4 High-Paying Careers That Still Make A Difference

Frequently, people think of a successful career in two very different ways. On one hand, many people see success as earning a large salary. On the other, you have people who see career success as being measured by the good you do for the world around you. This is something that countless people have debated either within themselves or others without one side being the clear winner. In our world that is so defined by being successful, choosing one side or the other can be an incredibly difficult task without an answer.


However, these two ideas do not have to be mutually exclusive. Nothing says you have to starve in order to help others. In fact, many of the most helpful careers are also ones where you can earn a comfortable living. These diverse career options mean that you can find ways to do good that fit your interests, skills, and passions without scraping by financially. Here are some careers that bridge this gap between fiscal and altruistic success.


Nursing is one of the best careers to get into if you want to help people. You get to directly work with people that are in great need, and because of the continually growing nursing shortage, it is one of the most in-demand fields currently. With many different options and specialties available, nurses can make choices about the type of work they want to do, and align that with their passions. Whether you want to work with the elderly, children, or a multitude of other specialties, you will be able to make a positive difference in the world and help people that truly need it, while still making a very good living.

While many people think of nurses as underpaid and overworked, they still make a very solid living, with the average nurse salary being over $70,000. There are also many options for nurses to advance their career and greatly increase their earnings while still helping people. For instance, a nurse can decide to further their education and become a Nurse Practitioner, which comes with a substantial salary increase, among other benefits.


If you have a passion for education, and want to make a living helping others in their pursuit of knowledge, then being a librarian may be your calling. Librarians do a whole lot more than just put books away and remind people to be quiet. They have a wide range of responsibilities, including assisting in research, coordinating public events, and teaching classes.

Not only do librarians fill a vital role in society and help people on a daily basis, they also have great potential for earning an impressive salary, with the top of the field earning more than $85,000 a year. Being a librarian is a great way to make a positive influence on the community around you while still being monetarily rewarded for your good work.


Helping animals can be one of the most rewarding experiences possible. This is because animals are frequently both very helpless and unconditionally loving. Vets also get the joy of not only helping the sick or injured animal, but that animal’s owner as well. There is also a great deal of flexibility within the veterinary field, with the option to choose between different specializing in treating different types of animals, or conducting research.

Becoming a veterinarian requires a great deal of school and training, but fortunately, this hard work is rewarded with salaries that average over $98,000. With the diverse options available to you as a vet, as well as a highly rewarding salary, you can make a difference in the ways that most interest you while being comfortable financially.

Nonprofit Program Manager

If you enjoy doing good in the world, but some of these more niche fields aren’t quite right for you, then working in the nonprofit sector might be right for you. There are countless non-profit organizations that do great things for a multitude of causes, and you can find one that best suits your interests and beliefs.

While you may have to start off low on the chain, either by volunteering or an entry level job, if you can work your way up within an organization, you have great opportunities to make important decisions about your organization, and help shape the kind of work they do. This can be incredibly difficult work, but it pays off both spiritually, and financially, with salaries typically ranging up to almost $90,000.

While it may seem like in order to have a career that does good in our world, you have to sacrifice financial stability, there are actually many career options where having a positive impact is rewarded financially. These jobs frequently require a great deal of work and training, but the difference you make is absolutely worth it, especially considering the added financial benefits.  Nurses, Librarians, Veterinarians, and Non-Profit Program Managers are just some examples of these rewarding career paths, and there are many others. This means that, regardless of how you want to change the world around you, there are highly successful careers for you to consider. If you want to use your career to help others, you can still make a good living.

Author Bio

Zachary Evans is a freelance writer from Boise, Idaho, who writes about a wide variety of topics he is interested in. He graduated from Boise State University with a Bachelor's Degree in English with an Emphasis in Creative Writing in 2013, and now spends his time writing, reading, playing music, and dreaming about being a space explorer. You can follow him on Twitter: @ZacharyMEvans

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