By MARA LEE firstname.lastname@example.org The 2,000 aerospace engineers listed as working in Metro Hartford -- one of the jobs found here in a higher concentration than just about every other region in the country -- make $85,860 on average. "That's what I would consider a comfortable living," said Bill Pennington, who manages the engineers at aerospace manufacturer Flanagan Industries. "Day-to-day you're not struggling, worrying about money all the time." But that's not as good as the 600 dental hygienists in New Haven County have it. Dental hygienists there make an average of or $50.68 an hour -- more there than in any other place in the country, outside San Francisco. If a dental hygienist making that rate worked 40 hours a week, she would earn $105,420 a year. Amber Auger, a dental hygienist who works in Southbury and West Haven, exclaimed, "Really!" She found it hard to believe, because she makes $38 an hour, and most of her friends working in Fairfield County make a little more, around $40 to $43 an hour. That's just a tiny slice of the enormous pile of data on 819 jobs compiled by government statisticians analyzed payroll records -- what they pay in each metro area, and where each job is most concentrated. The data from the U.S. Bureau of labor Statistics reveal plenty of surprises, perhaps none more head-turning than how lucrative it is to work as a dental hygienist in New Haven County. Auger said she applied with a dentist in Boston, and expected to make $40 an hour, since the city is more expensive than southern Connecticut. "The dentist laughed at me," she said. Data compiled by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reveal plenty of surprises. Click through the gallery to see some of the lucrative jobs in Connecticut.
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