16 Career Clusters and Their Career Pathways

Career clusters are groups of occupations that require a common knowledge base and the use of similar skills. Each cluster contains several smaller groups called career pathways that connect to educational programs, industries, and careers. While a career cluster paints a broad picture of a group of occupations, a pathway helps you focus on and develop a clear, more informed educational plan over time. Review the career cluster table below to learn more about individual cluster, its pathways, related occupations, and core skills. Additionally, you can read a personal career story from someone working in the cluster.

After you review all the 16 Career Clusters and their pathways, go to Career Cluster Matrix to cross-reference Career Clusters with your interests.


Career Cluster Cluster Description Career Pathways
Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources
Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources

Do you enjoy working with plants and animals? Interested in working to conserve natural resources or protect the environment? This cluster includes careers in the planning, production, processing, management, distribution, and marketing of agricultural products, including food, plants, animals, fabrics, wood, and crops.

Explore the Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources Career Cluster
Architecture & Construction
Architecture & Construction

Do you want to design, build, and maintain structures where people live, work, and play? This cluster includes careers in designing, planning, managing, building, and maintaining the built environment.

Explore the Architecture & Construction Career Cluster
Arts, Audio/Video Technology & Communications
Arts, Audio/Video Technology & Communications

Do you like to perform? Do you love to use your artistic creativity on the job? This cluster includes careers in designing, producing, exhibiting, performing, writing, and publishing multimedia content, including visual and performing arts and design, journalism, and entertainment services.

Explore the Arts, Audio/Video Technology & Communications Career Cluster
Business, Management & Administration
Business, Management & Administration

Are you entrepreneurial? Do you like to plan and organize activities? This cluster includes careers in planning, organizing, directing, and evaluating business functions essential to effective business operations.

Explore the occupations in the Business, Management & Administration Career Cluster
Education & Training
Education & Training

Do you enjoy teaching others? Are you comfortable with public speaking? This cluster includes careers in planning, managing, and providing education and training services and related learning support services, including administration and library services.

Explore the Education & Training Career Cluster
Finance
Finance

Do you like to work with numbers? Do you want to help people plan for their financial futures? This cluster includes careers in financial and investment planning, banking, insurance, and business financial management.

Explore the Finance Career Cluster
Government & Public Administration
Government & Public Administration

Are you interested in government and politics? Would you like to help pass law? This cluster includes careers in planning, managing, and providing government services at the federal, state, and local levels; including legislative, administrative, and regulatory services.

Explore the Government & Public Administration Career Cluster
Health Science
Health Science

Do you enjoy helping people feel better? Would you like working in a hospital or other medical facility? This cluster includes careers in planning, managing, and providing therapeutic services, diagnostic services, health informatics, support services, and biotechnological research and development.

Explore the Health Science Career Cluster
Hospitality & Tourism
Hospitality & Tourism

Do you want to help other people enjoy their leisure time? Would you like to work in a hotel or in a restaurant? This cluster includes careers in the management, marketing, and operations of restaurants and other food services, lodging, attractions, recreation events, and travel-related services.

Explore the Hospitality & Tourism Career Cluster
Human Services
Human Services

Do you like to help people? Would you enjoy teaching people how to improve their lives? This cluster includes careers that involve tending to families and to human needs.

Explore the Human Services Career Cluster
Information Technology
Information Technology

Do you like technology? Do you enjoy working with computer hardware, software, multimedia, or network systems? This cluster includes careers related to the design, development, support, and management of hardware, software, Internet, multimedia, and systems integration services.

Explore the Information Technology Career Cluster
Law, Public Safety, Corrections & Security
Law, Public Safety, Corrections & Security

Do you like to help protect other people's safety? Do you want to help enforce the law? This cluster includes careers in planning, managing, and providing legal, public safety, corrections, protective services, and homeland security, including professional and technical support.

Explore the Law, Public Safety, Corrections & Security Career Cluster
Manufacturing
Manufacturing

Do you like to design and make things? Are you comfortable working with machines? This cluster includes careers in planning, managing, and performing the processing of materials into intermediate or final products and related professional and technical support activities, such as production planning and control, maintenance, and manufacturing/process engineering.

Explore the Manufacturing Career Cluster
Marketing, Sales & Service
Marketing, Sales & Service

Do you like to sell products or services? Are you friendly and outgoing? This cluster includes careers in planning, managing, and performing marketing activities to reach organizational objectives.

Explore the Marketing, Sales & Service Career Cluster
Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics
Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics

Do you like science or math? Do you enjoy solving problems? This cluster includes occupations and careers in planning, managing, and providing scientific research and professional and technical services (e.g., physical science, social science, engineering), including laboratory and testing services, and research and development services.

Explore the Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics Career Cluster
Transportation, Distribution & Logistics
Transportation, Distribution & Logistics

Would you like to fly planes, drive trucks, or pilot ships? Would you enjoy planning roads or power systems? This cluster includes careers in planning, management, and movement of people, materials, and goods by road, pipeline, air, rail, and water as well as related professional and technical-support services, such as transportation-infrastructure planning and management, logistics services, mobile equipment, and facility maintenance.

Explore the Transportation, Distribution & Logistics Career Cluster

Career Cluster Matrix