5 Unique Careers to Inspire Your Students

“What do you want to be when you grow up?” is a question everyone hears at one point in their lives. Choosing a job, much less a career, can be a daunting task and most of us end up in a job out of necessity rather than an affinity for that job. What if you could find a cool and unique job that you also like? 

Many have foregone the traditional careers and forged new paths by taking on jobs and careers most people wouldn’t consider. These can include professions like Audiologists who asses and treat people with hearing disorders, or Hydrologists who study water quality or how water moves through the earth’s crust, and many more unique career paths. So, let’s have look at some other jobs that might just inspire you.

Certified Ethical Hacker

Becoming a Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) demands the same skills as a malicious hacker, however, you’ll be working with the law to catch criminals, or expose flaws in companies’ software to make them more secure. The demand for cybersecurity professionals and ethical hackers is at an all-time high. A report from the Global Cyber Security Center in collaboration with the University of Oxford details how there is a shortage of 2,93 million cybersecurity professionals. The report predicts the gap will widen to 3.5 million by 2021. A Maryville University guide to the cybersecurity industry shows that due to the sheer demand for cybersecurity specialists, they now command more than $6,500 per year on average, compared to other IT workers. With average yearly salaries approximately $99,000, this might just be the rewarding career path you’re looking for.

Intelligence Analyst

When it comes to jobs with a certain cool factor, intelligence analysts for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is right up there. The CIA is the government agency responsible for collecting and disseminating foreign intelligence. It entails working with classified information and collecting intelligence on anything from Chinese and Russian naval forces to the latest terror groups in the Middle East. In this regard, there are many career paths available for qualified individuals who possess strong communication and problem-solving skills. Some of the areas of intelligence analysis include counterintelligence threat analyst, political analyst and economic analyst, amongst others. The salary range varies between $51,000 to 76,000 and up.

Nurse Midwife

A certified nurse-midwife (CNM) provides primary healthcare centered on women and their families, but their primary function is to give care and counseling during pre-conception, pregnancy and postpartum. While most people believe that midwives only deal with childbirth, Nurse Journal explains that CNMs only spend 10% of their work time dealing with childbirth, while the rest is spent working with patients for preventive care. Being a CNM is a tireless, yet, rewarding job and you can expect an annual salary in the range of $70,000 to upwards of $150,000, depending on location and institution. 


If you’ve always been interested in art and history and have a desire to educate and preserve them for future generations, a career as a curator might pique your interest. Museum curators manage collections of works of art and artifacts, historical or scientific items and are responsible for the acquisition of new works of art. Apart from requiring a passion for history and art, a curator must have a keen eye for detail, strong communication and writing skills, and the ability to complete academic research. Curators work in many capacities, with The Art Career Project describing how 37% of curators work in museums, galleries or historical sites, while the rest work in government, education, and other institutions. You can expect an average pay of $46,000, going to as high as $145,000.


Ecologists have the important role of solving environmental problems, plan habitat management and manage environmental restoration projects. As an ecologist, you’ll have a duty to preserve the environment and increase people’s understanding of the relationships between various ecosystems and all that affects them to protect them. Most importantly, ecologists help us better understand and minimize the effects of our activities on the planet and provide the tools and knowledge to protect it. Ecologists can be found in diverse roles from environmental consultants for various development projects to research at colleges and universities and advisors to policymakers. Average salaries for ecologists vary by state and average around $67,000. If you ever want to be an ecologist, the District of Columbia posts the highest median salary at over $109,000.