New Mexico, Hawaii, Arkansas, and Minnesota are all in store for a huge increase in the number of personal-care aide jobs. Iowa, Mississippi, Ohio, and North Carolina are bracing for a surge in industrial organization psychologists. Elsewhere, things are more idiosyncratic. The growth job in Washington is massage therapy. In Rhode Island, it's biomedical engineers. In Kentucky, it's commercial pilots.
That's what the US Department of Labor thinks, at any rate.* Their CareerInfoNet website lets you look up the fastest-growing job in any state, so I did — for all fifty states.
Check it all out below — mouse over for a zoom, or click here for a big map:
This is a pure question of growth rates, often from a low base. Just because the government is expecting a large percentage increase in the number of geographers in Utah and interpreters in Maine doesn't mean those will actually be plentiful jobs. A few of the occupational categories you'll see on this map are ones that employ large masses of people, but many of them are highly specialized.
* Something to note about this data is that when the government breaks it down into exact numbers of people, it's always rounded to the nearest 10. So when you're talking about rare jobs, you sometimes get a weird result. In Iowa, for example, it says there will be 75 percent growth in Industrial Organization Psychologists from 10 to 10. That probably means they're model estimates growth from 8 to 14, with both 8 and 14 rounded to 10.