The toughest jobs to fill in America

By Jena Johnson - bio | email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - The recession's been a bumpy ride for countless Americans, but finding the right path can lead to a stable job.

"I'm no professional as far as predicting the market and stuff, but if you have a technical degree, you're definitely more of an asset to your company," said Leland Remson, engineer design intern at Lufkin Industries.

Remson is studying to become an engineer, earning college credit while employed at Lufkin Industries. "You want to have job security when you graduate," said Remson.

He thinks becoming an engineer will give him that. In fact, for two years, engineer is the hardest job to fill nationwide. It's a field that requires formal training in math and science. "I enjoy solving problems, I think that's the best way to help people, help the world," said Remson.

"With the need for the United States to catch up in our technology areas, there's a high demand for the engineering fields and technology fields," said Michael Fore, drafstman at Lufkin Industries.

Fore recognized that demand. He graduated in June from Angelina College. "They touch on all the bases for all the different jobs that are available in the drafting industry," said Fore.

Working in constuction for years, Fore's life took an unexpected turn when he was injured on the job. "I would not be employed today in this industry at all if I hadn't had that training at Angelina College," said Fore.

If college isn't an option, many people turn to skilled labor, which is the third toughest job to fill in America.

Ryan Miller and John Henderson work together to create decorative stone. "We're trying to make things look like stone, like regular stone and we're using concrete so we have to add colors to them and do things like that," said Henderson.

Henderson said his job is a craft. On-the-job training prepared him for work. "Creating something and then having somebody come and get it, people like what we do that's my favorite part," said Henderson.

These in-demand jobs require varying training and skill, but Remson said if you have the mindset to succeed, you can find work. "If you want to know how something works and if you want to go in and really fix something, then maybe this is for you," said Remson.