Women still earn $0.82 for every dollar a man makes, thanks to the still-present gender pay gap. The good news is that women are earning more than ever before and certain industries offer them the opportunity to earn higher salaries and continue to chip away at that glass ceiling.
If a high-paying job is your top priority, you may be curious about the positions in which women earn the most. We've examined the most recent Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) breakdown of median weekly earnings of full-time wage and salary workers, by occupation and gender, to arrive at the following list.
The good news is that all entries here contain a figure higher than $1,600 per week. The bad news is that the gender pay gap is still at work in these roles, with many males performing the same jobs earning substantially more.
- Median weekly earnings for women: $2,160
- Number of women in the occupation: 134,000
People depend on pharmacists to accurately fill their prescriptions and advise on proper usage. Other duties include giving vaccinations, keeping detailed records, and dealing with insurance companies.
While women make up more than 55% of the total number of pharmacists and post an impressive salary, they still, on average, bring home $126 per week less than their male counterparts. Another downside of the field: The BLS projects employment of pharmacists to decline 3% between 2019-2029.
- Median weekly earnings for women: $2,051
- Number of women in the occupation: 363,000
Companies rely on top executives to guide organizations to success. The role requires a top-notch ability to lead, make decisions, communicate, and problem-solve. The pay is high, but so usually are the hours and stress.
Men make up more than two-thirds of all CEOs. With a median weekly paycheck of $2,712, they far out-earn female colleagues.
- Median weekly earnings for women: $1,910
- Number of women in the occupation: 187,000
The high compensation for this job comes as no surprise as business operations rely increasingly on technology. Titles in this field include chief information officer, chief technology officer, information technology (IT) director, and IT security manager.
Of the 703,000 people employed as computer and information systems managers, a hefty 516,000 are men. Job prospects for all qualified candidates look good, as the BLS projects employment growth of 10% between 2019-2029.
- Median weekly earnings for women: $1,905
- Number of women in the occupation: 313,000
After completing post-secondary education of roughly 11-15 years (four for a bachelor's degree, four for medical school, and three to seven for an internship/residency), a substantial paycheck only seems fair. Their dedication to the care and treatment of others also lands physicians another accolade — top spot on the global list of most respected professions.
Times have changed since 1849 when Elizabeth Blackwell became the first woman in the U.S. to earn an M.D. In 2019, women outnumbered men at U.S. medical schools for the first time ever. Hopefully, the future may bring a decrease in the gender wage gap. The median weekly earnings for male doctors is about $400 more than for females.
- Median weekly earnings for women: $1,894
- Number of women in the occupation: 67,000
As vital members of medical teams, PAs take on responsibilities such as examining patients, diagnosing conditions, ordering tests, and monitoring patient progress. They also frequently educate people about ways to achieve better health or how to deal with their medical condition.
Talk about a career with prospects! The BLS projects employment of physician assistants to grow a healthy 31% between 2019-2029. The aging of baby boomers, an increasing number of people with health insurance, and the need to treat people with chronic conditions are top factors contributing to this expected demand.
- Median weekly earnings for women: $1,867
- Number of women in the occupation: 145,000
Like PAs, nurse practitioners ease some of the demands placed on the U.S. health care system. Services range from assessing patients and creating treatment plans to advising on lifestyle changes. Nurse practitioners may work in a primary care setting or train to care for certain types of patients such as older people, children, or individuals with mental health issues.
Aspiring NPs face an excellent job market with projected employment growth of 52% between 2019-2029. Perhaps men will fill some of this demand. Women already make up nearly 85% of current nurse practitioners!
- Median weekly earnings for women: $1,728
- Number of women in the occupation: 322,000
The BLS calls software developers "the creative minds behind computer programs." They design software to fulfill the needs of businesses and consumers, fix problems that arise, and look for ways to improve upon operation and ease of usage. We witness their work every day in our technology-rich lives.
Since the modern world depends so heavily on software, the BLS projects employment of software developers to grow 22% between 2019-2029. Increased efforts to attract women to STEM careers may result in boosting the number of female software developers. At present, men outnumber women in the occupation by well over a million.
- Median weekly earnings for women: $1,665
- Number of women in the occupation: 351,000
Individuals, businesses, and the government all depend on lawyers for legal counsel and representation. BLS projections show employment growth of 4% between 2019-2029, about as fast as the average for all occupations.
In 2019, women made up over 53% of all students in ABA-approved law schools. While such a stat proves encouraging for balancing the number of male versus female lawyers in the future, women graduates face the prospect of earning less. Currently, the median weekly income for female lawyers is $659 less than that of males. Where's equality and justice for all?!