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Some of the most in-demand jobs today didn’t even exist 15 years ago. SEO experts, blockchain analysts, and cloud computing specialists are just a few examples of jobs that no one imagined would exist until social media, cryptocurrency, and cloud storage exploded the way that they did.[1] Technology and the job market are evolving fast, leaving many to wonder what the most in-demand jobs will be in the next 15 years.

There is no way to predict with certainty what will come next, just as there was no way for a person 15 years ago to predict that social media managers would be in such high demand today. However, by examining certain trends in STEM fields, we might be able to get an idea of what to expect in the future.

As Technology Evolves, So Do the Jobs in STEM

STEM topics under great discussion today include sustainability, data security, and AI, among others, so these sectors of STEM will likely continue expanding in the future. Below are some examples of future STEM jobs that could be in high demand 15 years from now:[2]

  • Green Power Creator: These jobs will focus on harnessing sustainable energy sources.
  • Autonomous Vehicle Engineer: Self-driving cars are already starting to emerge, and engineers will need to build, test, and maintain them.  
  • Highway Controller: As more self-driving cars join our roads, it’s possible we’ll need overseers to monitor the flow of traffic remotely.
  • Drone Technician: Drones are still fairly new in the eyes of consumers, but businesses are already trying to find ways of using them for deliveries, repairs, and security.
  • Technology Tutor: Technology is evolving just as fast as it’s created, and the way we learn how to use technology is also evolving. Organizations might employ technology tutors whose job is to teach team members about new systems and programs being implemented.
  • Automated Systems Repair: Automation is becoming more and more common in some areas, and automated systems will need upkeep and repair. Things like ordering fast food, picking up prescriptions, and obtaining a license at the DMV are just a few examples of interactions that could be entirely automated.  

These are just a few examples of what could come next in STEM. Some other predictions for future STEM jobs include science ethicists, biotech engineers, and personal data managers.[3] While we can’t know for certain, it’s possible that all these jobs will become more common in time, as well as other types of jobs we can’t even imagine yet.

What STEM Jobs Will Stay Relevant?

With a constantly evolving ecosystem of jobs in the global workforce, people are worried about their skills and their jobs becoming obsolete. That’s why so many businesses are putting a stronger emphasis on hiring people with valuable skills like creativity and critical thinking that will help them evolve into new roles over time. However, there are still jobs in STEM with remarkable staying power.

For example, the number of jobs in software development, civil engineering, accounting, IT management, and statistics are expected to grow anywhere from 10 percent to 30 percent in the next few years.[4] Mathematicians, computer and information researchers, and computer support specialists are also expected to be in high demand.

It’s impossible to predict what the future will hold. However, focusing on universal skills like creativity and critical thinking and being willing to embrace lifelong learning will set you up for success, no matter what the future brings.