Life on the other side of the border could look much different for an American in Canada, particularly when it comes to good-paying jobs. As for high-paying careers, the U.S.'s northern neighbor actually has a higher average take-home wage, making it the ninth-best in the world. To compare, the U.S. came in 11th place.
If you're considering whether to stay or go, here are the highest paying jobs in these bordering countries.
Thinking about moving to Canada, eh?
The U.S. dollar stretches a bit further up north, but there are more taxes, which actually pays for the country's healthcare system that so many Americans believe to be entirely free. In fact, a recent study with data used from Statistics Canada and the Canadian Institute for Health Information showed that a Canadian family of four will pay $12,057 for healthcare in 2017. That number isn't static, however — what a Canadian pays in taxes varies by the person or family's circumstances.
Here's a breakdown of the top-paying jobs in Canada and what people in these roles could earn in American dollars.
1. Economic development director
Salary: $114,400 CAD ($92,716 USD)
If you're after the highest paying jobs north of the U.S. border, an economic development director is one of the best jobs in terms of pay. An economic development director is a government managerial position. These individuals evaluate, plan and implement a variety of economic and community plans or services. Their work can involve collecting data on the region they work for as it pertains to taxation, labor markets, transportation, agriculture or business growth.
A bachelor's degree in economics, business administration, commerce or public administration is typically required — as well as several years of experience. A job applicant could gain a competitive edge with a master's in economics, as well.
2. Utilities manager
Salary: $112,320 CAD ($91,030 USD)
Also known as a public works director, a utilities manager oversees the operations and maintenance of the systems responsible for water, electrical power and natural gas within a community. This role is among the highest paying careers in Canada.
A bachelor's degree is commonly required in a related area, such as electrical engineering — experience as a supervisor is required to move up, though. Generally, utility workers are at a higher risk of injury and illness than other professions in the U.S., according to the U.S. Department of Labor.
3. Public administration director
Salary: $106,662 CAD ($86,445 USD)
There are the people that make law and the people who enforce the law. In between, however, are public administrators that handle other work, such as running elections or maintaining relations between various levels of government. Public administrators might also develop government policies and programs or serve on or organize committees for projects.
A bachelor's degree is required to pursue this profession. A graduate degree in public policy or law is an added bonus, however. Don't expect to work with top bureaucrats from the start, though. Initially, you'll have to work your way to the top, which might require years of experience.
4. Real estate and financial manager
Salary: $103,376 CAD ($83,781 USD)
Forget driving all over for showings that a real estate sales agent might handle — real estate and financial managers are in charge of the daily operations of the firms, which includes overseeing the business operations and evaluating its needs. Some might also be involved in brokering mortgages, commodities trading or insurance, as well.
In order to work as a real estate and financial manager, a bachelor's degree in business administration, finance or a similar degree is recommended. In addition to having the right degree, a job candidate must also have experience and a license.
Salary: $102,398 CAD ($82,989 USD)
A pharmacist dispenses pills and advises patients and health professionals about proper dosage, side effects and pill interactions. The career is growing, with high demand in hospitals and community pharmacies due to senior population growth, according to Business Canada.
In order to pursue a pharmacy career in Canada, you must hold a bachelor's degree in pharmacy, work under a pharmacist for additional training and obtain a license.
6. Mining & forestry manager
Salary: $100,006 CAD ($81,050 USD)
These professionals work in Canada's Department of Natural Resources. They are responsible for managing facilities such as fisheries, lumber mills and mines. Mining and forestry managers also hire and train new personnel and make sure work sites are properly equipped.
A degree in earth sciences, geology, petroleum engineering or mining engineering is required for this managerial role as well as years of experience. With a growing demand for wood products, there should be increased opportunities for these professionals.
7. Pipefitting supervisor
Salary: $89,398 CAD ($72,453 USD)
This individual supervises workers who manufacture and assemble piping systems in homes and commercial or industrial facilities, including heat, oil and water systems. Their responsibilities can include selecting and testing materials and making sure everything is operating smoothly and employees are safe. To obtain this supervisory position, a person needs at least a college degree coupled with an apprenticeship and certification.
Salary: $88,524 CAD ($71,745 USD)
Lawyers help clients with a broad range of legal matters. They can represent clients in court cases, incorporate companies, or simply advise and counsel. Just like in the U.S., Canadian law practice requires a number of years in school.
First, you'll need to complete a bachelor's degree, then pass the LSAT and attend law school. Then, you must tackle the Canadian bar exam in the province in which you wish to practice.
9. Telecommunications manager
Salary: $86,528 CAD ($70,127 USD)
Telecommunications managers oversee telecommunications companies, including the operation and maintenance of facilities. Such work can involve network installation and checking for regulation compliance.
A college degree in a related field, such as science or electrical engineering, is required to enter the profession. Years of experience, particularly in a supervisory role, are also a general requirement.
According to Canada Business, most of these individuals are employed in Quebec and Ontario and obtain their positions through promotions. Although the information communications technology field is growing as a whole, demand is lower for these professionals.
10. Nurse practitioner
Salary: $84,510 CAD ($68,491 USD)
A nurse practitioner has more authority than a registered nurse. They can diagnose illnesses, order and interpret diagnostic tests, prescribe medicine, and perform specific procedures if they've completed the proper education.
If you wish to pursue a nurse practitioner career path, you must complete a college degree program in nursing and complete further training — a master's degree in nursing is also acceptable. Employers expect these individuals to have experience as a registered nurse, according to Canada Business.
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