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The Rarest Jobs In America

Updated September 15, 2017 125.0k views10 items

These are the top ten rarest jobs in America. These careers employ less than 4,000 people nationwide. From the top sciences like astronomer and mathematician to wood pattern maker, these jobs will make you stop and say "wow, somebody does that for a living?" If you want to embark on one of these uncommon careers, you'll definitely have some learning to do. The rarest occupations in the country (and the world, for that matter) aren't easy. You'll probably have to get some special training before you get to give these a go.

The best part about some of these rare careers and professions? They can pull in some major dough. Take airplane crop-dusters: the stats are hard to find because they usually freelance, but those guys can make anywhere from $80,000 to $100,000 per year. Then there's underwater welders who not only do they pull down $80-100k, they also use fire....underwater!

What are rare jobs? If you think about it, some of the highly sought after gigs, like being a pro referee to bei a geographer, are pretty rare.
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    Wood Pattern Maker

    Photo: Metaweb / CC-BY
    The patterns you see in wood aren't by accident, that is someone's job. 1,540 people are currently employed as a wood pattern maker. These people Plan, lay out, and construct wooden unit or sectional patterns used in forming sand molds for castings. They have an average salary of $32,190 a year.
  • Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain

    These guys use the laws of physics and mathematics to learn about the nature of matter and energy throughout the universe, which includes the sun, moon, planets, stars, and galaxies. Astronomers apply their knowledge to solve problems in navigation, space flight, and satellite communications. They also develop the instruments and techniques needed to observe and collect astronomical data.

    They mostly work in colleges and universities where they do research and teach astronomy. Some work in observatories, planetariums, and museums where they help to explain what is known about the universe to the public. Others are employed by government agencies, such as the U.S. Naval Observatory or the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). A few work for companies in the aerospace industry.

    There are only 1,430 people employed in this profession and they make an average salary of $104,720. Not too shabby for a science nerd.

    Read more: Astronomer Job Description, Career as an Astronomer, Salary, Employment - Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job -
  • 3


    Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain

    This job is all about studying, you study nature and use of areas of earth's surface, relating and interpreting interactions of physical and cultural phenomena, human activities within given area, such as ethnic distribution, economic activity, and political organization.

    You do research on physical and climatic aspects of area or region, making direct observation of landforms, climates, soils, plants, and animals within area under study and incorporating available knowledge from related scientific fields, such as physics, geology, oceanography, meteorology, and biology.

    Acts as adviser or consultant to governments and international organizations on subjects, such as economic exploitation of regions and determination of ethnic and natural boundaries between nations or administrative areas. May use surveying equipment or meteorological instruments. May construct and interpret maps, graphs, and diagrams. May specialize in particular branch of cultural geography, such as economic, political, urban, social, or historical geography.

    There are only 960 people employed as geographers, with an average salary of $71,470.
  • Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain

    This is someone whose primary area of study is the field of mathematics, they are concerned with quantity, structure, space, and change. Scientists who research other fields, such as theoretical physics, are also considered mathematicians if their research provides insights into mathematics. But mathematicians may also provide insights into other fields of research—these people are known as applied mathematicians.

    There are only about 2,840 people currently employed as mathematicians and they earn an average salary of $86,780.