Skip to main content

Main Area

Main

100 least popular jobs in America

1/
Pixabay

100 least popular jobs in America

Spend enough time watching the Discovery Channel and you’ll eventually run into Mike Rowe doing one stomach-churning task after the other on the hit TV show “Dirty Jobs.” The Baltimore-born host is also known for his CNN series “Somebody’s Gotta Do It,” whose title underscores the fact that some jobs are so menial and unsavory that practically nobody does them (though somebody does have to, one way or another).

The reasons a certain field might not contain very many many professionals vary widely. Certain positions are only held by a small number due to their unpleasant nature, but the fact that the 100 least popular jobs in America are collectively held by only 6,360 individuals means that some careers are only attainable in particular geographic locations, with an extensive education or with a set of unteachable interpersonal skills.

Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Stacker listed the 100 least popular jobs in America by total engagement. Every position’s number of total workers in the United States is listed alongside its average annual wage and average hourly wage, where each of those figures is available.

Read on to see if you hold one of the least popular jobs in the nation.

RELATED: 100 most popular jobs in America

2/
MMCedu // Wikicommons

#100. Materials Scientists

Total workers in 2017: 7,470
Average annual wage: $101,910
Average hourly wage: $48.99

3/
Biha // Wikicommons

#99. Hearing Aid Specialists

Total workers in 2017: 7,380
Average annual wage: $57,030
Average hourly wage: $27.42

4/
Max Pixel

#98. Architecture Teachers, Postsecondary

Total workers in 2017: 7,280
Average annual wage: $91,000
Average hourly wage: Not available

5/
Pixabay

#97. Shoe and Leather Workers and Repairers

Total workers in 2017: 7,180
Average annual wage: $27,550
Average hourly wage: $13.25

6/
Bill Shrout // Wikicommons

#96. Life Scientists, All Other

Total workers in 2017: 7,120
Average annual wage: $82,270
Average hourly wage: $39.55

7/
YCC Volunteers // Wikicommons

#95. Forest and Conservation Workers

Total workers in 2017: 7,080
Average annual wage: $31,320
Average hourly wage: $15.06

8/
Regan Vercruysse // Wikicommons

#94. Artists and Related Workers, All Other

Total workers in 2017: 7,010
Average annual wage: $66,590
Average hourly wage: $32.01

9/
Mark Wolfe // Wikicommons

#93. Traffic Technicians

Total workers in 2017: 6,980
Average annual wage: $49,290
Average hourly wage: $23.70

10/
Jennifer Brugman // U.S. Air Force

#92. Epidemiologists

Total workers in 2017: 6,870
Average annual wage: $76,230
Average hourly wage: $36.65

11/
Pixabay

#91. Nuclear Technicians

Total workers in 2017: 6,850
Average annual wage: $80,000
Average hourly wage: $38.46

12/
Suzanne M. Day // Wikicommons

#90. Nurse Midwives

Total workers in 2017: 6,530
Average annual wage: $103,640
Average hourly wage: $49.83

13/
Pixabay

#89. Woodworkers, All Other

Total workers in 2017: 6,490
Average annual wage: $33,650
Average hourly wage: $16.18

14/
Jorge Royan // Wikicommons

#88. Costume Attendants

Total workers in 2017: 6,430
Average annual wage: $47,700
Average hourly wage: $22.93

15/
Pixabay

#87. Correspondence Clerks

Total workers in 2017: 6,370
Average annual wage: $38,100
Average hourly wage: $18.32

16/
U.S. Geological Survey // Wikicommons

#86. Hydrologists

Total workers in 2017: 6,350
Average annual wage: $84,290
Average hourly wage: $40.53

17/
World Travel & Tourism Council // Wikicommons

#85. Political Scientists

Total workers in 2017: 6,320
Average annual wage: $112,030
Average hourly wage: $53.86

18/
Larissa Greatwood // U.S. Air Force

#84. Telephone Operators

Total workers in 2017: 6,310
Average annual wage: $38,410
Average hourly wage: $18.47

19/
Terri Paden // U.S. Air Force

#83. Exercise Physiologists

Total workers in 2017: 6,300
Average annual wage: $54,730
Average hourly wage: $26.31

20/
Dmeranda // Wikicommons

#82. Sewers, Hand

Total workers in 2017: 6,190
Average annual wage: $27,540
Average hourly wage: $13.24

21/
Pixabay

#81. Mining and Geological Engineers, Including Mining Safety Engineers

Total workers in 2017: 6,150
Average annual wage: $103,710
Average hourly wage: $49.86

22/
Pixabay

#80. Rail Yard Engineers, Dinkey Operators, and Hostlers

Total workers in 2017: 6,140
Average annual wage: $51,930
Average hourly wage: $24.97

23/
Colin Groves // Wikicommons

#79. Anthropologists and Archeologists

Total workers in 2017: 6,120
Average annual wage: $66,330
Average hourly wage: $31.89

24/
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau // Wikicommons

#78. Arbitrators, Mediators, and Conciliators

Total workers in 2017: 6,110
Average annual wage: $73,020
Average hourly wage: $35.11

25/
Eric Lockwood // U.S. Navy

#77. Archivists

Total workers in 2017: 6,080
Average annual wage: $55,470
Average hourly wage: $26.67

26/
Darla Leslie/USFWS // flickr

#76. Fish and Game Wardens

Total workers in 2017: 6,020
Average annual wage: $58,570
Average hourly wage: $28.16

27/
Acroterion // Wikicommons

#75. Nuclear Power Reactor Operators

Total workers in 2017: 6,010
Average annual wage: $94,350
Average hourly wage: $45.36

28/
Mark Wyatt // U.S. Air Force

#74. Environmental Science Teachers, Postsecondary

Total workers in 2017: 5,990
Average annual wage: $87,660
Average hourly wage: Not available

29/
U.S. Air Force

#73. Explosives Workers, Ordnance Handling Experts, and Blasters

Total workers in 2017: 5,850
Average annual wage: $52,790
Average hourly wage: $25.38

30/
David Owsianka // U.S. Airforce

#72. Model Makers, Metal and Plastic

Total workers in 2017: 5,820
Average annual wage: $54,820
Average hourly wage: $26.35

31/
Tulane Public Relations // Wikicommons

#71. Anthropology and Archeology Teachers, Postsecondary

Total workers in 2017: 5,770
Average annual wage: $93,500
Average hourly wage: Not available

32/
U.S. Department of State // Flickr

#70. Broadcast News Analysts

Total workers in 2017: 5,700
Average annual wage: $88,250
Average hourly wage: $42.43

33/
William Hook // flickr

#69. Motion Picture Projectionists

Total workers in 2017: 5,700
Average annual wage: $24,790
Average hourly wage: $11.92

34/
Elvert Barnes // flickr

#68. Transit and Railroad Police

Total workers in 2017: 5,520
Average annual wage: $71,280
Average hourly wage: $34.27

35/
National Archives // Wikicommons

#67. Fallers

Total workers in 2017: 5,420
Average annual wage: $46,930
Average hourly wage: $22.56

36/
Eickhoff Engine // Wikicommons

#66. Mine Cutting and Channeling Machine Operators

Total workers in 2017: 5,400
Average annual wage: $52,360
Average hourly wage: $25.17

37/
Matthäus Wander // Wikicommons

#65. Entertainment Attendants and Related Workers, All Other

Total workers in 2017: 5,390
Average annual wage: $29,010
Average hourly wage: $13.95

38/
The Huntington // Flickr

#64. Choreographers

Total workers in 2017: 5,310
Average annual wage: $52,970
Average hourly wage: $25.47

39/
Joevilliers // Wikicommons

#63. Agricultural Workers, All Other

Total workers in 2017: 5,210
Average annual wage: $35,910
Average hourly wage: $17.27

40/
Liliana Moreno // U.S. Air Force

#62. Orthodontists

Total workers in 2017: 5,080
Average annual wage: $229,380
Average hourly wage: $110.28

41/
Pixabay

#61. Library Science Teachers, Postsecondary

Total workers in 2017: 5,010
Average annual wage: $73,680
Average hourly wage: Not available

42/
Divulgação Petrobras // Wikicommons

#60. Extraction Workers, All Other

Total workers in 2017: 4,970
Average annual wage: $50,690
Average hourly wage: $24.37

43/
Pixabay

#59. Fabric and Apparel Patternmakers

Total workers in 2017: 4,810
Average annual wage: $49,690
Average hourly wage: $23.89

44/
Ryan G. Wilbe // Wikicommons

#58. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons

Total workers in 2017: 4,800
Average annual wage: $242,740
Average hourly wage: $116.70

45/
Tulane Public Relations // Wikicommons

#57. Craft Artists

Total workers in 2017: 4,730
Average annual wage: $41,180
Average hourly wage: $19.80

46/
MTA New York City Transit // Wikicommons

#56. Rail Transportation Workers, All Other

Total workers in 2017: 4,690
Average annual wage: $59,950
Average hourly wage: $28.82

47/
USDA // Wikicommons

#55. Farmers, Ranchers, and Other Agricultural Managers

Total workers in 2017: 4,610
Average annual wage: $80,320
Average hourly wage: $38.62

48/
Amber Carter // U.S. Air Force

#54. Dentists, All Other Specialists

Total workers in 2017: 4,590
Average annual wage: $199,980
Average hourly wage: $96.15

49/
Ppntori // Wikicommons

#53. Gaming Managers

Total workers in 2017: 4,420
Average annual wage: $83,460
Average hourly wage: $40.12

50/
Lance Cheung // U.S. Airforce

#52. Wind Turbine Service Technicians

Total workers in 2017: 4,390
Average annual wage: $56,680
Average hourly wage: $27.25

51/
Stug.stug // Wikicommons

#51. Floor Sanders and Finishers

Total workers in 2017: 4,320
Average annual wage: $39,260
Average hourly wage: $18.87

52/
Pixabay

#50. Rock Splitters, Quarry

Total workers in 2017: 4,310
Average annual wage: $36,050
Average hourly wage: $17.33

53/
Kates Lonles // Flickr

#49. Embalmers

Total workers in 2017: 4,200
Average annual wage: $45,040
Average hourly wage: $21.65

54/
Scott Jackson // U.S. Airforce

#48. Geography Teachers, Postsecondary

Total workers in 2017: 3,980
Average annual wage: $87,810
Average hourly wage: Not available

55/
AlfvanBeem // Wikicommons

#47. Pile-Driver Operators

Total workers in 2017: 3,710
Average annual wage: $63,770
Average hourly wage: $30.66

56/
Pixabay

#46. Models

Total workers in 2017: 3,710
Average annual wage: $31,870
Average hourly wage: $15.32

57/
Pixabay

#45. Camera and Photographic Equipment Repairers

Total workers in 2017: 3,650
Average annual wage: $42,510
Average hourly wage: $20.44

58/
Tiger635 // Wikicommons

#44. Gas Compressor and Gas Pumping Station Operators

Total workers in 2017: 3,560
Average annual wage: $61,960
Average hourly wage: $29.79

59/
Charlie Brewer // Wikicommons

#43. Makeup Artists, Theatrical and Performance

Total workers in 2017: 3,540
Average annual wage: $69,310
Average hourly wage: $33.32

60/
Nina Hale // Wikicommons

#42. Shoe Machine Operators and Tenders

Total workers in 2017: 3,500
Average annual wage: $27,530
Average hourly wage: $13.23

61/
ENERGY.GOV // Wikicommons

#41. Roof Bolters, Mining

Total workers in 2017: 3,410
Average annual wage: $59,310
Average hourly wage: $28.52

62/
Rae Perry // U.S. Airforce

#40. Logging Workers, All Other

Total workers in 2017: 3,290
Average annual wage: $40,730
Average hourly wage: $19.58

63/
Andrew McKaskle // Wikicommons

#39. Commercial Divers

Total workers in 2017: 3,280
Average annual wage: $55,270
Average hourly wage: $26.57

64/
Marcin Wichary // Wikicommons

#38. Bridge and Lock Tenders

Total workers in 2017: 3,240
Average annual wage: $47,280
Average hourly wage: $22.73

65/
OKFoundryCompany// Flickr

#37. Patternmakers, Metal and Plastic

Total workers in 2017: 3,200
Average annual wage: $45,880
Average hourly wage: $22.06

66/
Pixabay

#36. Hoist and Winch Operators

Total workers in 2017: 3,080
Average annual wage: $54,910
Average hourly wage: $26.40

67/
USCG // Flickr

#35. Historians

Total workers in 2017: 3,060
Average annual wage: $64,220
Average hourly wage: $30.88

68/
Pixabay

#34. Log Graders and Scalers

Total workers in 2017: 3,010
Average annual wage: $38,710
Average hourly wage: $18.61

69/
Pixabay

#33. Mining Machine Operators, All Other

Total workers in 2017: 2,840
Average annual wage: $50,670
Average hourly wage: $24.36

70/
Pilot Theatre // Flickr

#32. Sociologists

Total workers in 2017: 2,770
Average annual wage: $86,130
Average hourly wage: $41.41

71/
Amanda Bicknell // Flickr

#31. Manufactured Building and Mobile Home Installers

Total workers in 2017: 2,750
Average annual wage: $31,810
Average hourly wage: $15.29

72/
Mathematical Association of America // Flickr

#30. Mathematicians

Total workers in 2017: 2,730
Average annual wage: $104,700
Average hourly wage: $50.33

73/
Rictor Norton & David Allen // Flickr

#29. Paperhangers

Total workers in 2017: 2,710
Average annual wage: $40,930
Average hourly wage: $19.68

74/
Kemberly Groue // U.S. Air Force

#28. Genetic Counselors

Total workers in 2017: 2,660
Average annual wage: $78,130
Average hourly wage: $37.56

75/
U.S. Navy // Wikicommons

#27. Terrazzo Workers and Finishers

Total workers in 2017: 2,630
Average annual wage: $45,520
Average hourly wage: $21.89

76/
Alexandra Singer // U.S. Air Force

#26. Home Economics Teachers, Postsecondary

Total workers in 2017: 2,580
Average annual wage: $77,220
Average hourly wage: Not available

77/
Pixabay

#25. Animal Scientists

Total workers in 2017: 2,550
Average annual wage: $68,840
Average hourly wage: $33.10

78/
California National Guard // Flickr

#24. Motorboat Operators

Total workers in 2017: 2,510
Average annual wage: $45,870
Average hourly wage: $22.05

79/
Kaupo Kikkas // Wikicommons

#23. Loading Machine Operators, Underground Mining

Total workers in 2017: 2,340
Average annual wage: $51,780
Average hourly wage: $24.89

80/
Doug Coldwell // Wikicommons

#22. Watch Repairers

Total workers in 2017: 2,130
Average annual wage: $39,530
Average hourly wage: $19.01

81/
Grand Canyon National Park // Flickr

#21. Astronomers

Total workers in 2017: 2,020
Average annual wage: $109,560
Average hourly wage: $52.67

82/
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service // Flickr

#20. Forestry and Conservation Science Teachers, Postsecondary

Total workers in 2017: 2,000
Average annual wage: $93,200
Average hourly wage: Not available

83/
sirdle // Flickr

#19. Communications Equipment Operators, All Other

Total workers in 2017: 1,980
Average annual wage: $42,910
Average hourly wage: $20.63

84/
Pixabay

#18. Forest Fire Inspectors and Prevention Specialists

Total workers in 2017: 1,960
Average annual wage: $45,990
Average hourly wage: $22.11

85/
Pixabay

#17. Animal Breeders

Total workers in 2017: 1,800
Average annual wage: $43,450
Average hourly wage: $20.89

86/
Jialiang Gao // Wikicommons

#16. Agricultural Engineers

Total workers in 2017: 1,770
Average annual wage: $77,970
Average hourly wage: $37.49

87/
Polybert49 // Flickr

#15. Mine Shuttle Car Operators

Total workers in 2017: 1,550
Average annual wage: $56,510
Average hourly wage: $27.17

88/
Dominicus Johannes Bergsma // Wikicommons

#14. Dredge Operators

Total workers in 2017: 1,410
Average annual wage: $46,340
Average hourly wage: $22.28

89/
Jonathan Billinger // Wikicommons

#13. Geographers

Total workers in 2017: 1,400
Average annual wage: $76,790
Average hourly wage: $36.92

90/
Paragon Kilns // Flickr

#12. Refractory Materials Repairers, Except Brickmasons

Total workers in 2017: 1,310
Average annual wage: $50,080
Average hourly wage: $24.08

91/
Pixabay

#11. Industrial-Organizational Psychologists

Total workers in 2017: 920
Average annual wage: $102,530
Average hourly wage: $49.29

92/
EMBT Studio // Flickr

#10. Model Makers, Wood

Total workers in 2017: 850
Average annual wage: $52,000
Average hourly wage: $25.00

93/
Alex Proimos // Wikicommons

#9. Farm Labor Contractors

Total workers in 2017: 780
Average annual wage: $48,890
Average hourly wage: $23.50

94/
OKFoundryCompany // Flickr

#8. Patternmakers, Wood

Total workers in 2017: 770
Average annual wage: $51,760
Average hourly wage: $24.88

95/
Meagan Schutter // Wikicommons

#7. Radio Operators

Total workers in 2017: 770
Average annual wage: $44,490
Average hourly wage: $21.39

96/
Wikijunkie // Wikicommons

#6. Timing Device Assemblers and Adjusters

Total workers in 2017: 680
Average annual wage: $37,310
Average hourly wage: $17.94

97/
Pixabay

#5. Locomotive Firers

Total workers in 2017: 670
Average annual wage: $62,220
Average hourly wage: $29.91

98/
James Brooks // Flickr

#4. Fishers and Related Fishing Workers

Total workers in 2017: 520
Average annual wage: $31,190
Average hourly wage: $15.00

99/
DoD News // Flickr

#3. Cooks, Private Household

Total workers in 2017: 500
Average annual wage: $42,990
Average hourly wage: $20.67

100/
Bin im Garten // Wikicommons

#2. Prosthodontists

Total workers in 2017: 430
Average annual wage: $196,960
Average hourly wage: $94.69

101/
Elizabeth Bake // U.S. Air Force

#1. Fabric Menders, Except Garment

Total workers in 2017: 390
Average annual wage: $29,530
Average hourly wage: $14.20

2018 All rights reserved.