What it pays: Financially, attorneys tend to do well: In 2012, lawyers made an average salary of $130,880, according to the BLS. But you have to factor in the education costs, as 2012 law school students graduated with an average debt of $108,293.
Doctor: With a work schedule defined by long and irregular hours, physicians' personal lives are at the mercy of their careers. If you're on call, prepare for the possibility of being contacted by a patient during dinner with your family or a night out with your spouse. And if you plan on becoming a surgeon, you'll need a strong stomach for the routine sight of blood and an empathetic heart for delivering news about a lost loved one.
What it pays: With an average salary of $184,820, doctors were hardly pinching pennies last year. But the level of debt accumulated as a result of a grueling academic journey – undergraduate, medical school, internship, residency – can undermine financial gains. Including loans taken out for undergraduate degrees and excluding interest, the median debt for public and private medical school graduates was $170,000 in 2012. If you opt for forbearance during residency, your total repayment could reach $476,000 over the span of 25 years, according to the American Association of Medical Colleges.