The pandemic has changed our world. It’s changed the way we work, play, learn and shop. These changes also meant that companies had to find new ways to do business, as employees start re-evaluating their lives and what they want from their jobs.
According to Statistics Canada, from September to November 2021, the most common reason people quit their jobs was to go to school. If you’re one of the many Canadians who have decided to train for a new career, how do you know which career path to choose? One important consideration is what your prospects are of finding a job in that field. Using data from Forbes and Employment and Social Development Canada, we found some of the top growing career fields in 2022 and their future outlook.
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Nurse practitioner (Median hourly wage: $53.37)
Even before the pandemic, nurse practitioners were in high demand and it was one of those jobs dominated by women. Since they can diagnose and treat illnesses, they often provide primary healthcare in remote and under-serviced areas, essentially operating as doctors without the huge student debt. With many nurse practitioners retiring — some because they reached retirement age and others because being on the COVID-fighting frontlines has taken a physical and mental toll — the shortage is expected to continue in the next few years and job prospects for prospective candidates are good.
Related: My story: I survived COVID while home alone with three kids.
Physician assistant (Median hourly wage: $53.37)
Physician assistants are another type of primary healthcare provider who can diagnose and treat illnesses without being actual doctors. Like doctors, they undergo rigorous medical training and have to meet the requirements of a regulatory body. Unlike doctors, however, they can start working sooner since they don’t have to complete the same type of residency program. Physician assistants have one of the jobs in demand in Canada in 2022 and beyond, with the shortage expected to continue at least until 2028.
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Respiratory therapist (Median hourly wage: $36.00)
Respiratory therapists used to quietly do their job, helping people breathe. Then COVID came along and thrust them into the limelight: after all, they have the skills to help optimize lung function and use equipment like ventilators. Not only is this now one of the booming careers in Canada due to greater awareness but there’s also been a surge in demand for respiratory therapists to help fight the effects of the virus. However, like other healthcare workers during the pandemic, respiratory therapists have seen a high rate of exhaustion and burnout, so the shortage is expected to last for a few more years.
Related: 10 signs you’re heading for a burnout diagnosis and 5 ways to rectify it.
Speech-language pathologist (Median hourly wage: $40.38)
Speech-language pathologists are on the rise. They not only help children overcome speech and language disorders, but also treat these disorders in adults. In addition, they treat swallowing disorders in patients who suffer from illnesses like multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, mouth or throat cancer, ALS and Alzheimer’s disease. The shortage of SLPs is expected to continue for the next few years, mainly because a larger and older population means more people will need this kind of therapy.
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Epidemiologist (Median hourly wage: $45.13)
COVID has illustrated once again just how important taking the right public health measures is for a country. These decisions are based on the work of epidemiologists, who analyze data specifically related to diseases and predict how public health policy will impact the spread of these diseases. As the pandemic created awareness of what epidemiologists do, this has become fastest growing jobs in Canada. At the same time, there are more epidemiology job openings than there are epidemiologists and this trend will likely continue for the next few years as people in the field reach retirement age.
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Statistician (Median hourly wage: $45.13)
As one of the low-stress jobs that pay more than $100,000 a year a year, it’s no wonder that more people are looking to become statisticians. There’s growing demand for statisticians too, since they not only analyze and interpret data but then also apply their findings to real-world situations. This can be very useful in public health and emergency management but also in business. With the shortage of statisticians expected to continue until at least 2028, the prospects for this career are good.
See also: 20 highest-paying in-demand jobs in Canada for 2022.
Actuary (Median hourly wage: $45.13)
Actuaries focus on financial risk management, mainly in the insurance industry. As our world changes, so do the types of risk we face and actuaries develop insurance products that take these new types of risk into account. There is increasing demand for actuaries as the population ages and wants more in terms of life insurance, retirement savings plans and mutual funds.
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Data scientist (Median hourly wage: $37.50)
Another job that proved more important than most people thought when COVID came along and will be in demand in a post-pandemic world is that of data scientist. Their ability to use data to predict possible future outcomes is in demand in government but also in other industries, including finance, telecommunications and tech, making this one of the top 10 emerging careers. In fact, the demand for their services is so high that about half of the job openings created until 2028 are expected to be from newly created positions rather than people retiring or moving on to other jobs.
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Operations research analyst (Median hourly wage: $45.13)
You can be that busybody who annoys everyone by telling them how to do their job or you can become an operations research analyst who gets paid big money to, well, tells everyone how to do their job. There is a growing demand for operations research analysts who use a variety of tools, including statistical analysis and mathematical modelling, to help organizations solve problems. Like similar jobs that involve data analysis, there is a continued shortage of operations research analysts as the growing demand means new jobs are created faster than new candidates qualify to fill those positions.
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Systems security analyst (Median hourly wage: $41.01)
As our world moves ever more online, there is a high demand for better cybersecurity measures. Systems security analysts identify security risks to computer systems and data, find ways to minimize those risks and create contingency plans in case of security breaches. Nearly half of the job openings expected until 2028 will be because of current workers retiring, while new positions are created at such a fast pace that there will be a shortage of candidates who can fill these positions.
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