A Moving Target: Where Will The Jobs Be?

By Sharon Hodge

Road with arrowsFrom STEM careers to healthcare, dental hygienist to translator, the hot jobs of the near future are the subject of study and projection from all players in the economy: schools, businesses, training centers, colleges and universities, state and federal government.

And while the numbers may vary from study to study and region to region, there does seem to be a general consensus about where the growth in jobs will come. That “where,” however, doesn’t refer only to the industry or job type, but also to the geographic location.

So, while most high school students are at least starting to think about what kind of career they would like to have and the skills or degree they might need to attain that, a couple of questions to add into the equation might be: Where do I see myself living in the next five years? Am I willing to relocate to take advantage of better job prospects?

The hot jobs

High-skill jobs, which require a four-year bachelor’s degree at least, such as software developers, computer engineers, data analysts, physician assistants, software developers and petroleum engineers, “are expected to become the most lucrative and highest demand professions in the next three years,” according to a USA TODAY analysis of workforce projections by Economic Modeling Specialists Intl., a division of CareerBuilder.

Hot spots

Significant job growth in most high-skill jobs is expected in four Texas metros, three in Utah and three in the Pacific Northwest with the creation of nearly 260,000 jobs. America's largest cities – New York, Washington, Los Angeles, Boston and Chicago – will generate 322,000 jobs as well.

Houston, Dallas, New York, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Boston, Seattle, Atlanta and Denver create the most middle-skill jobs. Las Vegas and Memphis are expected to offer a good share of new middle-skill jobs.

These projections are subject to change, but give you a good idea of how location can impact the number of potential jobs in your skill categories that are available. Do a little research and poke around into a variety of metro areas.

Find out about the major industries, developments, cultural offerings, physical features, etc.

About the Author

Sharon Hodge