3 Career Sectors Worth Considering in Tucson, Arizona
With abundant sunshine, a low cost of living, and an eclectic mix of cultures, Tucson is a city that has a lot going for it. In fact, the region's unique blend of affordability and opportunity has led to it being ranked as one of the best U.S. cities for millennials.1 And with employment in the metro area expected to grow 14 percent between 2014 and 2024, there's even more reason to begin your career in this part of southern Arizona.2
Three job sectors with a bright future in Tucson include:
1. Skilled Trades
The building trades are booming in Tucson. Construction employment in the region grew more than seven percent just between February 2017 and February 2018.3 But even that wasn't enough to keep up with demand: Three-quarters of Arizona contractors surveyed in 2017 said they were struggling to fill available craft positions. Heavy equipment operators, laborers, and mechanics were all in short supply.4
And the opportunities should continue to emerge. The Tucson construction sector is expected to grow a staggering 34 percent between 2014 and 2024, which means that more than 5,100 new jobs for qualified tradespeople will likely open up during that time period.2
Here are just a few careers in the trades that are expected to see much-faster-than-average growth in Tucson between 2014 and 2024. (The percentage represents the projected rate of job growth; earnings figures are average salaries as of May 2018.)2, 5
- Brickmasons and blockmasons—52.8 percent / $44,260
- HVAC mechanics and installers—38.5 percent / $45,930
- Electricians—35.5 percent / $44,240
- Carpenters—28.6 percent / $36,400
- Plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters—27.9 percent / $45,140
- Structural iron and steel workers—25.4 percent / $44,700
2. Health Services
Looking after people's health and well-being is a growing industry in Tucson, particularly as the local population gets older and requires more care. By 2024, more than 20 percent of the residents of Pima County could be over 65. So it's no surprise that the health care sector is set to expand rapidly in the coming years. In fact, employment in Tucson hospitals is expected to grow by 25 percent between 2014 and 2024. And nursing and residential care facilities could support a 31-percent increase in the number of jobs.2
Have a look at the projected rates of job growth for the following health care careers, along with their average salaries:2, 5
- Cardiovascular technologists and technicians—27.9 percent / $61,790
- Physical therapist assistants—25.6 percent / $38,860
- Diagnostic medical sonographers—25.1 percent / $72,940
- Medical records and health information technicians—18.9 percent / $39,390
- Pharmacy technicians—18.3 percent / $36,340
- Medical assistants—18.1 percent / $31,280
- Massage therapists—14.8 percent / $43,270
3. Aerospace and Aviation
Aerospace manufacturing is a big part of Tucson's economy, employing more than 25,000 people in areas ranging from research and development to assembly and distribution.6 Space-related manufacturers like Universal Avionics, Vector Launch, and World View Enterprises are all headquartered here. The region is also home to Bombardier's largest aircraft service center, which occupies close to a million square feet and employs more than 900 local residents.7
The Tucson metro area added 600 aerospace manufacturing jobs just between March 2017 and March 2018, a growth rate of 5.1 percent.8 With the right training, you can take advantage of expanding opportunities in careers like these:2, 5
- Transportation equipment painters—20.2 percent / $48,960
- Electrical and electronics engineering technicians—16.1 percent / $58,360
- Assemblers and fabricators—14.5 percent / $31,200
- Avionics technicians—12.9 percent / $66,690
Chart a New Course
Make this the day you take control of your future. Tucson trade schools and career colleges are ready to help you reach your goals. So look through the programs above or type your zip code into the school finder below to discover training options close to where you live!
1 Money, "Best Cities for Millennials," website last visited on April 20, 2018.
2 Arizona Labor Statistics, Office of Economic Opportunity, website last visited on April 20, 2018.
3 Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, "Economy at a Glance: Tucson, AZ," website last visited on April 20, 2018.
4 Associated General Contractors of America, "2017 Workforce Survey Results: Arizona Results," website last visited on April 20, 2018.
5 Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, website last visited on May 30, 2019.
6 Sun Corridor Inc. "Aerospace & Defense," website last visited on April 20, 2018.
7 Bombardier, "Bombardier Business Aircraft Inaugurates Newly Expanded Interior Facility in Tucson," website last visited on April 20, 2018.
8 TucsonSentinel.com, "Arizona added 1,000 manufacturing jobs over the past month," website last visited on April 20, 2018.