Rather than base career choices on the latest fad, young Pinoys should go for in-demand jobs, the Labor chief said, as she bared the top 10 highest-paying occupations in the Philippines.
"Graduating high school students, and the seniors following them should realize this early the significance of making wise and excellent career decisions," Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz said in a statement Friday.
"I also advice them to refrain from choosing courses based on what's in vogue or fashionable, or, to use the popular social lingo of the youth, what's 'trending' and popular," she added.
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Her statement comes as hundreds of thousands of high school students are again expected to graduate in less than two months, many of whom are seen to pursue higher education and join the labor force.
"[Students] themselves can help resolve the jobs and skills mismatch problem by pursuing courses and skills that would easily fit them into jobs or entrepreneurship opportunities," Baldoz said.
Some of the highest-paying jobs over the last five years are in fact among unpopular choices, the Labor chief said, citing data from the Bureau of Local Employment.
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These occupations are in the fields of creative industries, aviation, banking and finance, business process outsourcing, cyber services, manufacturing and mining.
Over the last five years, workers in the following occupations got the top wages in the country:
Art director: P69,286
Aircraft pilot/navigator/flight engineer: P57,789
Mining/metallurgical engineer: P55,638
Computer programmer: P43,573
Systems analyst/designer: P42,112
Production supervisor/general foreman: P36,133
Call center representative/customer service associate: P35,424
The top 10 jobs, the statement said, are determined through the median monthly basic pay and allowances of time-rate full-time workers in non-agricultural firms with at least 20 employees.
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The salaries cited are not entry-level wages, however, with the BLE noting that occupants of the highest-paying positions need to at least have bachelor's degrees related to the field.
"As for other positions in cyber-services, business process outsourcing, and manufacturing companies, college degree is not an essential requirement," the statement quoted the BLE study as saying.
"Completion of high school diploma coupled with years of experience is sufficient," it added.
BLE data, the statement said, also showed that the current Pinoy workforce today is "composed of young, creative, and dynamic people who can work from anywhere anytime."
Even those unable to enroll in college are urged not to lose hope, with Baldoz urging them to look into technical-vocational courses as equally viable options.