Switching careers can feel less risky if you know your new field offers solid job prospects. Job opportunities for these five high-paying occupations are expected to see 30 percent growth from 2014 to 2024:

Nurse practitioner

As a nurse practitioner, you would be an advanced nurse — likely at a physician’s office or hospital — and would examine patients, consult with physicians and sometimes prescribe medication and laboratory tests. The annual median income for the role was $98,190 in 2015. You need a master’s degree to become one.

Physical therapist

Physical therapists work with people with injuries or chronic illnesses, helping with rehabilitation and healing. You could be a generalist or specialize in a certain area, such as orthopedics, geriatrics or sports. Workers in this profession earned an annual median income of $84,020 in 2015. You need a doctoral degree to become one.


If you like collecting and working with data, conducting research and analyzing results, a career in statistics could be a good fit. Statisticians work in a range of fields, including business, engineering, government and health care. The annual median income for the role was $80,110 in 2015. Statisticians typically have a master’s degree.

Physician assistant

As a physician assistant, you would work alongside physicians diagnosing patients, prescribing medication or doing research. You could choose to specialize in areas including primary care, surgery, emergency medicine and psychiatry. The annual median income for the job was $98,180 in 2015. You need a master’s degree to become one.

Personal financial adviser

Personal financial advisers can focus on a specific topic — such as investing — or counsel clients on a range of money questions. The annual median income for the field was $89,160 in 2015. You typically need at least a bachelor’s degree plus additional certifications to give investment advice or become a certified financial planner.