Jobs that Involve Sharks

Have you ever wanted to study sharks for a living? There are a number of careers that can offer you the opportunity to work with these animals, either directly or indirectly. Learn about the median salaries, job growth, and education requirements for six of these jobs.

Career Options that Involve Sharks

There are a number of careers where you could literally swim with sharks, either in the wild or in captivity. Some careers involve working with sharks in person, while others may only require research from a distance. Check out the list below to learn about several jobs revolving around this well-known fish!

Job Title Median Salary (2016)* Job Growth (2014-2024)*
Postsecondary Teacher $75,340 13%
Reporter and Correspondent $37,820 -8%
Photographer $34,070 3%
Writer and Author $61,240 2%
Zoologist and Wildlife Biologist $60,520 4%
Veterinarian $88,770 9%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Information for Jobs Involving Sharks

Postsecondary Teacher

University-level teachers of marine biology or zoology educate their students about aquatic life, including sharks. University teachers who are fully tenured perform research and present their findings in peer-reviewed academic journals, and they also may attend conferences in the United States and at other international locations. Teaching at the postsecondary level at a community college requires a minimum of a master's degree, but anyone looking to perform research or pursue a position at a 4-year school will need a doctoral degree.

Reporter and Correspondent

Reporters and correspondents who focus on marine and ocean life might choose to investigate stories involving sharks. As part of the reporting process, they review their work to ensure that findings are accurate and held to journalistic integrity standards. In today's world, reporters and correspondents maintain a social media presence in order to stay current and relevant. A bachelor's degree in journalism or communications is typically required by employers of reporters and correspondents.


Photographers working with sharks can choose to pursue work in a number of different areas, including aquariums, research facilities, and the ocean. In order to capture underwater subjects, like sharks, photographers may use specialized photographic equipment, as well as computer software that can enhance or clean-up the captured images. Photographers keep a portfolio to show off their work and acquire more jobs in the future. While a degree is not necessary to work as a photographer, many postsecondary courses are available.

Writer and Author

Stories about sharks, including the original Jaws novel that spawned the hit film, all come from the minds of talented authors and writers. They may choose to write fictional novels, screenplays, television pilots, or short stories that can be published in magazines or anthologies, or they may apply their skill toward non-fiction books or articles. Writers of non-fiction must spend copious amounts of time doing research and compiling information, so real-life observation of sharks is a possibility! For full-time work in the field, a bachelor's degree in a subject related to writing or English is usually required.

Zoologist and Wildlife Biologist

Zoologists and wildlife biologists that choose to focus on marine life can study the interaction of sharks with the rest of the ocean and its wildlife. The professionals could study sharks' behavior and physiology, and they can recommend methods of conservation based on their findings. Zoologists and wildlife biologists can also help to protect endangered species. A minimum of a bachelor's degree is required for this line of work, and anyone interested in advanced scientific positions should obtain a master's degree.


Veterinarians can choose to specialize in marine wildlife, which could involve working with sharks. Those in veterinary medicine can expect to treat wounds, use medical equipment and diagnostic imagine devices to observe and treat animal patients, and perform surgical procedures when needed. Some veterinarians work primarily in research, where they can run trials to test new surgical techniques and medications. A Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree is required to work as a veterinarian, along with a state license.

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