4 Best Jobs for the Future


BLS Announces the Fastest Growing Jobs of the Next Decade

Want to “future-proof” your career? It might help to know the most in-demand jobs for the future. And although we don’t have a crystal ball to tell you for certain what the best careers for the next 10 years will be, we can show you the next best thing: data-informed projections. 

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) releases a list of the fastest growing occupations by education level. According to the experts, these are some of the best jobs for the future within the top occupations, as they are predicted to see the most job openings requiring at least a bachelor’s degree over the coming decade.

First, consider where you are now and where you’d like to be in five to 10 years. Perhaps you’re a registered nurse hoping to earn a bachelor’s degree or dreaming of becoming a nurse practitioner. Maybe you’re looking to change careers and want to take the first step by checking out a master’s degree in a new field. No matter what your career goals and educational aspirations are, Ohio State can help you reach your potential.

In this article, we’ll examine four of the fastest growing jobs, as well as their salaries and educational requirements.


Registered nurses with bachelor’s degrees

The career outlook for registered nurses is strong. According to the BLS, demand will increase for health care services delivered by registered nurses due to an aging population and rise in chronic health conditions. Between now and 2030, there will be an estimated 194,500 additional openings for RNs – making it the second fastest growing occupation for people with bachelor’s degrees. The 2020 median annual salary for registered nurses is $75,330.

Earning a BSN degree online opens new career opportunities to registered nurses and can also set the foundation for a master's in nursing or other graduate nursing certification

Explore the online RN-BSN program


Nurse practitioners

Do you want to become a leader within your health care career? Consider becoming a nurse practitioner. Due to a growing emphasis on preventative care, employment of nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists and nurse midwives is projected to grow 45 percent from 2020 to 2030. Nurse practitioners often have more autonomy as they are qualified to diagnose, prescribe, and to dictate the care of their patients. Nurse practitioners earned a median annual wage of $111,680 in 2020.

You can become a nurse practitioner with a nursing master’s degree or a Doctor of Nursing Practice, although the industry is shifting to favor nurses with doctoral degrees.

The Ohio State University College of Nursing offers two pathways to the DNP: The online BSN to DNP, a combined program that awards both the nursing master’s degree and the DNP degree, and the online Post-Master’s DNP for nurses who already have a master’s degree. 

Explore all online nursing programs


Health care social workers

Social worker roles in general are expected to grow over the next 10 years, with the BLS predicting we’ll see demand for these positions increase by 12 percent by 2030.

Employment of health care social workers specifically is projected to grow 13 percent – faster than the average for all occupations. Just as the demand for nurses like RNs and DNPs will grow due to an aging population, health care social workers will continue to be in demand to help these populations and their families navigate new lifestyles and medications and connect them to needed services. Health care social workers can expect to earn a median annual salary of $56,750.

Ohio State offers two paths to a Master of Social Work degree. If you’ve earned your Bachelor of Social Work within the past five years, you may be eligible for our Master of Social Advanced Standing Alternative Program (MSW-ASAP).  The traditional MSW program is open to those with all undergraduate educational backgrounds and takes two years to complete. Both programs can be completed entirely online, with a field placement completed close to where you live.

Explore the online MSW program


Instructional coordinators

Instructional coordinators – master’s-prepared education professionals responsible for designing and assessing learning programs – are in demand. The BLS reports that instructional coordinator openings are expected to grow 10 percent from 2020 to 2030.

With the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on education, instructional coordinators with an expertise in learning technology will be well prepared for the growing number of online and hybrid educational experiences.

Ohio State’s online graduate education programs – the Master of Learning Technologies and the Master of Arts in Art Education – were ranked No. 10 in the country by U.S. News & World Report for our online Educational and Instructional Media Design specialty.

Explore Ohio State’s online graduate education programs


No matter which route you choose, Ohio State’s top-ranked online programs can help make your educational dreams a reality and prepare you for the best careers for the future. Our degrees and certificates are taught by the same expert faculty that teach on campus – meaning you’ll have access to a world-renowned Ohio State education from wherever you call home. Once you’ve earned your degree, you’ll join one of the largest alumni networks in the nation and be well positioned to secure one of these best jobs for the future. 

Ready to take the plunge? Reach out for more information, and we’ll connect you with an advisor in your program of interest. 

4 Best Jobs for the Future: Registered Nurse, Nurse Practitioner, Health Care Social Worker, Instructional Coordinator

Last modified: 
January 25, 2022