Highest paying jobs that require a 2 year degree in Virginia Beach - Norfolk

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March 31, 2022
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Highest paying jobs that require a 2 year degree in Virginia Beach - Norfolk

The American economy is increasingly becoming one in which a high school education is simply not enough. Of the 55 million job openings expected from 2010 to 2020, only 36% will require a high school education or less, 30% will require some college or an associate degree, while 35% will require at least a bachelor's degree, according Georgetown University's Center on Education and the Workplace.

Attaining an associate degree or better for 25- to 29-year-olds increased from 38% to 46% between 2000 to 2017, while bachelors degree attainment or better increased from 29% to 36%, and attainment of master's degrees or higher grew grown from 5% to 9%, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. While the largest percentage of U.S. workers only hold a high school diploma-with the second-highest percentage belonging to those with baccalaureate degrees-the number of holders of an associate or technical degree is rising.

Fortunately, the number of associate degree-friendly positions is growing. Stacker compiled a list of the highest and lowest paying jobs that require a 2-year degree in Virginia Beach using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Jobs are ranked by 2020 annual mean wage. Job descriptions are from O*NET.

With many people finding the cost of a four-year education too high, given the rising cost of tuition and stagnant wage growth, it's encouraging to know that there are obtainable, well-paying professions for those with a two-year degree. While a bachelor's degree holder can be expected to make about $500,000 more in lifetime earnings compared with an associate degree holder, the jobs we have listed show the exceptions.

Keep reading to learn about some well-paying gigs you can land with an associate degree.

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#33. Dietetic technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $29,850
- #74 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 90

National
- Annual mean salary: $32,920
- Employment: 26,430
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson, IN ($55,310)
--- Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA ($49,860)
--- Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, OR-WA ($46,450)
- Job description: Assist in the provision of food service and nutritional programs, under the supervision of a dietitian. May plan and produce meals based on established guidelines, teach principles of food and nutrition, or counsel individuals.

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Maria Sbytova // Shutterstock

#32. Veterinary technologists and technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $37,940
- #94 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 370

National
- Annual mean salary: $37,860
- Employment: 109,490
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Harrisburg-Carlisle, PA ($56,020)
--- Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA ($53,580)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($53,440)
- Job description: Perform medical tests in a laboratory environment for use in the treatment and diagnosis of diseases in animals. Prepare vaccines and serums for prevention of diseases. Prepare tissue samples, take blood samples, and execute laboratory tests, such as urinalysis and blood counts. Clean and sterilize instruments and materials and maintain equipment and machines. May assist a veterinarian during surgery.

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CHRISTOF STACHE // Getty Images

#31. Preschool teachers, except special education

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $40,010
- #66 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,310

National
- Annual mean salary: $36,550
- Employment: 370,940
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Midland, TX ($58,080)
--- Odessa, TX ($54,120)
--- Hagerstown-Martinsburg, MD-WV ($52,350)
- Job description: Instruct preschool-aged students, following curricula or lesson plans, in activities designed to promote social, physical, and intellectual growth.

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Rawpixel.com //Shutterstock

#30. Human resources assistants, except payroll and timekeeping

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $41,310
- #165 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 820

National
- Annual mean salary: $44,170
- Employment: 108,470
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($55,950)
--- Ithaca, NY ($55,450)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($55,410)
- Job description: Compile and keep personnel records. Record data for each employee, such as address, weekly earnings, absences, amount of sales or production, supervisory reports, and date of and reason for termination. May prepare reports for employment records, file employment records, or search employee files and furnish information to authorized persons.

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#29. Chemical technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $45,340
- #140 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 180

National
- Annual mean salary: $53,700
- Employment: 63,490
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Billings, MT ($85,460)
--- Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX ($75,430)
--- Baton Rouge, LA ($74,780)
- Job description: Conduct chemical and physical laboratory tests to assist scientists in making qualitative and quantitative analyses of solids, liquids, and gaseous materials for research and development of new products or processes, quality control, maintenance of environmental standards, and other work involving experimental, theoretical, or practical application of chemistry and related sciences.

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GaudiLab // Shutterstock

#28. Paralegals and legal assistants

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $46,350
- #238 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 2,050

National
- Annual mean salary: $56,610
- Employment: 332,720
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Napa, CA ($93,110)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($90,280)
--- Trenton, NJ ($77,970)
- Job description: Assist lawyers by investigating facts, preparing legal documents, or researching legal precedent. Conduct research to support a legal proceeding, to formulate a defense, or to initiate legal action.

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Hitdelight // Shutterstock

#27. Architectural and civil drafters

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $46,370
- #250 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 360

National
- Annual mean salary: $59,120
- Employment: 99,180
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Anchorage, AK ($74,170)
--- Danbury, CT ($72,760)
--- Evansville, IN-KY ($72,370)
- Job description: Prepare detailed drawings of architectural and structural features of buildings or drawings and topographical relief maps used in civil engineering projects, such as highways, bridges, and public works. Use knowledge of building materials, engineering practices, and mathematics to complete drawings.

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photodiem // Shutterstock

#26. Environmental science and protection technicians, including health

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $48,020
- #75 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 110

National
- Annual mean salary: $50,960
- Employment: 31,860
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($74,530)
--- Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI ($72,010)
--- Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, CA ($70,850)
- Job description: Perform laboratory and field tests to monitor the environment and investigate sources of pollution, including those that affect health, under the direction of an environmental scientist, engineer, or other specialist. May collect samples of gases, soil, water, and other materials for testing.

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#25. Electrical and electronics drafters

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $51,130
- #91 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 100

National
- Annual mean salary: $65,720
- Employment: 23,020
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($94,960)
--- Colorado Springs, CO ($83,220)
--- New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($82,680)
- Job description: Prepare wiring diagrams, circuit board assembly diagrams, and layout drawings used for the manufacture, installation, or repair of electrical equipment.

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#24. Physical therapist assistants

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $54,110
- #236 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 740

National
- Annual mean salary: $59,440
- Employment: 92,740
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX ($81,510)
--- Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA ($78,370)
--- Visalia-Porterville, CA ($78,240)
- Job description: Assist physical therapists in providing physical therapy treatments and procedures. May, in accordance with state laws, assist in the development of treatment plans, carry out routine functions, document the progress of treatment, and modify specific treatments in accordance with patient status and within the scope of treatment plans established by a physical therapist. Generally requires formal training.

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#23. Medical equipment repairers

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $54,800
- #63 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 230

National
- Annual mean salary: $55,090
- Employment: 48,510
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($89,250)
--- Modesto, CA ($83,280)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($74,310)
- Job description: Test, adjust, or repair biomedical or electromedical equipment.

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Dragon Images // Shutterstock

#22. Broadcast technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $54,940
- #11 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: data not available

National
- Annual mean salary: $49,250
- Employment: 25,960
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV ($67,430)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($65,510)
--- Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO ($63,680)
- Job description: Set up, operate, and maintain the electronic equipment used to acquire, edit, and transmit audio and video for radio or television programs. Control and adjust incoming and outgoing broadcast signals to regulate sound volume, signal strength, and signal clarity. Operate satellite, microwave, or other transmitter equipment to broadcast radio or television programs.

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Anze Furlan // Shutterstock

#21. Morticians, undertakers, and funeral arrangers

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $55,270
- #46 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 80

National
- Annual mean salary: $59,000
- Employment: 24,560
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI ($93,870)
--- New Haven, CT ($89,570)
--- Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH ($81,970)
- Job description: Perform various tasks to arrange and direct individual funeral services, such as coordinating transportation of body to mortuary, interviewing family or other authorized person to arrange details, selecting pallbearers, aiding with the selection of officials for religious rites, and providing transportation for mourners.

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#20. Electro-mechanical and mechatronics technologists and technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $55,990
- #33 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 310

National
- Annual mean salary: $62,800
- Employment: 13,160
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, MD ($75,780)
--- Durham-Chapel Hill, NC ($75,230)
--- California-Lexington Park, MD ($74,870)
- Job description: Operate, test, maintain, or adjust unmanned, automated, servomechanical, or electromechanical equipment. May operate unmanned submarines, aircraft, or other equipment to observe or record visual information at sites such as oil rigs, crop fields, buildings, or for similar infrastructure, deep ocean exploration, or hazardous waste removal. May assist engineers in testing and designing robotics equipment.

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Kitawit Jitaton // Shutterstock

#19. Radio, cellular, and tower equipment installers and repairers

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $56,520
- #28 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 280

National
- Annual mean salary: $60,790
- Employment: 13,210
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($95,610)
--- Spokane-Spokane Valley, WA ($93,380)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($84,670)
- Job description: Repair, install, or maintain mobile or stationary radio transmitting, broadcasting, and receiving equipment, and two-way radio communications systems used in cellular telecommunications, mobile broadband, ship-to-shore, aircraft-to-ground communications, and radio equipment in service and emergency vehicles. May test and analyze network coverage.

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#18. Civil engineering technologists and technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $56,700
- #91 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 410

National
- Annual mean salary: $56,590
- Employment: 67,270
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($87,120)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($76,230)
--- Warner Robins, GA ($75,840)
- Job description: Apply theory and principles of civil engineering in planning, designing, and overseeing construction and maintenance of structures and facilities under the direction of engineering staff or physical scientists.

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Halfpoint // Shutterstock

#17. Cardiovascular technologists and technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $58,140
- #84 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 260

National
- Annual mean salary: $60,940
- Employment: 55,980
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA ($104,430)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($89,930)
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($88,450)
- Job description: Conduct tests on pulmonary or cardiovascular systems of patients for diagnostic, therapeutic, or research purposes. May conduct or assist in electrocardiograms, cardiac catheterizations, pulmonary functions, lung capacity, and similar tests.

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Dmytro Zinkevych // Shutterstock

#16. Respiratory therapists

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $60,590
- #118 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 470

National
- Annual mean salary: $65,640
- Employment: 131,890
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($104,200)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($100,710)
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($100,080)
- Job description: Assess, treat, and care for patients with breathing disorders. Assume primary responsibility for all respiratory care modalities, including the supervision of respiratory therapy technicians. Initiate and conduct therapeutic procedures; maintain patient records; and select, assemble, check, and operate equipment.

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#15. Radiologic technologists and technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $61,210
- #131 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,370

National
- Annual mean salary: $64,840
- Employment: 206,720
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($120,270)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($116,250)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($114,850)
- Job description: Take x-rays and CAT scans or administer nonradioactive materials into patient's bloodstream for diagnostic or research purposes. Includes radiologic technologists and technicians who specialize in other scanning modalities.

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#14. Mechanical drafters

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $63,640
- #52 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 300

National
- Annual mean salary: $61,490
- Employment: 51,620
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($105,360)
--- San Diego-Carlsbad, CA ($80,820)
--- Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, MS ($78,680)
- Job description: Prepare detailed working diagrams of machinery and mechanical devices, including dimensions, fastening methods, and other engineering information.

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Arjuna Kodisinghe // Shutterstock

#13. Computer network support specialists

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $65,290
- #120 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 910

National
- Annual mean salary: $71,040
- Employment: 184,220
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($92,550)
--- Greeley, CO ($92,240)
--- Barnstable Town, MA ($90,600)
- Job description: Analyze, test, troubleshoot, and evaluate existing network systems, such as local area networks (LAN), wide area networks (WAN), cloud networks, servers, and other data communications networks. Perform network maintenance to ensure networks operate correctly with minimal interruption.

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#12. Industrial engineering technologists and technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $66,010
- #28 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 280

National
- Annual mean salary: $59,920
- Employment: 62,980
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, MS ($94,500)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($84,600)
--- Albuquerque, NM ($81,910)
- Job description: Apply engineering theory and principles to problems of industrial layout or manufacturing production, usually under the direction of engineering staff. May perform time and motion studies on worker operations in a variety of industries for purposes such as establishing standard production rates or improving efficiency.

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#11. Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $66,040
- #31 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 500

National
- Annual mean salary: $60,880
- Employment: 39,880
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA ($83,570)
--- Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX ($83,310)
--- Albuquerque, NM ($81,560)
- Job description: Apply theory and principles of mechanical engineering to modify, develop, test, or adjust machinery and equipment under direction of engineering staff or physical scientists.

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#10. Occupational therapy assistants

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $66,710
- #60 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 150

National
- Annual mean salary: $63,420
- Employment: 42,750
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA ($89,380)
--- McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, TX ($86,850)
--- Visalia-Porterville, CA ($84,370)
- Job description: Assist occupational therapists in providing occupational therapy treatments and procedures. May, in accordance with state laws, assist in development of treatment plans, carry out routine functions, direct activity programs, and document the progress of treatments. Generally requires formal training.

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Rawpixel.com //Shutterstock

#9. Web developers and digital interface designers

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $69,460
- #99 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 680

National
- Annual mean salary: $85,490
- Employment: 156,220
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($138,070)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($113,910)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($112,440)
- Job description: Develop and implement websites, web applications, application databases, and interactive web interfaces. Evaluate code to ensure that it is properly structured, meets industry standards, and is compatible with browsers and devices. Optimize website performance, scalability, and server-side code and processes. May develop website infrastructure and integrate websites with other computer applications.

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#8. Avionics technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $72,100
- #19 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 180

National
- Annual mean salary: $69,180
- Employment: 21,390
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($93,050)
--- Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL ($89,050)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($87,190)
- Job description: Install, inspect, test, adjust, or repair avionics equipment, such as radar, radio, navigation, and missile control systems in aircraft or space vehicles.

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#7. Magnetic resonance imaging technologists

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $72,220
- #70 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 180

National
- Annual mean salary: $75,960
- Employment: 39,270
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($140,980)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($126,590)
--- Modesto, CA ($112,080)
- Job description: Operate Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanners. Monitor patient safety and comfort, and view images of area being scanned to ensure quality of pictures. May administer gadolinium contrast dosage intravenously. May interview patient, explain MRI procedures, and position patient on examining table. May enter into the computer data such as patient history, anatomical area to be scanned, orientation specified, and position of entry.

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#6. Diagnostic medical sonographers

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $74,840
- #95 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 320

National
- Annual mean salary: $77,790
- Employment: 73,920
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA ($138,130)
--- Santa Rosa, CA ($126,610)
--- Stockton-Lodi, CA ($121,710)
- Job description: Produce ultrasonic recordings of internal organs for use by physicians. Includes vascular technologists.

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#5. Nuclear medicine technologists

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $75,130
- #62 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 90

National
- Annual mean salary: $82,080
- Employment: 17,510
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($139,410)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($136,650)
--- Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA ($135,660)
- Job description: Prepare, administer, and measure radioactive isotopes in therapeutic, diagnostic, and tracer studies using a variety of radioisotope equipment. Prepare stock solutions of radioactive materials and calculate doses to be administered by radiologists. Subject patients to radiation. Execute blood volume, red cell survival, and fat absorption studies following standard laboratory techniques.

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anyaivanova // Shutterstock

#4. Electrical and electronic engineering technologists and technicians

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $79,010
- #11 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,700

National
- Annual mean salary: $68,310
- Employment: 115,270
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Bakersfield, CA ($90,130)
--- Salinas, CA ($87,550)
--- Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA ($85,190)
- Job description: Apply electrical and electronic theory and related knowledge, usually under the direction of engineering staff, to design, build, repair, adjust, and modify electrical components, circuitry, controls, and machinery for subsequent evaluation and use by engineering staff in making engineering design decisions.

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#3. Dental hygienists

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $81,170
- #89 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,010

National
- Annual mean salary: $78,050
- Employment: 194,830
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, CA ($133,730)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($120,340)
--- Santa Rosa, CA ($118,980)
- Job description: Administer oral hygiene care to patients. Assess patient oral hygiene problems or needs and maintain health records. Advise patients on oral health maintenance and disease prevention. May provide advanced care such as providing fluoride treatment or administering topical anesthesia.

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#2. Radiation therapists

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $85,330
- #41 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 60

National
- Annual mean salary: $94,300
- Employment: 17,390
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($150,950)
--- Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA ($145,420)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($141,130)
- Job description: Provide radiation therapy to patients as prescribed by a radiation oncologist according to established practices and standards. Duties may include reviewing prescription and diagnosis; acting as liaison with physician and supportive care personnel; preparing equipment, such as immobilization, treatment, and protection devices; and maintaining records, reports, and files. May assist in dosimetry procedures and tumor localization.

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Burben // Shutterstock

#1. Air traffic controllers

Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC
- Annual mean salary: $98,870
- #27 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 90

National
- Annual mean salary: $127,440
- Employment: 22,190
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA ($157,220)
--- Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI ($155,420)
--- Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA ($152,840)
- Job description: Control air traffic on and within vicinity of airport, and movement of air traffic between altitude sectors and control centers, according to established procedures and policies. Authorize, regulate, and control commercial airline flights according to government or company regulations to expedite and ensure flight safety.

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