With a souring economy and rising food and gas prices, workers worry about layoffs. But what if you worked in an industry immune from economic downturns?
According to Sophia Koropeckyj, senior economist at Moody's Economy.com in West Chester, Pa., industries that may keep workers out of the unemployment office include health care, education, environment, security and energy.
The aging population will keep hiring for nurses steady, she said.
"The demand will continue to rise regardless of the economy," Koropeckyj said.
When it comes to security, there is an increasing demand for information technology specialists.
"Everyone is concerned about people getting access to private information," she said.
Government jobs may be affected only slightly by a downturn. The federal government outsources a lot of its jobs, including food provision, waste removal, security and call centers. While tax revenues may be down and hiring limited for state and municipal positions, there will always be a demand for public safety officers, court clerks, administrative service managers and the like.
Most in demand: Administrative services managers.
Training: Bachelor's degree preferred.
Average pay: $68,000.
A bad economy may limit what people spend but probably won't keep them from seeking medical attention. Health care is one of the fastest-growing job sectors. In demand are physicians, nurses, physical therapists, pharmacists and health aides. The need will grow as the population ages. Some hospitals offer signing bonuses and other perks.
Most in demand: Registered nurses.
Training: An associate or bachelor's degree; diploma from approved nursing program.
Average pay: $58,500.
A recession won't stop crime. In fact, as funds are limited more crimes may occur. The demand for police officers, port security specialists and security experts will increase. Data security specialists are sought to prevent terrorism and identity theft. "People depend more and more on computers to store information," said Koropeckyj. As technology gets more sophisticated, IT pros have to keep up with trends to combat hackers.
Most in demand: Data security specialist.
Training: Bachelor's degree in computer science preferred.
Average pay: $41,470.
Many Americans are thinking green to help combat global warming. As companies try to develop "green" technology, demand for engineers and scientists will grow. In high demand are environmental engineers who employ their knowledge to curb air, water and soil pollution.
Most in demand: Environmental engineer.
Training: Bachelor's degree in environmental engineering. To hold title of professional engineer, must get license from state board of registration.
Average pay: $47,960.
As gas prices rise, those discovering new means of developing fossil and alternative fuels will be needed. About 80% of oil industry employees will reach retirement age in the next decade, according to Challenger, Gray & Christmas. Jobs related to alternative and renewable energy should see steady growth. Physicists may be employed by energy companies to research ways to curb fuel consumption.
Most in demand: Physicist.
Training: Master's degree.
Average pay: $72,910.