Not all STEM majors must become nurse practitioners, software developers, or mechanical engineers. As the world digitally transforms, careers in STEM-related fields are flourishing, with many new tech jobs being developed. If you are an international student planning to study for a university degree in the US, let’s look at some lesser-known science, technology, engineering, and math-related jobs — and the Shorelight universities that can get you started in earning qualifications for each.
Nine Careers in STEM for You to Consider
Innovation in science, tools, and technology constantly creates new opportunities. In fact, many of the following tech jobs didn’t exist a decade ago or existed in a much different fashion. An information security analyst, for instance, is a relatively new position with a 35% job growth outlook — 30% higher than the national average.
But it’s not just information technology (IT) jobs that are growing. Modern challenges (such as climate change and pandemics) and opportunities (such as renewable energy and recyclables) also contribute to the growth of many professional opportunities. For instance, epidemiologists (who study disease patterns and influence public health policy) are expected to see 26% job growth between 2021 and 2031.
The following STEM careers show positive job growth that’s higher than the US national average. These tech jobs pay excellent salaries, have room for advancement, and combine different skill sets to appeal to a wide range of qualified graduates.
Certified Ethical Hacker
Job description: Companies hire White Hat, or ethical, hackers to uncover security vulnerabilities in their tech before Black Hat hackers (i.e., bad guys) find ways to take advantage of those flaws. Besides being a cool-sounding job, ethical hackers are becoming more necessary as the Internet of Things (IoT) revolution means more access — and vulnerability — to systems and more.
Average annual US-based salary: Between $94,000 and $121,000
Average annual Brazil-based salary: R$ 91,000
Average annual China-based salary: ¥316,000
Average annual India-based salary: ₹708,000
Job description: These cutting-edge IT specialists work to understand a business’s data-based needs and then craft the required storage, access, and integration solutions. As companies digitally transform, they will need more data architects to help them get the most out of their analytics.
Average annual US-based salary: Between $45,000 and $176,000
Average annual Brazil-based salary: R$ 176.00
Average annual China-based salary: ¥415,017
Average annual India-based salary: ₹24.0 LPA
Job description: If working to provide better patient conditions at hospitals and other health care settings sounds like a rewarding career, consider becoming a clinical ethicist. Ethicists help care-providing institutions make inclusive and thoughtful choices on behalf of their patients.
Average annual US-based salary: Between $96,000 and $121,000
Average annual Brazil-based salary: Unreported
Average annual China-based salary: Unreported
Average annual India-based salary: Unreported
Job description: As populations age, and with the rise of health problems such as diabetes and obesity, orthotist and prosthetist jobs will grow by 17% between 2021 and 2031.
Average annual US-based salary: $78,000
Average annual Brazil-based salary: R$ 95.180
Average annual China-based salary: ¥237,979
Average annual India-based salary: ₹9,34,850
Medical/Health Services Manager
Job description: Medical and health services managers work at the intersection of business and health care, and oversee different elements of medical and health care facilities, such as nursing or retirement homes. A health services manager may handle insurance claims, work in finance, or train new staff.
Average annual US-based salary: $76,000
Average annual Brazil-based salary: R$ 165,847
Average annual China-based salary: Unreported
Average annual India-based salary: ₹4.1 LPA
Job description: The shortages that made the headlines during the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrate how important the management of supplies, people, services, and products is to global economies. Logisticians manage, coordinate, and analyze the flow of products to businesses, countries, militaries, and more.
Average annual US-based salary: $74,000
Average annual Brazil-based salary: R$ 123,000
Average annual China-based salary: ¥402,000
Average annual India-based salary: ₹2.2 LPA
Job description: These engineers create frameworks to build products, release feature updates, and deploy technology. They also introduce automation, tools, and workflows to increase efficiency and balance the priorities of the software development lifecycle.
Average annual US-based salary: $128,000
Average annual Brazil-based salary: R$ 229.398
Average annual China-based salary: ¥343,340
Average annual India-based salary: ₹6.5 LPA
Job description: Good design isn’t just for aesthetics. It also creates access, builds trust, and closes e-commerce transactions for businesses. User experience (UX) and user interface (UI) designers combine creativity, empathy, and technical skill to build webpages, apps, and other digital interfaces that we use online.
Average annual US-based salary: $103,000
Average annual Brazil-based salary: R$ 148.651
Average annual China-based salary: ¥351,719
Average annual India-based salary: ₹4.8 LPA
Site Reliability Engineer
Job description: From typhoons to TikTok fame, websites, apps, and other digital properties experience bandwidth problems or go down for myriad reasons. Site reliability engineers help keep critical systems up and running no matter the challenge, so businesses can continue to earn and governments can continue to serve.
Average annual US-based salary: $162,000
Average annual Brazil-based salary: R$ 163,608
Average annual China-based salary: ¥310,403
Average annual India-based salary: ₹12.3 LPA
Shorelight Universities Set You Up for Success
Just as there are many opportunities for STEM-focused students outside the most popular majors and concentrations, you don’t have to study at MIT to access a great science, technology, engineering, or math-based education in the United States. Further, for international students studying in the US, Shorelight’s team of advisors and counselors are available to help every step of the way. From application to graduation, students can rely on a team of professionals who are there to ensure their study abroad experience is successful.
The following competitive programs offer opportunities in a wide array of STEM careers and also come with visa support, academic advisors and ESL support, social and community-building experiences, and internship and career services through Shorelight.
Western New England University
Western New England University has a top-100 undergraduate engineering program, according to U.S. News & World Report, and is frequently on best value lists due to a low tuition price point. Located in Springfield, Massachusetts, Western New England combines the opportunity of an up-and-coming city on the East Coast with access to the Berkshire Mountains and plenty of outdoor activities to pursue.
Learn more about Western New England University >
University of Dayton
The University of Dayton in Ohio has a top-50 entrepreneurial program, and its undergraduate engineering program is ranked 123rd best in the United States, according to U.S. News & World Report. Classes at Dayton average a 15:1 student-to-teacher ratio, and undergrads can pick from more than 80 different majors across five schools and colleges: the College of Arts and Sciences, School of Business Administration, School of Education and Health Sciences, School of Engineering, and the School of Law.
Dayton is also the #1 Catholic national university in engineering research, physical science, and is ranked the #1 US college for materials research.
Learn more about the University of Dayton >
University of the Pacific
University of the Pacific is a top-100 university in value (ranked #56 in the US), social mobility (#82), and ethnic diversity (ranked #7 in California). Pacific is ranked #96 best university in the United States by Times Higher Education World University Rankings. Located close to Silicon Valley in Stockton, California — with a second campus in San Francisco — Pacific is an excellent option for students looking to intern or start their careers in tech, and it also has outstanding programs in engineering, mathematics, and pharmacy.
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University of Utah
The University of Utah is ranked #48 best public school and 105th best national university by U.S. News & World Report. Utah is among the top 50 universities in the United States in engineering research productivity, and their overall STEM-based programming consistently ranks in the top 25 among US public schools. And with its location in Salt Lake City, students can access internships and career-building opportunities in one of the best job markets in the United States.
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York College of Pennsylvania
York College of Pennsylvania packs 70+ majors — 13 in the Kinsley School of Engineering, Science, and Technology— and fantastic career-building opportunities into a small-city campus. Small classes, proximity to Philadelphia, and a hands-on approach to learning in dedicated biology, chemistry, computer science, engineering, and machining technology labs make York’s program attractive.
Students also have access to the Naylor Ecological Building — featuring a large aquaria space including an aquaponics system and a controlled growth chamber — and the Civil Engineering Center, providing engineering students with hands-on learning on cutting-edge equipment.
Learn more about York College of Pennsylvania >
Just outside Chicago, Lewis University is an excellent option for students who want access to the academic, social, and career-minded resources that come with a significant city, while retaining enough distance to study with focus. Lewis is a 2023 top-40 best-value school, according to U.S. News & World Report — a Catholic liberal arts university with robust technology, health sciences, and business programs.
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A Catholic university in Madison, Wisconsin, Edgewood College prepares students for successful careers in STEM-oriented fields, such as nursing, business, and health sciences. Edgewood has more than 50 student-run clubs, 60 majors, and, as of Fall 2021, 100% of Edgewood first-year students receive grants or scholarships.
Learn more about Edgewood College >
Roosevelt University is one of the most ethnically diverse universities in the Midwest and second-most diverse in Chicago, a bustling city with career and internship opportunities in countless STEM-related industries. Roosevelt University offers international students several virtual opportunities to connect with students, faculty, and advisors on campus before deciding where they want to attend.
Learn more about Roosevelt University >
Shenandoah University is in Winchester, Virginia, a small town just a short drive from Baltimore, Maryland, and the nation’s capital, Washington, DC. Shenandoah’s Division of Applied Technology allows international students to engage with cutting-edge technology and prepare for tomorrow’s most in-demand STEM-based occupations.
Learn more about Shenandoah University >
Build an In-Demand Career in STEM at a Shorelight University
If you are interested in STEM careers and tech jobs, hundreds of US university programs can help you find the perfect fit. But only Shorelight programs provide hands-on support and guidance from application to your chosen schools to job applications in your chosen career path.
Remember, if you choose a STEM-based degree option, you will likely qualify to work and stay under the 24-month extended Optional Practical Training (OPT) program available through the US government. There are many opportunities to maximize your time studying in the United States. Position yourself to find the right one for you and your career dreams.
Shorelight advisors help you find your best-fit STEM program >