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Career Spotlight: Well-Paying Jobs That Won't Leave You Chained to a Desk

Article by Nicole on 01 Feb 2015
When it comes to choosing a college major and a career, you don't necessarily need to sacrifice financial stability for a job that doesn't require you to sit at a desk all day, every day. While virtually any career will have some need to sit and send/respond to emails, organize tasks, and deal with paperwork, many well-paying careers give job seekers the freedom to roam away from their computers and swivel chairs. Here's a sampling of careers you may want to look into if the idea of sitting at a computer all day makes your teeth itch.
 

Professor

Engineering, economics, law, and medical professors rank among some of the most well-paid academic positions. Tenured professors enjoy relatively high job security and often work in the classroom, or in the field conducting research. Office hours may be required, but they are limited to a handful each week.
Salary range: Approx. $100,000 - $122,000, depending on university and field of study
 
 

Engineer

Aerospace engineering, geological engineering, and chemical engineering offer exciting career prospects, often away from an office. While some desk work may be called for, these engineers often work in the field or laboratory settings conducting hands-on work.
Salary range: Approx. $97,000 - $105,000, depending on the area of engineering and other factors
 
 

Geoscientist

Geoscientists are among a field of Earth scientists who conduct research on natural landscapes. They find employment at engineering and environmental consulting companies, mining companies, and government organizations. Much of their work is at a field site, doing hands-on work and research.
Salary range: Approx. $108,000
 
 

Airline Pilot

If you don't mind trading a swivel office chair for a bucket cockpit seat, you can travel around the world and earn a considerable salary doing so. Still plenty of sitting to keep in mind, though.
Salary range: Approx. $129,000
 


Doctor or Surgeon

From family practice doctors to surgeons, medical doctors spend time on the floors of hospitals, clinics and operating rooms, helping patients and working alongside nurses, anesthesiologists, physicians assistants and hospital administrators. In general, far more time is spent on their feet that at a desk -- which poses its own challenges to keep in mind.
Salary range: Approx. $192,000 - $382,000, depending on area of specialty
 
 

Nurse Anesthetist

Nurse anesthetists work alongside doctors and surgeons and administer anesthesia prior to surgical procedures. Most work is done in the operating rooms of hospitals.
Salary range: Approx. $157,000
 
 
*Salary data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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