Physician Assistant/Associate Tops List of Best Careers of 2021

Physician Assistant/Associate Tops List of Best Careers of 2021

Melissa W.

Happy New Year from your team at Senior Class Graduation Products! We’ve been counting down the top careers of 2021 from U.S. News for the last two weeks and we’re down to the final three! It’s no surprise that due to the increase in demand for medical professionals, that two of the top three (and four of the top five) are in the medical field. Read on for the top 3 careers of 2021!

#3: Nurse Practitioner 

Nurse Practitioners (NP) is a nurse with an advanced graduate degree in the nursing profession. They’re trained to work in a variety of areas and are oftentimes sought after as much as a traditional practitioner. NPs may also be referred to as ARNP (Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner) or APRN (Advanced Practice Registered Nurse). According to the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, “​​NPs are quickly becoming the health partner of choice for millions of Americans. As clinicians that blend clinical expertise in diagnosing and treating health conditions with an added emphasis on disease prevention and health management, NPs bring a comprehensive perspective and personal touch to health care.”

Education Requirement: Completion of a Master’s or Doctoral degree program must be completed in order to become a NP. Training goes far beyond the initial registered nurse training (RN). “Didactic and clinical courses prepare nurses with specialized knowledge and clinical competency to practice in primary care, acute care and long-term health care settings.”

Average Salary: Skilled NPs can see an average of $109,820

Top Schools for NPs:

#2: Software Developer

Coding, and software, and apps, oh my! Software developers are in big demand in the world of Big Tech. Our lives revolve around electronics, and software developers are at the frontlines of streamlining technology to make ordinary lives a lot more efficient. Software developers are much more than website designers, they create ever-important technology tools that are often overlooked! Social media, online banking, car starting apps – Every little thing tied to technology was painstakingly designed by a software developer and the more we link technology to everyday life activities, the more in-demand software developers will be!

Education Requirement: Bachelor’s degree + hands-on experience, although a Master’s degree will open a lot more doors.

Average Salary: Skilled Software Developers stand to make an average of $107,510

Top Schools for Software Developers:

#1: Physician Assistant

The top bill for the top careers of 2021 goes to the Physician Assistant! Physician Assistants are much more than their name implies. PAs work alongside a team of medical professionals to diagnose patients and develop treatment plans as well as prescribe proper medications. They offer so much to their patients that many prefer to see PAs as their primary care provider. Recently, PAs have pushed to rename their title to Physician Associate, stating the word “assistant” labels them as more of a trainee than an actual medical professional.

Education Requirement: Physician Assistants/Associates have a range of education under their belts. Many have Bachelor’s degrees while others have mostly specialized training and on-the-job experience, which is often seen as an equivalent to education. PA certification is required in addition to either a 4-year degree or on-the-job training. Certification lasts 10 years and interested parties must renew every 10 years in order to stay licensed.

Average Salary: Skilled Physician Assistants make an average of $112,260

Top Schools for Physician Assistants:

So there you have it! The top 3 careers of 2021. Each of the five we’ve explored this month are seeing significant growth as demand continues to rise for healthcare and technology workers. Education remains paramount to succeeding in these careers, but job security is high. Here’s the top five one more time:

  1. Physician Assistant/Associate
  2. Software Engineer
  3. Nurse Practitioner
  4. Medical & Health Services Manager
  5. Physician

Are you training to be one of the skilled workers above? Let us know in the comments!

The team at Senior Class Graduation Products wishes you a very happy and healthy New Year with many opportunities to learn and grow! Cheers to 2022!


Cover photo by Patty Brito on Unsplash

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