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Top professions that surprisingly didn't make the top 30 this year

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Professions historically tied to African Americans, like Law, Medicine and Dentistry, or Accounting, Business and Finance are enticing, lucrative, and respected- but have these professions lost their edge when competing with other professions in the 21st century?

Indeed, these professions are valuable, still highly respected, and pay a handsome salary but 4 out of 5 didn’t even break into the top 30 for US News Best Jobs top 100 list! According to US News’ “100 Best Jobs” of 2014, those four professions didn’t make it in the top 30 spots- with ratings of #51, #39, and #41, respectively.

The Medicine and Dentistry profession were safe, as the Medicine profession hold ratings of #8, and Dentistry at #3 but what’s going to happen to the typical African American fields if they’re so low on the list?

The fields of Law (held ratings of #51), Accounting (held ratings of #39), and Financial advisor (held ratings of #41), with all the various areas of Business not making the top 30 either. In the Business field, unless it was technology, it didn’t make it in the top 30. Market Research Analyst was the only field of Business that made it in the top 30, ranking at #15 but keep in mind this was the only field of Business that made in the top 30.

With the number of openings, amount of chances to advance and be professionally fulfilled, along with the ability to meet financial obligations and responsibilities, the US News research concluded that it’s the science and technology fields that are “so-called” the best jobs to have in 2014, with the top 15 being in one of those fields. This isn’t to say that the professions of Law, Business, Accounting, and Finance aren’t vital in society or for people, but they just aren’t the top professions like they were in the past- so what has occurred for this evolution to have happened? Well, new professions emerge from societal changes, but what does this mean for the African American family?

Does the African American family need to alter its perception of Law, Medicine, and Business? Because in fact it’s the Black family that heavily promotes these certain professions to their children- hence why so many African Americans are represented, and have been for so many years, in the fields of Law, Medicine, and Business. That information would be surprising to many outside of the African American community (and to flunkies in the Black community because of ignorance of their own kind) because not only do people not place emphasis on being rightfully educated, but the media doesn’t place emphasis on telling true stories about African Americans (or maintains a bias style of reporting when it comes to Black news) but in fact it’s these three professions where African Americans enter into the most. The solution doesn’t have to be that the Black families turn away from pushing Law, Medicine, and Business because those professions are indeed top notch, and are historically woven into the thread of the African American community, but rather realize that there are other fields to enter into. That concept may be difficult to digest for many African Americans just because generation after generation the Black child in America has been sent into these professions. Let’s face it, these fields aren’t going anywhere- at least any time soon- so continue to put forth the effort in the common Black fields such as Law, Medicine, and Business but to keep in mind that as society evolves so do the professions, and you don’t want to be culturally left out of any profession.

“A lawyer, a doctor, or a businessman is what I want to be when I grow up” was always the African American child’s ‘soundtrack’, but if the STEM careers are the professions of the future then can the African American community be comfortable enough to encourage the youth to pursue these fields? Of course there’s something called the natural course- which means you’ll be in the career you were intended to be in anyway, but is it a possibility that the African American community can incorporate as much enthusiasm for the STEM fields just as much as the Law, Medicine, and Business fields?

According to The National Science Foundation, only 9.9% of Master’s degrees in the STEM professions were awarded to African Americans, in comparison to 63.2% of Caucasians. And will African Americans even be prepared for such fields due to poor representation in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics? Unfortunately this is an improvement because in 2001 Blacks made up only 8.6% of Master’s degrees in the STEM fields. Meanwhile, it’s a start in a progressive direction, but not where it could be.

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