While prestige and wealth may not be part of what you’ll get with these careers, what you will get is – a career. One of the most common questions I hear as a career coach is “I’m thinking of changing careers, can you help me figure out what other options I have?” As a technology news geek, I’m nearly as addicted to the CNBC iPad app as I am my morning coffee; when I saw an article titled “America’s Most Underrated Jobs” I had to read it.

What I found was surprising, and inspiring. The careers listed were great options, with relatively low unemployment rates and comfortable incomes. According to CareerCast, these careers were ranked based on low stress, low environmental danger (surprising inclusion), low physical demands and median-to-high income levels.

5 recession resistant career changes

(unemployment rates are for 2010)

#1: With an average income of $68,3K and an unemployment rate at just 2.3%, Chiropractors, or Doctors of Chiropractic, rated right up at the top of the list.

#2: Making more than Chiropractors are Physical Therapists, or PTs, who diagnose and treat individuals with medial problems, illness or injuries. This career delivers an average salary of $74,1K and has a low unemployment rate of 2.0%.

#3: If you’re more scientific, think about becoming a Civil Engineer. These are the engineers that develop economical solutions to technical problems and link scientific discoveries and commercial applications to meet societal and consumer needs. This work provides an annual income of just over $76K with a low unemployment $3.9%.

#4: When’s the last time you had your teeth cleaned and thought, “I can do that?” Dental Hygienists make an average income of $67K and had an incredibly low unemployment rate of only 1.2%. It appears that despite tough times, people still want their teeth clean and their gums examined.

#5: Thinking of going on a diet? Why not become a Dietician and earn an income of $52K while planning food and nutrition programs for yourself and your patients? This health industry related profession has an unemployment rate that’s 6% less the national average at 3.2%.

If you’re considering a career change, take the time to speak with a professional career coach and determine what your transferable skills are as a first step. Many coaches offer free consultations and can provide direction on if a complete direction in your career is the right strategy for your individual needs.


Adriana Llames is a veteran career coach and acclaimed author of Career Sudoku: 9 Ways to Win the Job Search Game, released with top book seller Amazon.com. She is creator of “HR In-A-Box,” a Human Resources software product helping small businesses across America and a professional keynote speaker motivating and inspiring audiences with her focused programs on “9 Ways to Win the Job Search Game”, “Confessions of a Career Coach” and “Nice Girls End Up on Welfare.” For more information, visit www.adrianallames.com