Fastest Growing & Declining Occupations in America

This is the third of the 3-series on America’s disappearing middle class. Part One is here. Part Two on the disappearing black middle class is here.

Not all is doom and gloom. As reported by Ruth Mantell for Yahoo!, June 16, 2011, among the 20 fastest growing occupations from the U.S. Labor Department’s employment projections for 2008 to 2018, 11 occupations earn at least $10,000 more than the national annual median wage of $32,390 as of May of 2008.

Examples of these workers are biomedical engineers, network systems and data communications analysts, and financial examiners.

Meanwhile, more than half of the 20 occupations with the fastest projected decline — think sewing machine operators, photographic processing machine operators and file clerks — were below the national median wage. Read the Labor Department’s report.

Here are the 10 fastest growing occupations from 2008 to 2018, and their median wages, according to the Labor Department:

  1. Biomedical engineers, median wages of $77,400
  2. Network systems and data communications analysts, $71,100
  3. Home health aides, $20,460
  4. Personal and home care aides, $19,180
  5. Financial examiners, $70,930
  6. Medical scientists, except epidemiologists, $72,590
  7. Physician assistants, $81,230
  8. Skin care specialists, $28,730
  9. Biochemists and biophysicists, $82,840
  10. Athletic trainers, $39,640

Here are the 10 fastest declining occupations:

  1. Textile bleaching and dyeing machine operators and tenders, $23,680
  2. Textile winding, twisting, and drawing out machine setters, operators, and tenders, $23,970
  3. Textile knitting and weaving machine setters, operators, and tenders, $25,400
  4. Shoe machine operators and tenders, $25,090
  5. Extruding and forming machine setters, operators, and tenders, synthetic and glass fibers, $31,160
  6. Sewing machine operators, $19,870
  7. Semiconductor processors, $32,230
  8. Textile cutting machine setters, operators, and tenders, $22,620
  9. Postal Service mail sorters, processors, and processing machine operators, $50,020
  10. Fabric menders, except garment, $28,470

Adaptation Is Key

Workers with diminishing prospects will need to evolve, experts said. People can transform themselves. Those with a good set of flexible skills will be able to adapt. Creativity and flexibility are the key.

While technology may replace some workers, it also creates opportunities to use new skills. To succeed, a worker must be an active learner who innovates and adapts.


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If O had his way, which he does right now, all of us would be relying upon Feds 4 assistance.

Bring on 2012 ASAP!