Umpires and Referees

Umpire at Home Plate

Umpires and referees ensure that competitors in athletic events follow the rules. They make binding decisions and have the power to impose penalties upon individuals or teams that break the rules. Umpires, referees, and other sports officials hold about 18,620 jobs in the United States.

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Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) None
Duties Enforce rules and regulations during sporting events
Salary Range Below $25,000 to $100,000+
Work Environment Indoors/Outdoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Opportunities available throughout the country
Minimum Education Level
  • High School Diploma
School Subjects
  • Physical Education
  • Psychology
  • Speech
Experience Several years amateur league experience recommended
Personality Traits
  • Athletic
  • Outgoing
  • Realistic
  • Interpersonal
  • Leadership
  • Public Speaking
Certification or Licensing Required
Special Requirements None
Employment Prospects Fair
Advancement Prospects Fair
Outlook About as Fast as the Average
Career Ladder
  • Professional League Umpire/Referee
  • Collegiate or Minor League Sports Umpire/Referee
  • Adult Amateur League Umpire/Referee
  • Youth League Umpire/Referee

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