Exploring careers? Take a look at career clusters

If you’re just getting started thinking about what kind of career would be best for you, looking at career clusters is a great place to begin. Career clusters are groups of related types of work. They give you an easy way to explore different kinds of jobs within one broad category. Start with one of the clusters—like health care or construction—to learn what it involves, current trends, and the different careers it offers.

Identifying with a cluster can help you build your career and choose credentials—such as a college degree, specialized training, or certifications—that will qualify you for a variety of different, but related, jobs.

Get started by checking out these career cluster and industry profiles:

Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources

Workers in the agriculture, food, and natural resources cluster produce products and processes—from raising food and textile crops to breeding livestock and hunting wild game; from mining ore below the earth’s surface, to hazardous waste removal and wildlife conservation. Historic trends are giving way to new developments in this cluster.

Architecture and Construction

Architecture and construction are closely related—they both share the purpose of designing and building all kinds of structures, including homes, manufacturing plants, office buildings, streets and highways, sewers, irrigation projects, and more. The construction industry also includes related activities such as painting, electrical work, and plumbing.

Arts, Audio/Video Technology and Communications

Careers in the Arts, Audio/Video Technology, and Communications cluster focus on designing, producing, exhibiting, performing, writing, and publishing multimedia content including visual and performing arts and design, journalism, and entertainment services.

Business Management and Administration

Careers in the Business Management and Administration cluster relate to planning, organizing, directing and evaluating business functions essential to efficient and productive business operations. Careers in leadership, management, and support roles are needed by all types of organizations to operate successfully.

Education and Training

The education and training career cluster focuses on the activities, resources, and locations that provide all kinds of learning services. It includes careers at public and private schools at every level—pre-K through high school—as well as colleges and universities. Occupations at libraries, museums and corporate training services are also part of this cluster.


Careers in the energy industry relate to extracting or harnessing power from a variety of sources, refining it and distributing it, and ensuring its safe use by consumers. With vast supplies of natural resources and ever-improving technologies, the United States is a global leader in the production of energy.


Finance relates to the services involved in financial and investment planning, banking, insurance, and business financial management. The finance and insurance industry is all about managing money and making financial transactions—from a child’s first savings account to multimillion-dollar corporate loans.

Government and Public Administration

Careers in Government and Public Administration relate to planning and performing government functions at the local, state and federal levels, including governance, national security, foreign service, planning, revenue and taxation, and regulations. A primary goal of virtually all careers in public service is to help improve the quality of life and livelihood for the citizens represented, while

Health Science

The primary work of careers in the health science cluster is to treat patients facing illness or injury—whether to cure or rehabilitate from a condition, to maintain wellness, or to provide comfort or palliative care to persons dealing with incurable conditions.

Hospitality and Tourism

Careers in the hospitality and tourism cluster relate to the management, marketing, and operations of restaurants and other food services, lodging, attractions, recreation events, and travel related services.

Human Services

The Human Services career cluster relates to meeting human needs through activities such as counseling and mental health services, family and community services, personal care and consumer services.

Information Technology

Information Technology relates to the design, development, support and management of hardware, software, multimedia and systems integration services. The United States is the world’s largest technology market, and the IT industry is a major contributor to our overall economy.

Law, Public Safety, and Corrections

The law, public safety, corrections, and security career cluster is all about protecting and serving the public. People working in this sector deal with protecting life and property, enforcing laws, providing legal counsel, sentencing defendants, and rehabilitating offenders.


Workers in the manufacturing career cluster produce nearly all the products and equipment used in daily life. Manufacturing is the transformation of raw materials or parts into a new product.


The marketing career cluster includes sales and advertising, and focuses on influencing consumers’ buying behavior and generating sales for products and services. Just about every type of organization, from your corner grocer to regional banks, public universities to multinational corporations, participates in marketing in some way.

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math

Careers in the Science Technology Engineering and Math cluster relate to planning, managing and providing scientific research and professional and technical services such as laboratory and testing services, and research and development services.

Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics

The Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics cluster is all about moving people and things from one location to another quickly, safely, and at a low cost. Workers in this industry design transportation systems, operate or repair equipment, plan how to move materials, and take care of storing products. Transportation systems included in this cluster include aircraft, railroad, waterways, over the road, and pipelines.

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