Artificial intelligence, big data, cannabis legalization, climate change, and the aging population are just a few of the fields that are shaping the careers of the future. For graduate students, this means that exciting prospects and new career opportunities lie ahead. Here are a few of the top predicted science careers based on projected demand in 2020. You can read more about these careers and other career-related events in Canada by visiting

1. Renewable Energy Technicians, Engineers, and Scientists

Description: Given the current climate change crisis, professionals in the field of renewable energies are urgently needed. These careers may include renewable energy technicians, engineers, or climate scientists. Duties range from developing, ensuring, to testing efficient functioning of equipment that collects, generates, or distributes power through alternative means (e.g. solar and wind energy).

Median pay range: $42,000-130,000

Education/training: A technician will need a high-school or college diploma in a related field. An engineer will need at least a bachelor’s degree and a scientist will likely have a PhD degree.

2. Pharmacist

Description: The increasing number of retail stores with pharmacy services, coupled with the fact that more pharmacy workers are set to retire in the coming years, will put pharmacists in greater demand. Pharmacists are drug experts who dispense medications, counsel patients on the use of each drug, and coordinate pharmaceutical care with physicians and other healthcare providers for their patients. 

Median pay range: $90,000-110,000

Education/training: Two years minimum of an undergraduate program including science courses, followed by a four-year professional degree pharmacy program and registration with a provincial or territorial regulatory authority.

3. Registered Nurse/Nurse Practitioner

Description: As the population ages, more and more Canadians will require help from healthcare professionals. Nurse practitioners, including physician assistants and midwives, may work in a hospital, community centre, or nursing home. Duties range from administering treatments to the coordination of care from healthcare professionals (physicians, physiotherapists, occupational therapists) and researchers.

Median pay range: $70,000-105,000

Education/training: Registered nurses need, at a minimum, a Bachelor’s degree in nursing, while nurse practitioners need at least a master’s degree or advanced diploma.