15 Best Paying Jobs in California in 2023

The cost of living in California is high and choosing the right career path is necessary as your choice shapes your finances and entire life. We understand the importance of money in a career choice and have carefully outlined California’s best paying jobs.

However, money shouldn’t be the major factor in choosing a career; rather, it should be desire and passion.

Notwithstanding, we explore the best paying jobs in California, USA; the salary, job description, and requirements.

Curious to know more? Then let’s ride on!

Can I Get The Best Paying Jobs In California Without A Degree?

Yes, you can get some of the best paying jobs in California without a degree certification. 

However, there may be other requirements. 

Below is an outline of some of the best paying jobs in California without a degree, according to indeed.com.

  • Police officer- $73,852 a year
  • Nuclear power reactor operator- $73,649 a year
  • Boilermaker- $77,003 a year
  • Web developer- $77,742 a year
  • Front desk manager- $78,173 a year
  • Distribution Manager- $78,244 a year
  • Massage therapist- $83,107 a year
  • Tanker Driver- $84,532 a year
  • HVAC Supervisor- $86,000 a year
  • Pilot- $98,943 a year

What are the 15 Best Paying Jobs in California?

Here is an outline of the 15 best paying jobs in California:

  1. Commercial Divers
  2. Podiatrists
  3. Petroleum Engineering
  4. Library Science Teachers, Postsecondary
  5. Air Traffic Controllers
  6. Pharmacists
  7. Economics Teachers
  8. Nuclear Engineers
  9. Financial Managers
  10. Nurse Midwives
  11. Mining and Geological Engineers, Including Mining Safety Engineers
  12. Astronomers
  13. Managers
  14. Nurse Practitioners
  15. Human Resources Managers

#15. Human Resources Manager

Salary: $143,060

The human resource manager is a professional who oversees the administrative and organizational functions of a corporation, company, or business. 

A Human resource manager stands as a bridge between the company’s management and the workers.

The Human resource manager often heads the Human Resource Department and ensures the smooth running of the company.

Also, a human resource manager facilitates a company’s recruiting and employment process. In addition, they handle disputes and oversee disciplinary measures.

However, a human resource manager’s profession is crucial and often finds it in all work environments. 

Generally, the human resource manager is after the comfort of the employees and the effective running of the company. 

To be a human resource manager, one needs to have specific soft skills essential in human relations. Those skills are patience, organization, ethics and morals, and excellent leadership skills. 

In addition, a human resource manager should have the proper educational training to garner the experience needed for the smooth running of an organization.

However, a BSc is the minimum educational requirement for a Human Resource Manager position. 

Furthermore, some other educational attainments build up an aspiring HR’s potential.

To learn more about these skills and certifications, check out: cousera.org.

You Should Check Out: Hr Generalist Job Description Template For 2023

#14. Nurse Practitioner

Salary: $155, 305

The Nurse Practitioner career is one of the best paying jobs in California. 

A Nurse Practitioner is a certified nurse with a graduate degree in advanced nursing.

A nurse practitioner is also known as an advanced registered nurse practitioner. 

These professionals are responsible for offering a wide range of acute, primary, and specialty care services. 

A Nurse practitioner works in hospitals and care clinics; they tend to sick patients from admission to discharge. 

However, Nurse practitioners often specialize in specific medical areas like orthopedics, oncology, psychiatry, pediatrics, etc.

To be a Nurse practitioner, one needs to earn a BSc in nursing and an MSc in nursing or a doctor of nursing practice degree. 

Furthermore, an aspiring nurse practitioner must pass a standardized exam to get certification from the specialty nursing board.

In addition, a nurse practitioner must attain a practice license from their state.

You can also read: 30 High Paying Career Changes For Nurses in 2023 

#13. Managers

Salary: $155,881

A manager is responsible for taking up a leadership role in an organization and managing a team of workers.

There are different types of managers with varying work description and duties.

Managers often serve as a communication bridge between a company’s executives and employees.

In addition, a manager is responsible for training the company’s workers, making decisions, managing the budget, conducting performance reviews, hiring new employees, etc.

However, in some cases, a manager is in charge of a specific department in a company, which means that a company can have more than one manager heading different departments.

To be a Manager, one needs to have specific skills like leadership, communication, relationship-building, decision-making, customer service, etc. 

Regarding educational attainments, a manager needs to have a minimum certification of BSc in a discipline relating to their department. 

You can read also: Assistant Project Manager Salary | How much do assistant project managers make?

#12. Astronomers

Salary: $155,948

An Astronomer is a scientist in astronomy who studies the earth and the area outside the earth’s planet. 

They study the universe and astronomical objects like the stars, moons, etc., within it.

Astronomers are analytical and observational in their study of the universe and astronomical objects. 

In addition, the profession of an astronomer is one of the best paying jobs in California.

To be an astronomer, one must have a minimum of a bachelor’s and master’s degree in a physical science discipline. An astronomer can acquire a doctorate in physics or astronomy for more advantages. 

Aside from knowing basic science and physics, astronomers must have impressive mathematical knowledge. 

You can also read: High Paying Career Opportunities In Science

#11. Mining

Salary: $157,595

One of the best hourly paying jobs in California is Mining. This career involves extracting valuable minerals or other geological materials from the earth. 

A miner is a professional specializing in working in a mine or engaging in other mining procedures.

A miner works on extracting natural resources, like gold, ore, clay, etc., from the earth. 

There are over 600 active mines in California that employ over 5,000 people. Although due to the nature of the job, it may not seem lucrative, it is one of California best paying jobs.

To work in the mining industry, one needs to receive an on-the-job experience from licensed miners. The apprenticeship training requirement varies. However, it often is a minimum of 40 hours of classroom training and six months of on-the-job training. 

Regarding education requirements, a high school diploma is a minimum requirement to become a miner.

However, other degrees, courses, and classes can give one more tremendous advantage. 

To find out more about mining requirements and certifications, check out indeed.com.

#10. Nurse Midwives

Salary: 160,258

The Nurse-Midwives profession is one of the best paying jobs in the USA.

Nurse Midwives are skilled health professionals who practice in a wide variety of clinical areas. They diagnose, treat, and also refer patients to a specialist.

Nurse Midwives also care for women during pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period.

Nurse Midwives enlighten women on safe and natural birth techniques that are healthy and better.

They also tend to women who are going through menopause or perimenopause. 

To become a nurse midwife, you need to have a minimum requirement of a midwife degree.

In addition, you must complete a nursing national accredited program and pass a national certification exam.

You can also read: How Much Money Do Surgeons Make?

#9. Financial Managers

Salary: $161,267

According to labourmarketinfo.edu, one of the best paying jobs in California is the profession of a financial manager. 

A financial manager takes care of one of the most crucial and complex parts of a company: finance.

The financial manager is professional personnel who specializes in financial managerial matters and takes care of a company’s financial business. 

A financial manager should be calculative, analytical, and able to foresight. 

Financial managers are responsible for drafting and following procedures to raise funds, allocate funds, plan inflows and outflows, etc.

To qualify for one of the best paying jobs in the USA, you need to attain a minimum educational requirement of a bachelor’s degree.

In addition, an aspiring financial manager may need five years or more experience in a business or economic occupation.

You can also read: Is Finance a Good Career Path | 2023

#8. Nuclear Engineers

Salary: $160,382

In the area of nuclear engineering, the field involves the science and application of nuclear and radiation processes for different purposes.

The nuclear engineers profession is one of the best paying jobs in California

Furthermore, Nuclear engineers research and develop the procedures, equipment, and systems used to leverage nuclear energy and radiation. 

They make findings on how to use radioactive materials for medical and industrial purposes.

Nuclear engineers design and build nuclear power stations. They work in multidisciplinary segments to provide technical solutions.

To become a Nuclear engineer, you need to have the minimum requirement of a bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering or a related field. 

However, a nuclear engineer may not need a license to enter the occupation. 

#7. Economics Teachers

Salary: $161,138

An economics teacher is a professional who specializes in teaching students about finance and the economy. 

They teach lessons on topics like microeconomics, macroeconomics, and math of economics.

Economics is ever-changing; an economics teacher needs to be knowledgeable about economic trends and should also be able to teach through understandable techniques.

To become an economics teacher, one needs to have the essential educational qualification; a degree in economics or a related discipline. 

However, you will need a teaching license if you want to teach higher school students. 

Meeting the responsibilities and duties of an economics teacher needs some prerequisites: math skills, interpersonal skills, creativity skills, and the ability to capture and engage student interest. 

#6. Pharmacists

Salary: $161,542

A pharmacist is a health personnel which controls, formulates, preserves, and administers medications. A pharmacist also provides medical advice and counseling on the intake of medicine. 

In addition to their responsibilities, pharmacists serve as primary health care providers.

To be a Pharmacist, you need to attain the basic educational requirements, which is a degree in the discipline.

In addition, to be a legitimate pharmacist, you must be registered with the GPhC and get a license to practice.

#5. Air Traffic Controllers

Salary: $162,407

Air traffic controllers are professionals specializing in the safe and orderly flow of air traffic in the global system. 

They work in air traffic control centers, control towers, and on the ground. 

Air traffic controllers monitor aircraft’s position, speed, and altitude in their assigned airspace visually and by radar; they also give directions to pilots via radio.

To be an air traffic controller in California, you need to be a US citizen, be up to age 30, pass a medical examination and security investigation and know how to speak English fluently.

You must acquire an associate’s or bachelor’s degree from an Air Traffic Collegiate Training Initiative (AT-CTI) program.

To learn more about the job requirement of an air traffic controller, check out indeed.com.

You can also read: 15 Best Paying Jobs in Air Freight in 2023

#4. Library Science Teacher Post Secondary

Salary: $162,609

Library science teachers are teaching professionals who teach library science courses.

 The Library science teacher profession consists of teachers who engage in lecturing and teachers who do both teaching and research.

Library science teacher at the post-secondary level is one of the best paying jobs in California, and they work in private and public colleges and universities.

Professionals in this field need to be the know-how of developments in the library science field by reading current literature, conversing with fellow scholars, researching, giving presentations at conferences, etc.

Being a library science teacher requires a master’s degree or a doctorate in library science.

#3. Petroleum Engineers

Salary: $163,272

The Petroleum engineering career is among the best paying jobs in the USA. 

A Petroleum engineer designs and develops procedures to extract oil and gas resources from beneath the earth’s surface.

Petroleum engineers drill hydrocarbons in the most efficient way. They also aim to resolve or manage any operating disaster or issue that may affect the environment.

To specialize in Petroleum engineering, you need to obtain a bachelor’s degree in petroleum engineering or a related field.

You can also read:What is Career Readiness and Why is it Important?

#2. Podiatrists

Salary: $165,085

A Podiatrist is a medical personnel who specializes in solving medical disorders in the lower leg. 

They treat disorders of the foot, ankle, and other lower leg parts using nonsurgical and surgical approaches.

Podiatrists treat lower leg injuries and complications arising from health issues like diabetes.

To be a Podiatrist, one needs to acquire a bachelor’s degree in biology or a similar field of science.

They head to a Podiatry school to study how bones, nerves, and muscles work together, illness, and injuries that can affect the lower leg. 

After attending a Podiatry school, a student graduate goes for residency in a hospital for three years, where they practice what they have learned. 

#1. Commercial Divers

Salary: $165,209

Commercial diving is an excellent option for those who love diving from our list of best paying jobs in California. 

A commercial diver’s job is to go underwater to carry out specific tasks.

These professionals conduct underwater search and rescue, salvage, recovery, or cleanup.

To be a commercial diver, you need to gain mastery in the use of diving materials and effective use of hand tools, power tools, and welding equipment. 

A commercial diver should have excellent organization, communication, and teamwork skills. An aspiring commercial diver should be able to dive into the water, stay underwater for a prolonged time, and lift 25 pounds at a time.

In addition, a commercial diver should also know how to operate still and video cameras.

In terms of education and experience, a commercial diver should have a minimum of a high school diploma and certification from a completed course in an accredited commercial diver course. 

Also, two years of experience in a related field is required.

Commercial diving is also one of the best paying jobs in the USA.

You can also read: 10 Highest Paying Jobs In The World


Choosing a career should be born out of passion and desire, not just monetary value.

However, we hope we have been helpful in your quest to find California’s best paying jobs.

Frequently Asked Questions

What jobs pay a lot of money in California?

There are several jobs that pay a lot of money in California, below are some of them:

Airtline Pilots
Commercial Divers

What is the best-demand job in California?

Truck driver
Shift manager
Customer service representative
Retail sales associate
Registered nurse
Delivery driver
Sales associate

Which are the best-paying job in California in 2023

Commercial Divers
Petroleum Engineering
Library Science Teachers, Postsecondary
Air Traffic Controllers
Financial Managers
Economics Teachers
Nuclear Engineers
Nurse Midwives

What is the number 1 most paid job?

The best paying job in California is the job of a Commercial diver. 
A Commercial diver earns an average salary of $165,209, making it one of the best paying jobs in the USA. 



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