Barbie: A Timeless Icon Inspiring Girls Toward Today's Leading Careers
Contrary to popular belief, Barbie is not just a doll — Barbie is so much more than that. She is everything!
With more than 250 inspiring occupations in her resume, Barbie has played roles ranging from astronaut and pilot to firefighter, journalist, and entrepreneur, among others. Remarkably, Barbie made her 'moonwalk' in 1965, a full four years ahead of the historic lunar landing by humans.
Barbie became a college graduate in 1963, just four years after she officially debuted on March 9, 1959, by Mattel, Inc.'s Ruth Handler. Talk about inspiring girls toward education!
In the early 70s, Barbie defied norms by stepping into the role of a surgeon, a profession dominated by men at the time. To inspire more girls into the realm of STEM, Barbie has also taken up jobs like a computer engineer, video game developer, and robotics engineer.
Now, let’s talk about 10 of Barbie’s careers that have a positive growth trend today and are highly sought-after by students of all genders! Learn how to pursue these top Barbie careers!
- The highest-paid Barbie career in our list is Surgeon Barbie, with a median annual salary of over $239,200.
- The lowest-paid Barbie career in our list is Fashion Designer Barbie, with a median annual salary of $76,700.
- Game Developer is a career held by Barbie in 2016 — this career has a +25% job outlook for the 2021-2031 time period. Highest job growth on our list.
- Producer Barbie is second on the list according to BLS estimated job growth, with 8% growth up to 2031.
- Robotics Engineer Barbie has the lowest job growth from our list (2%), but it is still among the top Barbie careers, highly sought after by students today.
Table of Top Barbie Careers:
|Barbie’s Careers||Year||Median Annual Salary (May 2022)*||Job Outlook* (2021-31)||Number of New Jobs* (2021-31)|
|Game Developer Barbie||2016||$127,260||25% (faster than average)||162,900 job openings/year|
|Producer Barbie||2005||$85,320||8% (faster than average)||17,500 job openings/year|
|Business Executive Barbie||1992||$189,520||6% (as fast as average)||318,100 job openings/year|
|Registered Nurse Barbie||1961||$81,220||6% (as fast as average)||203,200 job openings/year|
|Dentist Barbie||1997||$159,536||6% (as fast as average)||5,100 job openings/year|
|Computer Engineer Barbie||2010||$132,360||5% (as fast as average)||5,300 job openings/year|
|Fashion Designer Barbie||1960 and 2012||$76,700||3% (slower than average)||2,300 job openings/year|
|Surgeon Barbie||1973||> $239,200||3% (slower than average)||23,800 job openings/year|
|Architect Barbie||2011||$82,840||3% (slower than average)||9,100 job openings/year|
|Robotics Engineer Barbie||2018||$96,310||2% (slower than average)||17,900 job openings/year|
The careers on this list are ranked according to job outlook (highest to lowest).
Game Developer Barbie
Game Developer Barbie Description: Developer Barbie sports chic faded jeans, a casual t-shirt, and a trendy army-green jacket.
The package Game Developer Barbie comes in shows what her work desk might look like a big cup of coffee to stay alert, a laptop, a trash can filled with used brainstorming papers, a comfy chair, and large headphones.
Game Development Job Description: Video game developers take charge of building video games that can be played on computers, consoles, and mobile devices. They take the ideas from the design team and turn them into the core code of the game.
They often play a part in creating characters, designing game levels, animating elements of the game, and doing unit testing to ensure everything works as expected.
Career Outlook: Pretty great, honestly! The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates job growth of 25% for software developers in the next decade! Way to go, Barbie!
Degrees Needed: At least a bachelor's degree in software engineering or a related field.
Producer Barbie Description: The 2005 Producer Barbie is fashionably attired in a stylish green pantsuit, complemented by an aqua camisole.
Her minimalist accessories include a black choker and a matching beaded belt. She comes equipped with a "cell phone" and a laptop that fits in her black, faux-leather bag. Her long, vivid orange hair, worn straight with bangs, adds a pop of color to her look.
Producer Job Description: Producers manage the business and financial aspects of a production, which could be a movie, music album, stage show, or TV program. They organize, oversee, and direct every phase of the production.
This includes handling talent, coordinating with the creative team, managing deadlines, collaborating with executives, and controlling financial aspects.
Career Outlook: BLS estimates a growth of 8%, faster than the average of all occupations for producers and directors!
Degrees Needed: At least a bachelor’s degree in film, cinema studies, or a related field (such as theater or communications).
Business Executive Barbie
Business Executive Barbie Description: As a Business Executive, this 1992 Barbie is dressed in office attire – a pink pencil skirt and blazer, complemented by her diamond earrings and pink handbag.
Business Executive Job Description: Business executives play a pivotal role in managing the daily functions of their organizations. Often positioned at the highest tier of management, their duty is to ensure all departments collaborate efficiently towards shared objectives.
An executive's role in an organization is to steer its operations, with the specifics of the role depending on the nature of the organization.
Career Outlook: The BLS estimates a growth of 6% (as fast as average) for top executives.
Registered Nurse Barbie
Registered Nurse Barbie Description: Dating back to 1961, this Barbie is dressed in her white uniform, a navy cape, nurse cap, and carries her medical accessories.
Registered Nurse Job Description: Main duties include keeping track of a patient's health status and evaluating their requirements in order to deliver the highest standard of care and guidance, identifying and understanding patient symptoms, and relaying this information to doctors — to name just a few responsibilities.
Career Outlook: Promising! The BLS estimates 6% job growth in the upcoming decade!
Degrees Needed: Associate’s degree or a bachelor’s degree in nursing, then sit for the NCLEX-RN exam to be licensed. Other options include completing an accelerated nursing program.
Dentist Barbie Description: Dressed in her dentist uniform, this Barbie comes with miniature dental equipment as well as a little patient! The packaging is a ‘real-life’ dentist’s office!
Dentist Job Description: Dentists assess, diagnose, treat, and offer guidance on dental conditions. Their duties include cleaning teeth, filling cavities, carrying out tooth extractions and surgeries, and advocating for practices that promote good oral health.
Career Outlook: An estimated job growth of 6% for dentists up to 2031! The BLS estimates around 5,100 job openings per year in the upcoming decade.
Degrees Needed: A bachelor’s degree, usually a Bachelor of Science (BS), in fields such as biology or chemistry. Take Dental Admissions Test (DAT). Four years of dental school for a Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) or Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) degree. For specialization, a dental residency is required. See dental programs around the world here.
Computer Engineer Barbie
Computer Engineer Barbie Description: The 2010 Computer Engineer Barbie features a laptop, casual attire, pink glasses, and an earpiece.
Computer Engineer Job Description: A Computer Engineer deals with the management and design of computer hardware systems. Although they might focus primarily on either software or hardware, their role requires programming skills, as they are responsible for creating and updating computer programs.
Career Outlook: The BLS estimates job growth of 5% (as fast as average), for computer hardware engineers, up to 2031.
Degrees Needed: At least a bachelor’s degree in computer engineering, computer science, or electrical engineering.
Fashion Designer Barbie
Fashion Designer Barbie Description: The 1960 Fashion Designer Barbie features a pink suit, striped white-and-pink shirt, a hat, and her portfolio of clothing sketches. The 2012 Fashion Designer Barbie features a different look — hair in a bun, pink leggings, and a black, accessorized t-shirt.
Fashion Designer Job Description: As a creative professional, a Fashion Designer designs and crafts clothing, accessories, and/or shoes. They create unique, innovative, and fashionable designs by researching current trends and developing new styles.
Career Outlook: 3% (slower than average), with an estimated 2,300 job openings per year up to 2031.
Degrees Needed: At least a bachelor’s degree in fashion design.
Surgeon Barbie Description: Mattel, Inc. found the right time to come up with the 1973 Surgeon Barbie, back when not many women had such roles. Clothed in surgical attire and equipment, this Barbie also features a white coat, stethoscope, and diploma.
Surgeon Job Description: A Surgeon specializes in conducting surgeries on patients suffering from injuries or illnesses. They analyze patient X-rays, discuss the surgical process with the patient, and prepare and perform surgeries with the help of other surgeons, nurses, and surgical professionals.
Career Outlook: An estimated 3% job growth, with around 23,800 job openings/year, according to BLS estimations.
Degrees Needed: Bachelor’s degree in medical-related fields, pass the MCAT Exam, four-year medical degree, and surgical residency to become eligible for licensure. Learn more about studying medicine here.
Architect Barbie Description: The 2011 Architect Barbie boasts a simple dress, denim jacket, hair tied back, hard hat helmet, and her architectural plans/drawings.
Architect Job Description: An architect designs buildings, ensuring they meet functionality, safety, and creative standards. Architects remain engaged during the entire construction phase, adjusting their designs in response to budget limitations, environmental considerations, and client requirements.
Career Outlook: 3% estimated job growth up to 2031, with around 9,100 estimated job openings/year.
Degrees Needed: At least a Bachelor of Architecture degree program.
Robotics Engineer Barbie
Robotics Engineer Barbie Description: The 2018 Robotics Engineer Barbie is truly everything! With her hair in a ponytail to avoid distractions, casual attire (jeans, sneakers, and denim shirt), a tiny robot, and her safety glasses — she’s a true engineer!
Robotics Engineer Job Description: Robot engineers create early versions of robots (robotic prototypes). They build, set up, check, and fix robots and robot systems, making sure robots work safely, reliably, and accurately.
Career Outlook: 2% job growth within ten years, with an estimated 17,900 job openings/year, according to BLS.
Degrees Needed: At least a Bachelor’s degree in mechanical or electrical engineering with a focus on robotics, or other related fields, such as computer science, mathematics, or design and technology. See study programs in Robotics around the world here.