People pursue a college education for a variety of reasons. They may be going straight into college following high school graduation or heading back to school after concentrating on personal or professional responsibilities. Some may yearn for the sense of pride and accomplishment that comes with completing a college credential.  

Greater career potential is one of the most common reasons people go to college. By building skills and credentials that will bolster their resume, graduates can start a new career or elevate their status in an existing one. Government data shows that degree holders also enjoy higher earnings and are more likely to be employed than those without a degree. 

Today’s Top Careers and Recommended Education Credentials 

In 2023, U.S. News & World Report published a list outlining the 100 best jobs based on compensation, demand, work-life balance, and other criteria. Notably, many of the top careers align with The University of Texas Permian Basin’s online degree and certificate programs. These UTPB credentials can fulfill employment requirements, set the stage for a future career in the field, or improve one’s performance and potential within their current role. 

Let’s look at a few top careers from the U.S. News & World Report 100 best jobs list, the corresponding online UTPB programs, and job growth projections from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), starting with number 22 from the list: 

#22 Data Scientist 

Data scientists use various tools to collect and analyze data before providing stakeholders with recommendations for business decisions and process changes. 

Demand for data scientists is projected to expand by 36%—much faster than the average for all occupations—between 2021 and 2031. 

#15 Market Research Analyst  

Market research analysts use various data collection methods to assess consumer trends, competitor marketing, and other factors to enable their organization to market its products and/or services more effectively. 

These UT Permian Basin online programs will strengthen your skills in research and analytics, paving the way for or boosting your performance in a market research analyst career: 

Demand for market research analysts is projected to expand by 19%—much faster than the average for all occupations—between 2021 and 2031. 

#11 Lawyer 

Lawyers provide legal advice to clients and represent them during legal proceedings such as lawsuits and trials. 

Bachelor of Arts in Political Science 
This program helps you build a strong foundation for law school. 

Bachelor of Arts in English 
The curriculum for this program prepares you for the Law School Admission Test (LSAT). 

Demand for lawyers is projected to expand by 10%—faster than the average for all occupations—between 2021 and 2031. 

#7 Financial Manager 

Financial managers direct the financial affairs of an organization, producing financial reports, making investment decisions, and devising strategies to ensure the organization’s financial goals are met.  

Our AACSB-accredited College of Business offers a variety of online undergraduate and graduate degree programs that can lead to a financial management career: 

Demand for financial managers is projected to expand by 17%—much faster than the average for all occupations—between 2021 and 2031. 

#5 Information Security Analyst 

Information security analysts maintain and protect their organization’s computer networks and develop and implement disaster recovery plans for virtually any kind of contingency. 

  • Undergraduate Cyber Security Certificate  
    This 14-credit program can prepare you for a ground-level cyber security position. With further experience and training you may be able to attain the role of information security analyst.  
  • Graduate Cyber Security Certificate 
    If you’re an experienced cyber security professional with a bachelor’s degree, this 12-credit program with help you build the advanced expertise to become an information security analyst or take on other leadership roles. 

Demand for information security analysts is projected to expand by 35%—much faster than the average for all occupations—between 2021 and 2031.

#4 Physician Assistant  

Physician assistants (PAs) provide a wide range of care to patients, can perform many of the same functions as a doctor, including prescribing medications, and may assist in surgeries. PAs must earn a master’s degree or higher from an accredited medical school or a center of medicine before obtaining licensure. 

Many physician assistants start their careers as registered nurses before earning the graduate degree and certification required to work as a physician assistant. This CCNE-accredited program can put you in line for nursing leadership roles and lay the groundwork for a physician assistant job. 

Demand for physician assistants is projected to expand by 28%—much faster than the average for all occupations—between 2021 and 2031.

#3 Medical and Health Services Manager 

Often called healthcare administrators or healthcare executives, these professionals plan, lead, and support healthcare services for a medical facility, one of its departments, or a stand-alone practice. 

Demand for medical and health services managers is projected to expand by 28%—much faster than the average for all occupations—between 2021 and 2031.  

#2 Nurse Practitioner 

Nurse practitioners (NPs) also provide a broad range of services to patients and can perform many of the same functions as a doctor, in some cases including the authority to prescribe medications. NPs must have a minimum degree of Master of Science in Nursing from an accredited college to become licensed. 

To become a nurse practitioner, you must first become a registered nurse. Earning your RN to BSN can subsequently position you for greater professional responsibilities and provide a stepping stone to a master’s degree that puts nurse practitioner opportunities within reach. 

Demand for nurse practitioners is projected to expand by 40%—much faster than the average for all occupations—between 2021 and 2031.  

Advantages Shared by All These Programs 

No matter which UTPB online program you choose, you’ll enjoy these unequalled benefits: 

  • Quality  
    UT Permian Basin’s SACSCOC accreditation is your assurance that you’ll receive a high-quality education widely respected by employers and other educational institutions. 
  • Affordability  
    UTPB has some of the most competitive tuition rates among accredited universities of our stature. 
  • Flexibility  
    Delivered 100% online, our programs enable you to complete valuable credentials from just about anywhere on the planet at your own pace and empower you to maintain your professional and personal commitments. 

Reach out to us if you’d like to discuss which online program most closely aligns with your professional goals! Our advisors are here to help steer you in the right direction. 

Already know which program is right for you? Apply now!