Exploring the Highest Paying Career Options in the World

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Hagar Samir

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12 September, 2023

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9 mins read

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Students always face a lot of issues after graduating high school, from choosing a suitable major and university to balancing their time in order to get as much work as possible and graduate with honours. One important detail you have to keep in mind while applying for college is whether the major you chose will provide for you and give you a good career or not. Of course, there are a lot of things that will determine your career choice, including your marks in school and your interests. 

There are a lot of jobs nowadays, and the trick is to choose what job makes the most money, jobs that pay well, and jobs you enjoy. The highest-paying jobs differ from one time to another; you always have to stay on trend and keep checking with what’s happening around you in order to know the best options for you. We’ve gathered a list of the current highest-paying jobs for you to keep in mind while choosing! 

Highest Paying Jobs

The Current Highest-Paying Jobs

Salaries are prone to change according to the market needs; however, there are a few careers that have always been known for paying well. Below is a list of the highest-paying jobs we recommend you consider!

1. Chief Executive Officer

We know this job isn’t that easy to obtain, but it comes after hard work and dedication! A chief executive officer, also known as CEO, is the highest position in a company. It’s also one of the highest-paying jobs of all time. CEOs are responsible for managing the company’s corporate affairs, making crucial corporate decisions, and managing the company’s resources. They’re also responsible for directing the company towards its goals and objectives. Monitoring the company's performance, the chief executive officer is the highest in the hierarchy, and many people dream of having this position! 

A CEO’s salary ranges anywhere from $156,412 and $760,362! This depends on the type of the company, how much it’s making, and its success in the market. In order to be a successful CEO, there are some qualities to possess, including:

  • Leadership

  • Management

  • Decision-Making skills

  • Communication skills

  • Diverse skillset

  • Teamwork and organizational skills

For you to master how to be a CEO, an in-depth understanding of business, such as taxation, accounting, marketing, finance, and organizational behaviour and structure, is needed. Having both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree is crucial and will increase your potential. The best universities to help you become a good CEO include Stanford University, the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Chicago, and Boston College. 

2. Neurosurgeon

Considered one of the highest-paying jobs, if not the highest, in the world, neurosurgeons have a huge responsibility! They are specially trained medical doctors who both diagnose and treat conditions that have an effect on the nervous system, spinal cords, and the brain. They usually perform surgeries on the nervous system, and can also provide nonsurgical treatments. 

Some of the qualities you need to be a successful neurosurgeon are as follows: 

  • Emotional Resilience

  • Problem-solving and Diagnostic Skills

  • Teamwork

  • Excellent Communication Skills 

  • Clinical Abilities and Surgical Skills

Neurosurgeons make around $496,000 in a year, so in order to achieve that, they have to have an MBBS degree, a PG in a neurosurgery programme, and a fellowship to specialise in one particular area. The best universities for neurosurgery are Stanford University, the University of California, Yale University, and Columbia University. 

Highest Paying Jobs

3. Anaesthesiologist

Another career that is considered one of the most high-paying jobs in the world is anaesthesiology. Anaesthesiologists are trained physicians who specialise in preoperative care. They have a very important role in surgical procedures because they make sure that patients receive the right type and amount of anaesthesia while under the scalpel. They are also responsible for monitoring the patient’s vitals during the procedure and ensuring that they are unconscious while in surgery. In addition, they monitor the patient’s recovery by ensuring that they have the correct pain medication. 

There are some qualities that must be present to be a good anaesthesiologist; these qualities include:

  • Critical Thinking

  • Stress Management

  • Focus

  • Problem-Solving

  • Teamwork

An anesthesiologist makes around $326,296 a year; it can increase or decrease depending on many factors. A bachelor’s degree in a field like pre-medicine, biology, or chemistry is needed as a first step, and the next step will be applying to medical school and earning a medical degree and a license. The process usually takes up to 12 or 13 years of medical training. The best universities to study in this field include King's College London, Johns Hopkins University, Harvard University, and New York University.

4. Orthodontist

Orthodontists are considered one of the highest-paying jobs in the dental field. Being an orthodontist involves examining, diagnosing, and fixing any dental abnormalities that are related to the position of the jaws and the teeth. They also specialise in straightening the teeth structure, fixing crooked smiles, and adjusting bite positions. They usually use braces and retainers. 

To be an orthodontist, you have to possess certain qualities, such as:

  • Good Communication

  • Patience 

  • To be kind to patients 

An orthodontist makes around $304,000 yearly, and it can differ according to the experience. This is why it’s important for them to have a bachelor’s degree, a dental degree (DDS or DMD), and a certificate of orthodontics. The most suitable universities for that include the University of Washington, King’s College London, Queen Mary University of London, and Boston University.

5. Pediatrician 

This is not only one of the most famous jobs, but it is also one of the most high-paying jobs. It is hard to be a paediatrician; you have to have a certain level of patience that not everyone has! They diagnose, prevent, and treat diseases and injuries in children. They also conduct various examinations, prescribe medications, and offer guidance on child health. 

Because of how hard the job is, you must have certain skills; these skills include:

  • Communication

  • Problem-solving

  • Ability to relate to children

  • Health care

  • Teamwork

  • Empathy 

Pediatricians’ annual salary is around $238,000, depending on the experience, education, and the place they work at. An MBBS and an MD degree in paediatrics are needed to become a paediatrician. The best universities to get a degree in paediatrics include the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Harvard, the University of Cincinnati, and the University of Bolton.

6. Physicians 

Third on the list of the highest-paying jobs is physicians. They diagnose various diseases, treat illnesses, and address health issues. Physicians examine patients, take medical histories, and prescribe medications. They also perform diagnostic tests and monitor patients’ diet, hygiene, and preventive healthcare. They are divided into two categories: general practitioners and specialist physicians; they can specialise in several areas, including cardiology, sports medicine, infectious disease, geriatrics, and many more. 

The qualities that must be present in a physician include: 

  • Emotional Intelligence

  • Problem-solving skills

  • Attention to detail

  • Communication skills

  • Resilience

  • Teamwork

A physician makes around $227,000 a year, which can differ depending on a lot of factors. To become a physician, you have to have a medical degree and complete a residency or internship for a few years to be able to work independently. The best universities to go to if you plan on being a physician are the University of Oxford, the University of Manchester, the University of Cambridge, and the University of Pennsylvania. All of these universities have accommodation options near them that are full of amenities and features to facilitate your stay!

7. Surgeons 

This is one of the most important and high-paying jobs! Surgeons are highly-regarded medical professionals who are responsible for performing advanced procedures on people. They are also able to diagnose the patient and provide the patient with postoperative surgical care and treatment. Surgeons are usually the leaders of the team! They divide their work into two parts: office hours and operative hours, and both are equally important! Surgeons stay long hours in the operating room and work many shifts in order to save as many people as possible. 

The skills required to be a surgeon include:

  • Attention to detail

  • Stress Management

  • Time Management

  • Communication

  • Teamwork

  • Organisation

A surgeon’s annual salary is around $208,000. This can increase or decrease according to the surgeon’s experience and education. For students to become successful surgeons, they must go through several years of schooling and on-the-job training to be able to operate independently on patients. They also need to choose a field to specialise in when they want to become surgeons. The best universities to help students are the University of California, the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of Glasgow.

Highest Paying Jobs

8. Senior Software Engineering 

Working in senior software engineering is also one of the best ways to have one of the highest-paying jobs! A senior software engineer is responsible for managing software development projects, producing clean code, and leading a team of engineers within a company. They have to have a decent amount of experience in software development and project management and have in-depth knowledge of programming languages and databases. They also test and document software for client applications, guide junior engineers, and translate business requirements into technical specifications. They are also responsible for managing project priorities and timelines. 

A senior software engineer makes around $121,758 yearly. Below is a list of skills a senior software engineer should have:

  • Programming and debugging

  • Logical thinking and problem-solving

  • Communication skills

  • Teamwork and coordination

A Computer Science, Engineering, and/or Web Development degree is needed in order to pursue a career in this field. After completing your degree, it’s advised that you continue with a master’s degree in these fields to ensure a bigger and better career and pay. The experience this degree provides will help you get promoted and perform better at your job! The best universities to attend if you want a career in software engineering are the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Stanford University, Harvard University, the University of Pennsylvania, Imperial College London, and the University of Cambridge. All of these universities have student accommodation options that are just a walk away from them.

9. Investment Banking 

Another career that is considered one of the highest-paying jobs is investment banking. People who work in investment banking are financial advisors to a lot of things, including corporations and governments. They are responsible for issuing debts, selling equity, and helping companies. They also prepare bond offerings, negotiate a merger with a rival company, or arrange a private placement of these bonds. Investment bankers are considered one of the most important parts of a company, which is why it’s important for them to choose wisely, as investment bankers help build the company. 

The average salary of an investment banker per year is around $115,465. In order to have a good career in investment banking, there are some skills you have to possess, including:

  • Arranging finances

  • Equity financing

  • Negotiation of mergers and acquisitions

  • Networking and Communication skills

  • Time management

  • Impeccable qualitative and quantitative skills

A bachelor’s degree in Finance, Economics, or Marketing is needed if you want to have a career in investment banking. Also, pursuing an MBA, CFA, or even an advanced degree in maths will help you even more, as it will increase your knowledge and advance your experience. This will, in turn, make you a competitive candidate! The most suitable universities for investment banking include the London School of Economics, the University of Warwick, the University of Reading, and the University of Bath. There are several accommodation options located near their universities for students to choose from.  Check out our guide on the top universities for accounting and finance!

Highest Paying Jobs

10. Data Science 

Data science is one of the highest-paying jobs. A data scientist is someone who collects a huge amount of data using analytical, statistical, and programmable skills. It is the data scientist’s responsibility to use this data and try to develop solutions for the company they work for. They usually use deep learning algorithms and AI-fueled programs to help them in their work. It’s also advised that they have presentation skills, as they will need to present trends and data to people who most likely do not have the same skills. 

As for the salary, a data scientist makes around $97,658 per year. You’ll need to develop some skills in order to excel, including:

  • Statistical Knowledge and Analysis

  • Machine learning and Programming

  • Analytical and Critical thinking

  • Inquisitiveness

  • Interpersonal skills

  • Data storytelling

Science, Mathematics, Computer Science, and Engineering fields are the best fields to pursue if you’re interested in a career in data science. After completing your bachelor’s in your chosen field, you can also pursue a master’s degree to increase your potential! The best universities to study to help you increase your knowledge are the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Oxford, Harvard University, and the University of Edinburgh. It’s also easy to find student accommodation near these universities because of Casita, which will help you settle in! 

The best thing about all of these high-paying jobs is that you can easily find courses for them! It’s totally fine if you’re not interested in any of these jobs that are supposed to pay well. You can excel and do everything you want in your own career! Choose a good university to ensure high-quality education, study well, and pursue a postgraduate degree if your chosen field requires it. Good luck! 


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Frequently Asked Questions

Which career options has the highest salary?

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The career options that have the highest salary include:

  • Neurosurgery 

  • Data Science

  • Investment Banking

  • Software Engineering 

Which field has the highest salary in the world?

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Neurosurgery has the highest salary. However, it requires a lot of studying and dedication.

Which country pays the highest salary?

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Switzerland pays the highest salary. It’s known to pay well, and most people move there for a better chance of living and employment.