The highest and lowest paying jobs of 2016

Are you ready to feel really good about the amount of money you earn — or, really bad?

Here is CareerCast's list of this year's highest-paying and the lowest-paying jobs. Click through to find out if you have one of the worst or best jobs of 2016.

10 Lowest-Paying Jobs of 2016

If your goal is to make a lot of money, steer clear of these jobs. Many are in the service industry, but you might be surprised at the variety of the lowest-paying careers. Take a look, and click all the way through to see the No. 1 lowest-paying job of 2016.

Check out the jobs to avoid in the slideshow below:

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10 Lowest-Paying Jobs of 2016
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10 Lowest-Paying Jobs of 2016

10. Taxi Driver

  • Annual Median Pay: $23,218
  • Growth Outlook, 2014-2024: 13%

Now you know why some taxi drivers are probably in bad moods and drive like they just failed road rage school — they really don’t make that much. Not enough to sit in traffic and deal with backseat drivers all day anyway. The good news is they typically have flexible hours and can get tips.

See: Jobs That Will Be Extinct by 2030

Photo credit: Getty

9. Retail Sales Person

  • Annual Median Pay: $22,206
  • Growth Outlook, 2014-2024: 7%

You're most likely not going to get rich selling clothes or car parts. But, of course, the wage number doesn’t tell the entire story. Many salespeople earn commission on top of their hourly pay.

If you have a knack for sales, consider a side job at a direct sales company. Not only do these positions provide extra income, but they can be great jobs for stay-at-home parents as well.

Photo credit: Getty

8. Home Health Aide

  • Annual Median Pay: $21,176
  • Growth Outlook, 2014-2024: 38%

Home health aides might be among the lowest-paying jobs of 2016, but they have job security. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, because of the aging baby boomer generation, this job will be in demand. And an aging population will need help with daily activities and keeping health problems in control.

Photo credit: Getty

7. Animal-Care Service Worker

  • Annual Median Pay: $20,200
  • Growth Outlook, 2014-2024: 11%

These people work in places like zoos, veterinary clinics, aquariums, pet stores and more, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Although you might not make a lot, at least you don't have to go through too much schooling. Many animal care and service workers just need to have a high school diploma, according to the BLS. And you'll earn bonus points if you have experience working with animals.

Photo credit: Getty

6. Maid

  • Annual Median Pay: $20,194
  • Growth Outlook, 2014-2014: NA

The people who clean bathrooms and leave those delicious mints on your pillow barely make more than $20,000 a year. But according to the BLS, some of the top-paying states for maids and housekeepers include New York, Hawaii and Nevada.

See: Best and Worst States for Families to Live a Richer Life

Photo credit: Getty

5. Child Care Worker

  • Annual Median Pay: $20,183
  • Growth Outlook, 2014-2024: 5%

It might seem a little odd that we pay the people who watch our children so little. Child care workers do everything from watching over and reading to toddlers to helping school-aged kids with their homework.

Photo credit: Getty

4. Bartender

  • Annual Median Pay: $19,214
  • Growth Outlook, 2014-2024: 10%

They say that bartenders are some of the best counselors. Unfortunately, they get nowhere near the pay. Instead, they get to deal with drunks, clean up spilled beer and break up the occasional fight. Thank goodness these hard workers get tips.

Photo credit: Getty

3. Server

  • Annual Median Pay: $19,200
  • Growth Outlook, 2014-2024: 3%

Thankfully, most servers earn a combination of wages and tips. With a median pay that's less than $20,000 year, waiters and waitresses work hard — and often long hours — ensuring you have a great experience at a restaurant. So the next time you get the bill, remember to tip your server appropriately.

Photo credit: Getty

2. Cashier

  • Annual Median Pay: $19,167
  • Growth Outlook, 2014-2024: 2%

As the second lowest-paying job of 2016, cashiers arguably don’t get the money they deserve. If you’ve ever been in a line at the grocery store or department store when a fast and friendly cashier means the difference between beating rush hour or two hours of public radio, you’ll agree.

Photo credit: Getty

1. Dishwasher

  • Annual Median Pay: $19,141
  • Growth Outlook: NA

With an annual pay that's less than some college tuition, dishwasher is the lowest-paying job of 2016.

Photo credit: Getty

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10 Highest-Paying Jobs of 2016

Unsurprisingly, most of the highest-paying jobs of 2016 require quite a bit of schooling. But for those who could tough it out, they could pull in a minimum of six figures. Here are CareerCast's 10 highest-paying jobs of the year.

Take a look at the elite jobs in the slideshow below:

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10 Highest-Paying Jobs of 2016
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10 Highest-Paying Jobs of 2016

10. Data Scientist

  • Annual Median Pay: $128,240
  • Growth Outlook (through 2024): 16%

These days, it seems every company is collecting data — on everything. It’s called big data, and the challenge is not gathering it so much as making sense of it all. That’s what data scientists do. And when you can do it well, you get paid well.

Photo credit: Getty

9. Petroleum Engineer

  • Annual Median Pay: $129,990
  • Growth Outlook (through 2024): 10%

Petroleum engineers are often ranked as the best jobs in terms of salary, especially for master's graduates. These are the folks who design and develop ways to extract oil and gas from the Earth. They also get to work with other cool professionals, such as geoscientists, to find the best methods for particular locations.

Photo credit: Getty

8. Orthodontist

  • Annual Median Pay: $131,214
  • Growth Outlook (through 2024): 18%

Let’s face it, a lot of us are not born with a perfect smile. That’s when the orthodontist steps in. And parents, you know how much that can cost — anywhere from $3,000 to $10,000, according to Oral-B.

Photo credit: Getty

7. Dentist

  • Annual Median Pay: $155,267
  • Growth Outlook (through 2024): 18%

Dentists do pretty well for themselves. Getting into dental school can be very competitive. And while you might think of these professionals as torture artists, they do make the world a lot brighter. Pearly white bright, to be exact.

Photo credit: Getty

6. Corporate Executive (Senior)

  • Annual Median Pay: $173,256
  • Growth Outlook (through 2024): 6%

Regardless of the industry, corporations need someone running the show, planning, strategizing. It’s all in a day’s work for top executives. But if you want to get this job, get ready for some hard work. More than half worked more than 40 hours a week in 2014, according to the BLS.

Photo credit: Getty

5. Physician (General Practice)

  • Annual Median Pay: $199,155
  • Growth Outlook (through 2024): 14%

Yes, caring for others pays off in more ways than one. Of course, by the time you get to hang those degrees on your wall, you’ll have earned them. According to the BLS, most physicians complete a four-year bachelor’s degree, four years of medical school, and three to seven years in an internship and residency.

Photo credit: Getty

4. Public Relations Executive (Senior)

  • Annual Median Pay: $201,250
  • Growth Outlook (through 2024): 7%

Do you put a positive spin on everything from your bad hair day to that clunker you call a “vintage automobile”? You could be perfect for pulling down some serious green as a public relations exec.

These people work to enhance their clients’ images through ad campaigns, working with the press and more. And since image is everything in our Instagram world, they get paid nicely.

Photo credit: Getty

3. Military General

  • Annual Median Pay: $205,144
  • Growth Outlook: NA

If you’ve got your sights on becoming a U.S. general, prepare to get as many bucks as salutes. Just know there’s a good chance bad guys with guns will be involved.

Photo credit: Getty

2. Psychiatrist

  • Annual Median Pay: $207,153
  • Growth Outlook (through 2024): 14%

Like talking about other people’s problems? That trait could help a lot with this profession. After a heck of a lot of schooling, psychiatrists treat patients using a variety of methods, like psychotherapy, psychoanalysis, hospitalization and medication. In return, patients treat psychiatrists with a lot of money.

Photo credit: Getty

1. Surgeon

  • Annual Median Pay: $357,192
  • Growth Outlook (through 2024): 14%

Okay, so in addition to a lot of green flowing your way, you’ll also have to be okay with a lot of red — as in blood red. But get past that, and you can operate and save some lives.

Photo credit: Getty

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