Highest paying jobs in Nashville for high school graduates

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The average college graduate in 2019 earned $78,000 a year, while the average high school graduate takes home just $45,000, according to research from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. To put it in perspective, the average annual wage for workers in the U.S. that same year was $51,916.27.

Of course, college isn’t for everyone. There are many reasons high-school graduates may choose to not continue on to college, not the least of which being cost. Average tuition costs continue to rise each year, the exception being the 2020-2021 school year, due to the coronavirus pandemic. Average tuition at a public, in-state university coming in at $9,687; tuition for out-of-state students at public schools, and for everyone at private universities, is significantly higher at $21,874 and $35,087, respectively.

| Check out more lists and rankings from across Tennessee

Just because you decide higher education isn’t in the cards doesn’t mean you have to resign yourself to a lifetime of low-paying jobs. You just need to be strategic about the career you choose. Stacker compiled a list of the highest-paying jobs for high school graduates in Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Jobs are ranked by 2020 annual mean wage.

Keep reading to see which jobs in your city pay the most for high school graduates.

welcomia // Shutterstock

#50. Mobile heavy equipment mechanics, except engines

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $51,440 (#213 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 680

National
– Annual mean salary: $57,000
– Employment: 147,680
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Urban Honolulu, HI ($84,460)
— Fairbanks, AK ($81,920)
— Bismarck, ND ($78,350)
– Job description: Diagnose, adjust, repair, or overhaul mobile mechanical, hydraulic, and pneumatic equipment, such as cranes, bulldozers, graders, and conveyors, used in construction, logging, and mining.

wandee007 // Shutterstock

#49. Earth drillers, except oil and gas; and explosives workers, ordnance handling experts, and blasters

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $51,480 (#45 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 170

National
– Annual mean salary: $51,040
– Employment: 22,540
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Lafayette, LA ($98,100)
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($69,160)
— Albany-Schenectady-Troy, NY ($69,090)
– Job description: Operate a variety of drills such as rotary, churn, and pneumatic to tap subsurface water and salt deposits, to remove core samples during mineral exploration or soil testing, and to facilitate the use of explosives in mining or construction. Includes horizontal and earth boring machine operators.

Jat306 // Shutterstock

#48. Millwrights

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $51,970 (#99 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 320

National
– Annual mean salary: $59,080
– Employment: 44,400
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Elmira, NY ($94,190)
— Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($90,570)
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($85,090)
– Job description: Install, dismantle, or move machinery and heavy equipment according to layout plans, blueprints, or other drawings.

Paolo Bona // Shutterstock

#47. Food service managers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $52,250 (#275 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 2,820

National
– Annual mean salary: $61,000
– Employment: 197,010
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT ($97,610)
— Trenton, NJ ($95,640)
— Waterbury, CT ($88,100)
– Job description: Plan, direct, or coordinate activities of an organization or department that serves food and beverages.

Oil and Gas Photographer // Shutterstock

#46. Control and valve installers and repairers, except mechanical door

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $52,260 (#120 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 250

National
– Annual mean salary: $62,400
– Employment: 50,660
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Santa Rosa, CA ($95,240)
— Madison, WI ($90,020)
— Salinas, CA ($87,650)
– Job description: Install, repair, and maintain mechanical regulating and controlling devices, such as electric meters, gas regulators, thermostats, safety and flow valves, and other mechanical governors.

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Christian Lagerek // Shutterstock

#45. Gas plant operators

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $52,520 (#33 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 60

National
– Annual mean salary: $73,290
– Employment: 14,990
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Diego-Carlsbad, CA ($98,230)
— Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA ($97,370)
— New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($92,160)
– Job description: Distribute or process gas for utility companies and others by controlling compressors to maintain specified pressures on main pipelines.

Canva

#44. Excavating and loading machine and dragline operators, surface mining

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $52,740 (#37 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: data not available

National
– Annual mean salary: $48,500
– Employment: 40,240
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($106,100)
— Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, NV ($84,840)
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($78,360)
– Job description: Operate or tend machinery at surface mining site, equipped with scoops, shovels, or buckets to excavate and load loose materials.

Hulton Archive // Getty Images

#43. Electricians

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $52,940 (#225 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 3,810

National
– Annual mean salary: $61,550
– Employment: 656,510
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($106,680)
— Trenton, NJ ($90,210)
— Kankakee, IL ($88,530)
– Job description: Install, maintain, and repair electrical wiring, equipment, and fixtures. Ensure that work is in accordance with relevant codes. May install or service street lights, intercom systems, or electrical control systems.

rlat // Shutterstock

#42. Postal service clerks

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $53,340 (#70 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 330

National
– Annual mean salary: $51,200
– Employment: 86,950
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Monroe, MI ($58,120)
— El Centro, CA ($58,000)
— Houma-Thibodaux, LA ($57,330)
– Job description: Perform any combination of tasks in a United States Postal Service (USPS) post office, such as receive letters and parcels; sell postage and revenue stamps, postal cards, and stamped envelopes; fill out and sell money orders; place mail in pigeon holes of mail rack or in bags, and examine mail for correct postage. Includes postal service clerks employed by USPS contractors.

Erin Deleon // Shutterstock

#41. Postal service mail carriers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $53,380 (#101 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 1,880

National
– Annual mean salary: $53,180
– Employment: 333,570
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Bismarck, ND ($56,520)
— Burlington, NC ($55,750)
— Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA ($55,680)
– Job description: Sort and deliver mail for the United States Postal Service (USPS). Deliver mail on established route by vehicle or on foot. Includes postal service mail carriers employed by USPS contractors.

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John Leung // Shutterstock

#40. Brickmasons and blockmasons

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $53,420 (#93 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 880

National
– Annual mean salary: $58,420
– Employment: 59,940
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Duluth, MN-WI ($90,610)
— Providence-Warwick, RI-MA ($90,290)
— Pittsfield, MA ($90,070)
– Job description: Lay and bind building materials, such as brick, structural tile, concrete block, cinder block, glass block, and terra-cotta block, with mortar and other substances, to construct or repair walls, partitions, arches, sewers, and other structures.

Pixabay

#39. Camera and photographic equipment repairers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $53,660 (#2 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 40

National
– Annual mean salary: $42,740
– Employment: 3,320
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH ($53,730)
— Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN ($53,660)
— Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI ($48,160)
– Job description: Repair and adjust cameras and photographic equipment, including commercial video and motion picture camera equipment.

Viktoriia Hnatiuk // Shutterstock

#38. Travel agents

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $54,620 (#11 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 490

National
– Annual mean salary: $46,650
– Employment: 55,180
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($65,040)
— Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($64,450)
— Sacramento–Roseville–Arden-Arcade, CA ($60,380)
– Job description: Plan and sell transportation and accommodations for customers. Determine destination, modes of transportation, travel dates, costs, and accommodations required. May also describe, plan, and arrange itineraries and sell tour packages. May assist in resolving clients’ travel problems.

Unsplash

#37. Tax preparers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $55,240 (#48 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 1,400

National
– Annual mean salary: $52,710
– Employment: 62,600
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($99,160)
— College Station-Bryan, TX ($80,580)
— Anchorage, AK ($78,470)
– Job description: Prepare tax returns for individuals or small businesses.

Kawin Ounprasertsuk // Shutterstock

#36. Locksmiths and safe repairers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $55,860 (#18 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: data not available

National
– Annual mean salary: $46,240
– Employment: 16,180
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($69,220)
— Fresno, CA ($67,890)
— Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV ($66,500)
– Job description: Repair and open locks, make keys, change locks and safe combinations, and install and repair safes.

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Monkey Business Images // Shutterstock

#35. Insurance sales agents

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $56,320 (#234 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 2,890

National
– Annual mean salary: $69,100
– Employment: 409,950
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($109,540)
— Birmingham-Hoover, AL ($105,840)
— Fond du Lac, WI ($105,190)
– Job description: Sell life, property, casualty, health, automotive, or other types of insurance. May refer clients to independent brokers, work as an independent broker, or be employed by an insurance company.

Andrey_Popov // Shutterstock

#34. Plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $56,570 (#152 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 2,480

National
– Annual mean salary: $61,100
– Employment: 417,440
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($106,100)
— Fairbanks, AK ($94,280)
— Kankakee, IL ($93,420)
– Job description: Assemble, install, alter, and repair pipelines or pipe systems that carry water, steam, air, or other liquids or gases. May install heating and cooling equipment and mechanical control systems. Includes sprinkler fitters.

DenisProduction.com // Shutterstock

#33. Chefs and head cooks

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $56,920 (#91 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 430

National
– Annual mean salary: $58,740
– Employment: 101,490
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Diego-Carlsbad, CA ($98,210)
— Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI ($90,840)
— Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT ($86,460)
– Job description: Direct and may participate in the preparation, seasoning, and cooking of salads, soups, fish, meats, vegetables, desserts, or other foods. May plan and price menu items, order supplies, and keep records and accounts.

LStockStudio // Shutterstock

#32. Brokerage clerks

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $56,950 (#35 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 360

National
– Annual mean salary: $58,460
– Employment: 44,720
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT ($75,240)
— New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($73,770)
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($69,860)
– Job description: Perform duties related to the purchase, sale, or holding of securities. Duties include writing orders for stock purchases or sales, computing transfer taxes, verifying stock transactions, accepting and delivering securities, tracking stock price fluctuations, computing equity, distributing dividends, and keeping records of daily transactions and holdings.

Andrey_Popov // Shutterstock

#31. Private detectives and investigators

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $58,020 (#41 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 380

National
– Annual mean salary: $60,100
– Employment: 32,200
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($88,550)
— Fresno, CA ($79,220)
— Anchorage, AK ($77,960)
– Job description: Gather, analyze, compile, and report information regarding individuals or organizations to clients, or detect occurrences of unlawful acts or infractions of rules in private establishments.

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Kot500 // Shutterstock

#30. Bus and truck mechanics and diesel engine specialists

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $58,240 (#37 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 1,810

National
– Annual mean salary: $52,090
– Employment: 253,010
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($75,320)
— New Bedford, MA ($75,110)
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($72,460)
– Job description: Diagnose, adjust, repair, or overhaul buses and trucks, or maintain and repair any type of diesel engines. Includes mechanics working primarily with automobile or marine diesel engines.

SritanaN // Shutterstock

#29. Industrial machinery mechanics

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $58,450 (#122 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 2,410

National
– Annual mean salary: $57,350
– Employment: 385,980
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Norwich-New London-Westerly, CT-RI ($84,180)
— San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles-Arroyo Grande, CA ($84,150)
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($77,580)
– Job description: Repair, install, adjust, or maintain industrial production and processing machinery or refinery and pipeline distribution systems. May also install, dismantle, or move machinery and heavy equipment according to plans.

Pressmaster // Shutterstock

#28. Title examiners, abstractors, and searchers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $58,490 (#27 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 690

National
– Annual mean salary: $52,950
– Employment: 54,960
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Salem, OR ($73,530)
— Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX ($71,970)
— Greeley, CO ($71,560)
– Job description: Search real estate records, examine titles, or summarize pertinent legal or insurance documents or details for a variety of purposes. May compile lists of mortgages, contracts, and other instruments pertaining to titles by searching public and private records for law firms, real estate agencies, or title insurance companies.

kittirat roekburi // Shutterstock

#27. Stationary engineers and boiler operators

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $59,010 (#71 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 80

National
– Annual mean salary: $68,170
– Employment: 29,550
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($106,910)
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($104,970)
— Springfield, IL ($102,660)
– Job description: Operate or maintain stationary engines, boilers, or other mechanical equipment to provide utilities for buildings or industrial processes. Operate equipment such as steam engines, generators, motors, turbines, and steam boilers.

GaudiLab // Shutterstock

#26. First-line supervisors of office and administrative support workers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $59,190 (#134 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 14,440

National
– Annual mean salary: $62,010
– Employment: 1,427,260
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Bremerton-Silverdale, WA ($78,770)
— Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($77,030)
— New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($75,820)
– Job description: Directly supervise and coordinate the activities of clerical and administrative support workers.

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Jacob Lund // Shutterstock

#25. Advertising sales agents

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $59,220 (#85 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 640

National
– Annual mean salary: $68,040
– Employment: 110,040
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($112,850)
— Winston-Salem, NC ($104,930)
— New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($92,370)
– Job description: Sell or solicit advertising space, time, or media in publications, signage, TV, radio, or Internet establishments or public spaces.

Monkey Business Images // Shutterstock

#24. Claims adjusters, examiners, and investigators

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $59,660 (#236 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 4,110

National
– Annual mean salary: $70,650
– Employment: 287,150
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT ($97,980)
— Waterbury, CT ($92,160)
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($88,750)
– Job description: Review settled claims to determine that payments and settlements are made in accordance with company practices and procedures. Confer with legal counsel on claims requiring litigation. May also settle insurance claims.

Unsplash

#23. Crane and tower operators

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $59,940 (#55 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 130

National
– Annual mean salary: $64,010
– Employment: 44,060
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Diego-Carlsbad, CA ($89,250)
— Urban Honolulu, HI ($84,670)
— Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($84,410)
– Job description: Operate mechanical boom and cable or tower and cable equipment to lift and move materials, machines, or products in many directions.

Syda Productions // Shutterstock

#22. Executive secretaries and executive administrative assistants

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $60,610 (#112 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 2,960

National
– Annual mean salary: $65,230
– Employment: 503,390
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($92,040)
— Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT ($89,100)
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($86,180)
– Job description: Provide high-level administrative support by conducting research, preparing statistical reports, and handling information requests, as well as performing routine administrative functions such as preparing correspondence, receiving visitors, arranging conference calls, and scheduling meetings. May also train and supervise lower-level clerical staff.

Monkey Business Images // Shutterstock

#21. Lodging managers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $60,800 (#77 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 330

National
– Annual mean salary: $65,270
– Employment: 31,790
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Albany-Schenectady-Troy, NY ($108,990)
— Reno, NV ($106,060)
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($105,560)
– Job description: Plan, direct, or coordinate activities of an organization or department that provides lodging and other accommodations.

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Rebekah Zemansky // Shutterstock

#20. First-line supervisors of correctional officers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $60,890 (#73 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 140

National
– Annual mean salary: $67,600
– Employment: 53,420
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Sacramento–Roseville–Arden-Arcade, CA ($115,020)
— Trenton, NJ ($113,630)
— New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($113,070)
– Job description: Directly supervise and coordinate activities of correctional officers and jailers.

Oleg Golovnev // Shutterstock

#19. First-line supervisors of production and operating workers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $61,680 (#271 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 4,710

National
– Annual mean salary: $66,800
– Employment: 599,900
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Baton Rouge, LA ($101,930)
— Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX ($100,590)
— Longview, WA ($99,590)
– Job description: Directly supervise and coordinate the activities of production and operating workers, such as inspectors, precision workers, machine setters and operators, assemblers, fabricators, and plant and system operators. Excludes team or work leaders.

sculpies // Shutterstock

#18. First-line supervisors of construction trades and extraction workers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $61,830 (#289 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 3,900

National
– Annual mean salary: $72,990
– Employment: 614,080
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($107,870)
— Mount Vernon-Anacortes, WA ($103,930)
— Santa Rosa, CA ($100,620)
– Job description: Directly supervise and coordinate activities of construction or extraction workers.

Canva

#17. Construction and building inspectors

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $62,350 (#115 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 560

National
– Annual mean salary: $66,470
– Employment: 113,770
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($103,820)
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($102,920)
— Salinas, CA ($98,360)
– Job description: Inspect structures using engineering skills to determine structural soundness and compliance with specifications, building codes, and other regulations. Inspections may be general in nature or may be limited to a specific area, such as electrical systems or plumbing.

DenisKlimov // Shutterstock

#16. Aircraft cargo handling supervisors

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $65,140 (#12 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 50

National
– Annual mean salary: $59,620
– Employment: 10,020
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV ($83,080)
— Cincinnati, OH-KY-IN ($77,290)
— Austin-Round Rock, TX ($71,970)
– Job description: Supervise and coordinate the activities of ground crew in the loading, unloading, securing, and staging of aircraft cargo or baggage. May determine the quantity and orientation of cargo and compute aircraft center of gravity. May accompany aircraft as member of flight crew and monitor and handle cargo in flight, and assist and brief passengers on safety and emergency procedures. Includes loadmasters.

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Leszek Glasner // Shutterstock

#15. Property, real estate, and community association managers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $65,770 (#110 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 1,860

National
– Annual mean salary: $73,210
– Employment: 219,800
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Charleston-North Charleston, SC ($117,770)
— New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($113,800)
— Boulder, CO ($107,230)
– Job description: Plan, direct, or coordinate the selling, buying, leasing, or governance activities of commercial, industrial, or residential real estate properties. Includes managers of homeowner and condominium associations, rented or leased housing units, buildings, or land (including rights-of-way).

Stock Rocket // Shutterstock

#14. Sales representatives, wholesale and manufacturing, except technical and scientific products

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $65,970 (#220 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 6,760

National
– Annual mean salary: $73,500
– Employment: 1,278,670
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Danbury, CT ($112,810)
— Napa, CA ($101,850)
— Santa Fe, NM ($93,680)
– Job description: Sell goods for wholesalers or manufacturers to businesses or groups of individuals. Work requires substantial knowledge of items sold.

4 PM production // Shutterstock

#13. First-line supervisors of mechanics, installers, and repairers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $66,520 (#259 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 2,910

National
– Annual mean salary: $73,100
– Employment: 475,000
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($95,680)
— Bremerton-Silverdale, WA ($93,140)
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($92,810)
– Job description: Directly supervise and coordinate the activities of mechanics, installers, and repairers. May also advise customers on recommended services. Excludes team or work leaders.

Tim Goode/PA Images // Getty Images

#12. Sales representatives of services, except advertising, insurance, financial services, and travel

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $67,690 (#92 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 6,970

National
– Annual mean salary: $70,490
– Employment: 977,070
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($115,620)
— Lawrence, KS ($97,910)
— Boulder, CO ($94,870)
– Job description: Sell services to individuals or businesses. May describe options or resolve client problems.

ITisha // Shutterstock

#11. Bailiffs

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $72,160 (#2 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 80

National
– Annual mean salary: $51,730
– Employment: 18,120
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($72,570)
— Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN ($72,160)
— Providence-Warwick, RI-MA ($71,400)
– Job description: Maintain order in courts of law.

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#10. First-line supervisors of police and detectives

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $75,270 (#240 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 1,070

National
– Annual mean salary: $97,180
– Employment: 122,310
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($200,090)
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($182,810)
— Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, CA ($182,720)
– Job description: Directly supervise and coordinate activities of members of police force.

g-stockstudio // Shutterstock

#9. First-line supervisors of non-retail sales workers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $79,120 (#168 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 2,340

National
– Annual mean salary: $90,120
– Employment: 240,290
– Metros with highest average pay:
— La Crosse-Onalaska, WI-MN ($124,150)
— Durham-Chapel Hill, NC ($122,460)
— Leominster-Gardner, MA ($119,130)
– Job description: Directly supervise and coordinate activities of sales workers other than retail sales workers. May perform duties such as budgeting, accounting, and personnel work, in addition to supervisory duties.

Luisa Leal Photography // Shutterstock

#8. Electrical power-line installers and repairers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $79,790 (#83 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 650

National
– Annual mean salary: $74,410
– Employment: 114,930
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($114,820)
— Redding, CA ($112,850)
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($111,810)
– Job description: Install or repair cables or wires used in electrical power or distribution systems. May erect poles and light or heavy-duty transmission towers.

Prath // Shutterstock

#7. Detectives and criminal investigators

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $80,060 (#144 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 580

National
– Annual mean salary: $89,300
– Employment: 105,980
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($127,380)
— Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV ($127,090)
— Anchorage, AK ($126,530)
– Job description: Conduct investigations related to suspected violations of federal, state, or local laws to prevent or solve crimes.

Skycolors // Shutterstock

#6. Commercial pilots

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $83,320 (#83 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 90

National
– Annual mean salary: $110,830
– Employment: 37,120
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Sioux City, IA-NE-SD ($153,990)
— Medford, OR ($152,730)
— Sacramento–Roseville–Arden-Arcade, CA ($152,290)
– Job description: Pilot and navigate the flight of fixed-wing aircraft on nonscheduled air carrier routes, or helicopters. Requires Commercial Pilot certificate. Includes charter pilots with similar certification, and air ambulance and air tour pilots. Excludes regional, national, and international airline pilots.

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Ken Wolter // Shutterstock

#5. Postmasters and mail superintendents

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $87,810 (#9 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 50

National
– Annual mean salary: $79,660
– Employment: 13,880
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ ($96,130)
— Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL ($95,920)
— San Diego-Carlsbad, CA ($92,630)
– Job description: Plan, direct, or coordinate operational, administrative, management, and support services of a U.S. post office; or coordinate activities of workers engaged in postal and related work in assigned post office.

Canva

#4. Transportation inspectors

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $88,670 (#28 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 190

National
– Annual mean salary: $81,320
– Employment: 27,360
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Portland-South Portland, ME ($119,270)
— Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($117,900)
— Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA ($104,370)
– Job description: Inspect equipment or goods in connection with the safe transport of cargo or people. Includes rail transportation inspectors, such as freight inspectors, rail inspectors, and other inspectors of transportation vehicles not elsewhere classified.

michaeljung // Shutterstock

#3. Power plant operators

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $91,910 (#16 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 80

National
– Annual mean salary: $81,890
– Employment: 32,960
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Sacramento–Roseville–Arden-Arcade, CA ($114,420)
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($107,830)
— Redding, CA ($106,030)
– Job description: Control, operate, or maintain machinery to generate electric power. Includes auxiliary equipment operators.

Kelly Ogden // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Transportation, storage, and distribution managers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $94,490 (#175 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 1,460

National
– Annual mean salary: $105,100
– Employment: 132,210
– Metros with highest average pay:
— San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($163,580)
— Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT ($137,680)
— Atlantic City-Hammonton, NJ ($136,410)
– Job description: Plan, direct, or coordinate transportation, storage, or distribution activities in accordance with organizational policies and applicable government laws or regulations. Includes logistics managers.

Lovely Bird // Shutterstock

#1. Power distributors and dispatchers

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN
– Annual mean salary: $100,070 (#10 highest pay among all metros)
– Employment: 40

National
– Annual mean salary: $93,260
– Employment: 9,940
– Metros with highest average pay:
— Sacramento–Roseville–Arden-Arcade, CA ($141,200)
— Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($126,870)
— Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, OR-WA ($120,200)
– Job description: Coordinate, regulate, or distribute electricity or steam.

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