New 100 “best jobs” list for 2016: Orthodontist? Cop?

Student dentists work quickly on a patient while she is sedated.

Student dentists work on a sedated patient.

Working on mouths is apparently one of the best jobs you can get.

At least that’s what U.S. News & World Report concludes in its just released list of “100 Best Jobs of 2016.” Topping the list is orthodontist, followed by dentist.

Actually, the list is chock full of health careers. With the exception of computer systems analyst at No. 3, all the others in the top ten are in the health arena: nurse anesthetist (try saying that with peanut butter in your mouth), physician assistant, nurse practitioner, psychiatrist, pediatrician, anesthesiologist and obstetrician/gynecologist.

U.S. News looked for jobs with good pay, limited stress, work/life balance, plenty of hiring, opportunities for advancement and a bit of a challenge.

The list’s biggest surprise may be No. 21: Cartographer.

The bottom of the U.S. News top 100 includes “patrol officer,” which it puts one rung above “survey researcher.”

Of course, lists of best jobs depend on the subjective selection of what’s being measured. And the landscape changes as the economy and job demands shift. Employers increasingly are using metrics to squeeze more out of workers, as I wrote in this Unofficial Business column last year on the numberfication of our work lives.

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