Recently, CNNMoney.com published a list of 50 best jobs in America. I am glad that among the 50 jobs there were more than 10 jobs in the field of Computer Science; my field. The list ranked the jobs according to the high demands of these skills. However, I think it is misleading to call this list “best jobs in America” it should be called “highly demanded jobs in America”. Easily finding a job in one’s field doesn’t rank it among the best jobs. One common drawback among the 50 listed jobs is long hours. If you work 60 or 80 hours a week do you consider yourself having the best job? I doubt it. It is common to hear from someone working long hours that he/she wishes that they don’t work after 5 pm, or that they don’t have to bring their work to home.
Since I am working on my PhD in Computer Science my future plan is to work as a college professor. According to this list, College Professor job is ranked no. 3. People who are not in the academia may not know that the first 6 years of college professors, who are in a tenure track in American universities, are the most stressful and demanding. I have seen newly appointed college professors in my department come as early as 7 am and not leave before 12 am. Within his first 6 years a college professor, working in a reputable American university, should publish a descent research to be reappointed as an Associate Professor otherwise, the university will fire him. Accordingly, he should look for another less ranked university and restart his tenure track again.
The college professor was just an example of how stressful it is being among the 50 “best” jobs in America. Yes, it is good to easily find a job and yes it is even better if this job can provide a descent salary. Nevertheless, I don’t think they fall under the category of best jobs. If one follows the business trend not his passion toward what he likes to do the rest of his life then I doubt this person will consider his job to be the best job. There is a reason why almost everyone complains about his/her work.
After working as a Software Developer for a while I found that being confined in a cubical wasn’t my best job so I decided to pursue my study to be a researcher or a college professor. I am glad that I found my passion in teaching. Yet, sometimes during my very low moments I wonder how my life would be if my parents encouraged my love of tools and carpentry skills when I was a kid. Would I be the best carpenter Jordanians ever heard of?
See the full list of best jobs in america here.