The world is witnessing a drastic shift in nature of jobs as technological advancements are creating new opportunities by either replacing existing jobs or changing their nature. Knowledge-based economies are ruling the world while developing countries like Pakistan still lag behind in their acceptance of this change, leading to a huge gap in technical human resource. Its time to include the topic of Emerging Professions In Pakistan should be part of our debates as well.
Rising unemployment in Pakistan – An opportunity to bring a shift in obsolete approach to education
In a recently published report, Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) indicated a declining trend in employment in Pakistan over the past decade from 5.1% in 2007 to 5.7% in 2018. The gravity of these stats is amplified when analyzed in conjunction with number of graduates that Pakistan produces every year. According to recent figures by Higher Education Commission (HEC), Pakistan produces around half a million university graduates every year and with increasing number of educational institutes, this number is rising. However, the world is changing drastically and the scope of education is also shifting towards newer disciplines and advanced technologies. While declining employment rates portray a glooming picture for graduating youth of Pakistan, it also provides a huge opportunity for educationists, government and younger generation to explore emerging Professions In Pakistan that developed world has already approached.
Till date, the focus of Pakistani students remain on traditional ‘high paid’, ‘respectable’ and ‘family approved’ professions like medical, engineering and business administration, this article, therefore, highlights careers that have a great potential in decades to come and are based on innovation and entrepreneurial approach. Fortunately, the current government of Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf (PTI) is focused on shifting the paradigm of traditional education system in Pakistan from ‘content mastery’ to ‘conceptual knowledge’. The Federal Minster for Science and Technology, Fawad Chaudhry, on various occasions, has reiterated government’s stance to make Pakistan a knowledge-based economy with main focus on science and technology. Considered that this vision is conceptualized in future, the new job markets in Pakistan will be conducive to the suggested careers in future.
5 Top High Paying Emerging Jobs
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in 2019 published a list of 30 high-paying jobs that are expected to stay relevant for coming decades. Here is a list of some of the emerging professions in Pakistan that are easily approachable to Pakistani students and currently trending as emerging jobs in world:
1- Applications Software Developers
With substantial dependence of businesses on technology, the scope of applications software development is never ending. There are more students enrolling in software engineering globally than ever before due to ever changing technology and constant need for upgradation of applications software used by businesses. Another factor that makes this field approachable is educational background requirement for aspiring developers. A person with zero computing background can opt for any programming language like PhP, Python or Java based on their preference and skills and build on these to become software developers. Adopting applications software development as career has an added advantage of less reliance on economic conditions, which is specifically relevant in ever turbulent economy of Pakistan. Even if you are unable to find a good position in an established firm, applications developers can have great income from freelance projects. According to BLS, the average income for applications developer is more than $100,000 yearly. Several applications and website development companies that we come across in Pakistan are making huge profits even with small setups. As for education and training in applications software, you don’t need a full degree to become a software developer and there is a wide range of international and national educational institutes and companies that offer several diplomas in this field at affordable fee rates.
2- Data Science and Analytics
Data science and analytics is one of the few disciplines that has gained extraordinary attention during past few years and is considered the future of software domain of businesses. IBM predicts that the jobs for data scientists will raise to millions after 2020 as with heavy influx of data, companies will be forever in need of data scientists and analytics to sort the big data and smoothen company functions. Universities like FAST, NUST, Szabist and several others in Pakistan are offering MS programs in Data Sciences while LUMS, IBA and international institutes also offer evening and online courses in this domain. As with application development, the educational background requirement for Data Sciences is not limited to computer sciences and with knowledge of programming languages like Python, R-programming or SQL, career in Data Sciences is easy to approach.
Biotechnology is one of the fast emerging field in the world. The common jobs under Biotechnology includes:
- Biochemist, Bioinformatician, And Biophysicist
- Biomedical Engineer
- Biotechnology / Pharmaceutical Sales
- Biotechnology Laboratory Technician
- Clinical Research Associate
- Crime Lab Technician
- Environmental Engineer
Agricultural sector of Pakistan accounts for around 27% of GDP is the largest sector of our economy. However, Pakistan is one of the most affected countries in world from climate change and has been on alert for severe food and water shortage in future. Under the circumstances, Punjab government from PMLN era initiated hybrid farming for rice and maize crops and similar stance is now aggressively taken by current PTI government. The government has launched 1100 page agenda on Agricultural Reforms which has taken agricultural educational institutes and Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) on board for its implementation. MS in Biotechnology is a lucrative option for students in Pakistan as hybrid farming and genetic modification of crops is the future of Pakistan’s agriculture sector and the employment chances in government as well as private sector as researchers, technical supporters, managers and educators in Agricultural institutes are bright.
Moreover, the emergence of Crime labs in Pakistan is also talk of town. We all know how they solved few of the famous crimes in recent past.
4- Renewable Energy Engineering
The latest Alternative and Renewable Energy Policy by PTI government has set aggressive targets to increase share of Renewable energy by 30% in total power generation of country. The new policy aims to promote manufacturing, production and sales of products that are based on solar, wind, geothermal, biogas and several other alternate energy sources and thus, promises a bright future for individuals who are well equipped with professional knowledge in this domain. Apart from engineering universities that offer degree in Renewable energy, there are also professional schools like Pakistan Renewable Academy (PRA) that can provide diplomas and certifications in the field. The career options in this division are also diverse as with any other engineering division and the demand for educated and skilled workforce is still high.
5- STEM Educationist
Today’s world is dominated by economies that are based on innovation, creativity and advance technologies and while Pakistan has lagged behind the Western World in this regard for decades, there is a swift change in this culture recently. There is a growing demand for schools that focus on standards of education similar to countries like Finland, Sweden, and US who focus on application of knowledge like Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) instead of book learning. Career-wise, for students who are interested in developing pedagogical skills, STEM education is a way to go and the educational requirement can be easily achieved by adding STEM courses to regular Bachelors in Education (B.Ed) degree. The government of Pakistan is already in process of a pilot study on selected government schools where STEM education is being imparted with help of private educationists. Once policy is formulated, there will be a sharp rise in demand for educationists who are well equipped with necessary skills for being a STEM teacher. The salary for a STEM teacher is already lucrative compared to traditional private schools and thus, is an career choice for students who have a knack for teaching or who are interested in changing the education system in Pakistan.
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