While it may seem like the “best jobs” of any given year are tricky things to quantify, the numbers are in for 2015, and they don’t lie.
That’s because this year’s top jobs are all about numbers. As Business Insider reports, CareerCast.com has released its 27th annual Jobs Rated report, and three of the top four entries — actuary (No. 1), mathematician (No. 2), and statistician (No. 4) — center on mathematics. Rounding out the top five are audiologist (No. 2) and biomedical engineer (No. 5).
Why all the math-related gigs? CareerCast.com publisher Tony Lee says those jobs tend to be “financially lucrative, offer abundant opportunities for advancement, and provide the opportunity to do great work in a supportive environment.” Those are the types of qualities that determine the list placements, as CareerCast.com uses data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor and the Census Bureau, as well as trade studies and various other sources, to rate 200 professions on such criteria as income, environmental factors, stress level, physical demands, and future hiring outlook.
Actuaries — whose jobs entail calculating the financial costs of risk — are naturally pleased by this year’s rankings. According to Audrey Halvorson, who serves on the American Academy of Actuaries board of directors, individuals in her field are “well paid and well respected,” and they have the opportunity to use their interest in mathematics to participate in “a dynamic business world.”
Data suggests mid-level actuaries make $94,209 per year, which is more than three of the other four jobs in the top five. From a purely monetary standpoint, the most attractive of those upper-tier vocations is mathematician, as mid-level workers can expect to earn $102,182 a year.
As for the worst jobs of 2015, the bottom five are broadcaster, cook, enlisted military personnel, lumberjack, and newspaper reporter. Click here for the full report, and if you already read about these job rankings in your local newspaper, say a little prayer for the poor man or woman who wrote the story.