare practitioners and technicians are largely women, thus their inclusion boosts the overall representation of women in the STEM workforce. These health-related occupations also have somewhat larger shares of black workers and smaller shares of Asian workers compared with other STEM occupations, which affects the racial and ethnic composition of the overall STEM workforce. Among college-educated workers who majored in a STEM field during their undergraduate education, those who majored in health professions are significantly more likely to work in a STEM occupation, so their inclusion increases figures on the retention of STEM-trained workers.

Social scientists are not included as a STEM occupation in this study, although other studies sometimes classify social sciences as a STEM job. As a practical matter, doing so makes little difference in the overall portrait of the STEM workforce because less than 1% of the workforce (about 280,000 workers in 2016) are classified as social scientists based on the Standard Occupational Classification system. See the sidebar for more on the characteristics of social scientists in the workforce.

Although women have made gains in representation in the STEM workforce over the past roughly 25 years, particularly in life and physical science jobs, they remain strongly underrepresented in some STEM job clusters, notably computer jobs and engineering.

Over the past 25 years the STEM workforce has become more racially and ethnically diverse, echoing increasing diversity in the workforce during that period. In 1990, 83% of STEM workers were white, 6% were Asian, 7% were black and 4% were Hispanic.

Within occupational clusters, the share of workers who are black or Hispanic varies widely (see Appendix).20Health technician and nursing jobs have some of the largest shares of black or Hispanic workers. For example, 37% of licensed practical and licensed vocational nurses are either black or Hispanic, as are a quarter or more of health support technicians (27%), medical records and health information technicians (25%), and clinical laboratory technologists and technicians (25%). Among registered nurses, 17% are black or Hispanic. By comparison, other health-related jobs have smaller shares of workers who are black or Hispanic including physicians and surgeons (11%), pharmacists (10%), dentists (9%), and physical therapists (9%). Just 5% of optometrists, veterinarians and chiropractors are black or Hispanic.

About one-in-five (19%) STEM workers in the U.S. are foreign born, broadly similar to the share in the overall workforce (18%). The vast majority of the Asian STEM workforce is foreign born (82%) as is the Asian workforce overall in the U.S. (81%). Black STEM workers, however, are more likely to be foreign born than black workers overall (22% vs. 14%). Hispanics working in STEM jobs are far less likely than those in the workforce overall to be foreign born (32% of Hispanic STEM workers are foreign born, compared with 54% of all employed Hispanics ages 25 and older).

Among full-time, year-round workers ages 25 and older, median earnings for STEM occupations were $71,000 in 2016.21 Comparable earnings for non-STEM workers were $43,000. Thus, STEM workers typically earn about two-thirds more than those in non-STEM jobs.22After adjusting for inflation, the typical earnings of STEM workers have increased since 1990, while earnings among non-STEM workers have been relatively flat.23Earnings vary significantly among STEM workers. Computer workers, mathematical workers and engineers/architects have median earnings between $81,100 and $83,000. In contrast, full-time, year-round healthcare practitioners and technicians have the lowest median earnings at $61,000.

In spite of the larger gender pay disparity among STEM workers, women working in STEM tend to be paid significantly more than women working in non-STEM occupations overall. The median earnings for women working full-time, year-round in non-STEM occupations are only $38,480. 041b061a72


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