Few industries are quite as specialized – and, in terms of the knowledge and training necessary for success, as demanding – as aerospace and electrical engineering. But recent research makes it clear that the necessary hard work pays off in the form of some of the most lucrative salaries available in the American job market.
According to a 24/7 Wall Street analysis of Labor Department data, aerospace engineers are the sixth highest-paid profession in the U.S. by median weekly earnings, bringing in $1,892 per week. Multiplied by 52 for an annual salary, that sum comes out to $98,384 per year, well above the national household median income of about $57,000.
Electrical engineers were not far behind. Their median weekly earnings stood at $1,803, or $93,756 on an annual basis.
Both of these professions showed similar numbers in terms of projected job growth over the 10-year period between 2016 and 2026. Aerospace engineering is expected to grow 6.1 percent during this time, while electrical and electronics engineers surpassed that figure by a slight margin with 6.5 percent projected expansion through the same period.
Salary is not the be-all, end-all of what makes a job worth keeping, but both of these fields presented tangible benefits according to other metrics, as well. A separate report by 24/7 Wall Street published on USA Today found that among workers in the field of professional, scientific and technical services – which, as an umbrella term, includes STEM professions – 87.1 percent had paid leave, and 82.8 percent had access to health insurance. These figures outstrip those of several other prominent white-collar jobs.