Median Salary: $81,058
Salary Growth (2009–2015): +6%
Total Employees: 23,000
Change in Employees (2009–2015): +94%
Specialized engineers tend to work in, relatively obscure fields—think agriculture, biomedicine, physics, and food processing. They develop machinery, systems, and processes.
A bachelor’s degree in the relevant specialized field is a must, and an additional master’s degree may also be required. You must also obtain a Professional Engineer (P.Eng.) license.
With a median salary of around $81,000, these jobs are highly competitive with others in the engineering field. If you’re looking to specialize, it might be worth going into petroleum engineering—where the salaries are almost $25,000 higher—instead.
There aren’t many new job openings for specialized engineers, with an average annual employment growth rate of only 0.5% from 2014 to 2018. However, this is a relatively small field with many specialized categories, so qualified candidates have a good chance of landing a high-paying position.