|Unemployment by field of study - from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics|
In good economic times, most professional fields enjoy a relatively low rate of unemployment, below 3 percent. But in bad economic times, engineering and business fields take the brunt of the professional layoffs. Management of course tends to stay below the previous two since they're the ones doing the layoffs. The absolute best job security is in the healthcare and legal fields. The following table is a more detailed view of the data, including more professions.
|Unemployment rate by field detailed table - from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics|
Notable fields are the construction industry which hit 20% unemployment in 2010, followed by the farming industry close behind at 16%. For those who may be curious about the actual numbers of workers involved, here they are (click to enlarge). Be sure to compare these to the number of people graduating each year by field of study.
|Employment numbers by field - from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics|
Next up are the salaries for these fields and the trends over the last 10 years.