In the current economic climate, where do you start when it comes to jobs? Reader’s Digest suggests one avenue: figure out what the indispensable jobs in America are. With research from 24/7 Wall St, they’ve come up with a list of 10 crucial jobs that seem to be recession-proof (many of which are actually a good fit with military skills and training).
1. Correctional Officer (Median Income: $39,040)
Prisons aren’t going away anytime soon, and neither is the need for seasoned correctional officers who make up the bulk of the prison workforce. If you’re looking for something a little less rigorous after serving in the military, though, be warned. According to corrections.com, “Correctional officers are always under pressure to do their jobs right. Their anxiety levels are extremely high with supervisors breathing down their necks and micromanaging their every action. In some cases, the opposite is true and the officer must rely on his or her own training, skills and knowledge to handle the situation at hand. Working solo is dangerous but often the case in overcrowded prison systems.”
2. Electrical Power Line Repairers (Median Income: $58,030)
Alternative sources of energy are gaining a foothold (and are proving to be fertile ground for veteran jobs — check out this article), but here’s another example of an oldie-but-goodie not going away anytime soon: energy consumption is still on the rise, and maintenance workers for electric lines will be in demand for the foreseeable future.
3. Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers (Median Income: $53,540)
Law enforcement jobs are a natural fit for former military personnel — check out Military.com’s Law Enforcement Jobs section for job listings and guides on jumping into civilian law enforcement.
4. Nuclear Power Reactor Operators (Median Income: $75,650)
Speaking of alternative energy, Reuters estimates that there will be between 90-350 new nuclear power plants going up between now and 2030 — that means there should be plenty of operator positions coming open in the next few years, as long as you can fight back any fears about a China Syndrome.
5. Air Traffic Controller (Median Income: $108,040)
More people than ever are taking to the friendly skies, and air traffic controllers are a key component in keeping them friendly. The National Air Traffic Controllers Association reports that many controllers are retiring, and staff are getting short-handed — the perfect situation for a super-competent military veteran to step into, as long as you can handle the long hours and pressure.
6. Telecommunications Equipment Installers and Repairers (Median Income:$54,710)
It’s a telecommunications world, and between phones and Internet lines, there’s a constant need to keep it all going 24-7.
7. Railroad Conductors and Yardmasters (Median Income: $49,770)
Think the railroad is going the way of the dodo bird? Think again. While it may not be the number once choice for personal travel, railroads are still key for freight delivery and urban transit, and railroad conductors and yardmasters help keep everything running smoothly — for the experiences of a military veteran who works in railroad management, check out this article.
8. Firefighters (Median Income: $45,250)
An alarming casualty of the current economic climate is city budgets for firefighters, as this recent article shows — but the need for firefighters certainly isn’t going away, and military veterans are well acquainted with emergency situations and organized response.
9. Water/Wastewater Treatment Plant and System Operators (Median Income: $40,770)
As electricity is a constant in our lives (see #2), so is the need for clean, treated water — a big challenge given current usage in society, plus threats like flooding and chemical pollution. Thus, the need for operators in water and liquid waste treatment plants is as great as ever.
10. Registered Nurses (Median Income: $64,690)
Last week we brought you the plight of Nick Colgin, a decorated medic who’s found it hard to get a job since separating from the Army — but with the way healthcare is being practiced in the US, we’re hopeful that his situation proves to eventually be an exception and not a rule. With a shortage of primary care physicians, there’s been a need for more nurses to become nurse practitioners, and military veterans with medical experience certainly know a thing or two about practitioning in tough environments.