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Some Discussions Concerning Careers After Graduation

You may discuss why you chose your current career path or you may give information about a career path. Do include the major/majors and the courses that you need to study to pursue this career path.

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PYETwentyTwelve's picture

Becoming a Medical Policy Specialist

As a Medical Policy Specialist one has to sit for a 4.5-hour examination to become a Certified Professional Coder.  One has to keep their CEUs (Continuing Education Units) current every single year and is a great feat to maintain over 30 of them but is a requirement.

As a student, you would have to take courses like:

  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Coding Principles
  • English
  • Medical Terminology
  • Diagnoses 
  • Procedural coding
  • Other medical related courses as assigned by the school you plan on attending

Most community colleges, colleges/universities offer 2-year and 4-year degrees in Health Information Technology, Registered Health Information Administration and Registered Health Information Technology, if interested just do a search on any college site.  Or you can earn a certificate in coding a Certificate of Coding Specialist (CCS).

Anyone interested in the field of Medical Coding can also take accelerated classes at their area's business schools and receive certification in a year or two years, but the downfall is you have gained no real work experience, unless the school offers internships to its students.  Most companies require 2 years of coding experience, whether it be in a physician's clinic or a hospital.

Once you pass the 4.5-hour examination, it is time to get to work coding medical related forms, experience is definitely needed because the certificate or credentials alone won't take you far if no practical experience has been earned.

rosescented's picture

Career goals? Still figuring those out!

I'm an English major for a lot of reasons, but the main one is because I love to read and write. When I chose that major, I didn't really have any specific career goals in mind - I just figured it would come to me, when I was ready to decide. That was a couple of years ago, and now I have narrowed it down a little, but I am still uncertain.

For one, I am thinking of going into teaching. I am moving into another state once I finish my bachelor's degree, and so I would wait to get credentialed in that state but from what I've read about the education system there, I can substitute to teach with a bachelor's degree. This would be great because it would let me get hands-on experience before having to commit to the profession fully.

Another option I'm considering is going into library science. It would require me to get my master's degree, but that's ok. I dress like an old lady with glasses, so I already fit the part of a librarian! I just need the education behind me to back it up! ;) Really though, I love researching topics, and I think this could be a very fulfilling profession for me.

Those are just two of my options. I also sometimes toy with being a full-time writer, but it's not financially viable for me yet. I'm not giving up yet, though!!

PYETwentyTwelve's picture

I felt so out of place at career fairs

Hello and thanks for the post, great tips that one can put into action and come out of the career fair with a solid job offer.  I do agree with dressing for the occasion. This means to dress professionally but bring some comfortable shoes to put on after you're done at the fair, because with all that walking to each job booth, you will need them.  :)

When I was working on my undergraduate degree, and I was required to attend career fairs, I was told to have 10 one-page resumes and my references on a separate sheet of paper.  I had to know something about each company at the fair, so I could ask some "intelligent" questions about the company or what the company did.  I didn't like this initially, but in the long run it came in handy.  :)  I am not sure if I stood out from all the other students who attended the fair because I never got a job from that experience but what I did get out of the career fairs, I met some business contacts, I had some knowledge about many businesses in my city and outside of my city, I found out about different jobs, that were open in these companies, which I never heard of or was interested in. 

I came away from the career fair knowing what I had to make it in the business and what wasn't going to work for me.  I had a smile that day when the career fair was over.  I would suggest any college to go to at least a couple of these fairs, because you never know what might be in store for you.

Denia

PS - Plus you get all the free goodies that companies bring with them to give away.  :)  :)

PYETwentyTwelve's picture

Hi Ashlynn

This has happened to so many people I know, started off as a contract, part-time or temporary employee at a good company, they were not sure what they wanted to do professional but knew they needed a job to pay bills.  Many of them in the beginning when working these kinds of jobs were only going to work for certain periods of time.  They didn't have any benefits but if overtime was offered, they could work the additional hours boosting their wages for bigger paydays.

Many of these people had families they needed to take care of and just having a job was better than not so they took what was offered to them, and it really paid off for many of them, after a few months their bosses wanted them to come aboard on a full-time basis with full benefits for themselves and family members.  Many of them have been working at these companies for many years because the employers saw things in them that would be advantageous to their organizations.  The employers already knew these contracted, part-time and temporary employee's job history and what skills they had to offer; they already knew their work output.  Some of these same employees are still part-time because working overtime has its benefits too. They are just permanent part-timers now.  :)

Denia

kikiriki91's picture

film?

I did not see a post about working in film, but if there is one already, then please forgive me!  I am planning on working in the entertainment industry when I graduate.  I have learned that in order to have the best chance of working in the entertainment industry, there are a couple of necessary things, that need to be done. 

Of course, it is important to have a general understanding of the industry.  This can often be fulfilled by completing coursework in your prospective field.  However, from what I have read and from the people I have talked to, it seems the two most important tips are to have internship experience and to network. 

It is essential to have experience in order to make it in the entertainment world.  This can best be done by completing a couple of internships.  Often, an internship lasts for about a semester, so it is possible to complete several internships before graduation.  It is also really important to network at job fairs, events, internships, etc.  And of course, you have to have the passion and talent to make it in the industry.  You have to be able to prove to others that you deserve that job.  I think that this is really applicable to any industry, though.  Good luck!  

iracquel's picture

I am currently a Biochemistry

I am currently a Biochemistry student. I would like to pursue a career in medicine, thus, I am using biochemistry, as a stepping stone towards my goal. I just started, and I must say that it is truly enjoyable. Even though it does get quite busy at times, the fulfillment that comes about from doing what I love encourages me to go on and makes me believe that I can make it.

Med school is no joke, really. It does require lots of commitments and a great deal of time. I can confidently say that if you are not ready to commit about 10 years of your life solely to studying, then it is not the career for you.....at least, that's what my advisor said. However, if you enjoy the thrill of the chase, then go for it! It is a very marketable career, with job security because...well, there is no particular time in this world that no one gets sick. That's just the irony of medicine as a career. Doctors claim to treat patients and to promote health amongst people, yet it is the sick people that we depend on to earn a living, lol!

Otherwise, medicine as a career is very fulfilling. It does take up so much time...sometimes I fear that I may end up graduating with kids, or when I'm nearing menopause, lol!...but the lifetime fulfillment that accompanies these years of sacrifice is what keeps me going on.

Steven Hightower's picture

Film/Video Degree

Film/Video is probably one of the hardest majors to ever choose. You really need to love Film to go to a college for it. It takes a whole lot time and drive to truly achieve a successful career after college. Only few will be able to achieve their goal. Millions of people are fighting for the same thousand jobs. In my personal experience, I have wanted to do this for my entire life and I let no man tell me I can't do it.

I already have it in my head that I will achieve a great screenwriting career. Searching for a career after going to a film school can be the hardest thing a person can do. Lets say that you, for some reason, decided that you no longer want to work in the film industry. Its almost impossible to land a good job not involving film with a Fine Arts degree. It is an extremely focused degree. For example, I have a cousin that went to the same college that I am going to.

He got a Bachelors degree in Theater Arts. Near his exit of the college, he realised that he did not want to be an actor. He graduated two years ago. His current employment status is working part time at Waldbaums and he is miserable. If you can get any message from this post, it would be that if you want to go to college for Film, you better know that you want to do it and do it for a long time.

p_abia05's picture

Become A Financial Advisor

If you desire to become a financial advisor, the first step is to obtain the right education and training. An AA or bachelor degree is not a requirement but I strongly recommend it in this field if you want an advantage. Good degrees to have in this field are statistics, economics mathematics law or business, and finance. In addition, try to take course in investment, estate planning and risk management to help you be a more well rounded advisor. I recommend for this career path to immerse yourself as a full time students and study if you have the financial resource to do so. For those without the financial resource, seek out studying online or part time, which will save you some money.

As well as degree, you will need certification. Certification will increase the reputation of the financial advisor. The Certified Financial Planer (CFP) would be best to obtain for personal financial advisers. This certification is issued by the Cerified Financial Board of Standards and requires the candidate to have completed certain educational requirements. Also the candidate must pass several exam to ensure they have an excellent knowledge of investment, risk management, financial planning process, employee benefits, taxes, and retirement planning.  This process take time, therefore you should spend at least two years to complete these programs.

p_abia05's picture

Becoming A Nurse

Nursing is a popular career, and the need for nurses continues to grow. With such a growing need for nurses, you would think that it would be easy to get the education. The truth is, it is harder to get a nurse’s education compared to the demand. A study shows that America has a deficiency of educators for the nursing programs. Therefore, this makes nursing programs hard to get into with long waiting lists.

With all the obstacles in the way, becoming a nurse is still an excellence choice. The growth continues to increase and a nurse will never be out of a job. As with any career options, you want to make a plan and set a timeline into a head nurse in the future. Course work often includes Anatomy and physiology, Fundamentals of nursing, Biology, Microbiology, Pharmacology, Nursing care for children and adults.

p_abia05's picture

Become a Surgical Technician

Surgical technician are important members of the surgical team. To be a one of these tech, you will have to have a quick mind, a cool head and a stomach made of steel to perform your job.

Job Description: The duties are to prepare and sterile the OR operating room for surgery, transport patients to and from the OR, and giving the instruments to the surgeon. This is a good time to consider a career in this field. The demand is these techs are about 25 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Surgical Technician Salary: ¾ of surgical technician work in hospital and they earn between 33,400 and 47,570 annually, but the larger the city you work in the more income you will make.

 Certification: Most employers prefer to hire certified technologist to non-certified peers. So learn what you need to learn. Most college offers a certification program for this field which last between 9 month to 2 years. Check your college to see if they offer training in Surgical Technology.

Ashlynn Hall's picture

Starting Small

Well, as much as I would love to just jump into designing for the video game industry when I finish college, I feel that I may want to work my way up. I may test the waters by getting into advertising - working on flyers, bilboards, web banners, and the like. I believe that this would be a really fun and enriching experience. On the side, I can continue to hone my design skills, and work on building characters and landscapes on my own to expand my portfolio. This way, I can move easily from lighter advertising work, to more in-depth character and landscape design.

deadlywater96's picture

increase your mind level

Even today, people around me are just like living in some kind of dream world. I live in a city where all concerned about doing graduation and post-graduation is a must but their mental level is still very low. Talking about me, i believe in doing something very big and not just dreaming but also I'm doing things which will help me step-up high than people around me. I am a student in a bachelor degree and also working as a part-time network marketer, some says its a member making scheme or chain making system but this is cheap thinking from my point of view.

Doing part-time is a part of becoming self-dependency which lets you face things like time management, money management and many more things which a business man do. Somebody said that for becoming a successful businessmen, you should become a salesman first. Even today in this modern world, people are satisfied with low salary or you can say job which will never make your dreams come true. Job is just not the only option after you complete your studies, increase your mental level people. Search the top  10 richest person of the world, then 100, then 1000 and then 100000, you will not find a single person who got rich from a job because business is the only thing which can let your dreams come true.

one advice for all pals

do you want to become rich? if your answer is YES then just start with one thing "become self-dependent".

deadlywater96's picture

NETWORK MARKETING

hello every one, i am a student in college and also a part-time network marketer. I belong from a middle class family which always forced me to focus only on studies which was surely not my cup of tea. Here in India, people are satisfied with a job of Rs. 10,000 or  $200. I laugh when i hear people talking about going in a multinational company and doing a job of not more than $500, i mean we all say that world in developing very fast but not the people's thinking. I was always known with fact that we all get very few opportunities to become successful and we should grab the opportunity quickly but some people don't react when the it comes due to fear of failure. I was invited by one of my friend to a seminar which promises me to deliver my choice of time, money, status, happiness and now i can say that i am going in a right direction. Yeah i know that there are fake companies and organizations which break our faith but take these as hurdles in the path of success. If you want to travel several miles or kilometers on feet, you have to start it from just one step but if you don't even take the first step then you will never-ever going to start your journey. Take your first step now and the rest of journey will also be covered but don't just keep sitting and thinking "when to start".

masoodalam's picture

My experience as a Mechanical Engineer

Hi guys,

I did my graduation in Mechanical Engineering from NEDUET Karachi 3 years back. First of all, I would like to share why I chose Mechanical Engineering. My father is also a mechanical engineer, and he works abroad. After passing college, I had many career options to pursue, but I chose Mechanical Engineering for three reasons.

1. I love to play with tools and I had basic understanding of fundamental subjects of engineering before starting university life.

2. I had vision that I could be excel in this field.

3. Lastly, the local and international market is so vast for engineers especially for mechanical engineers that in 2008 recession I had many job options.

Now, I am very happy with my decision and after getting rich experience in oil refining industry. I am planning for Masters in the same field or in renewable energy. Basically, I was involved in activities related to energy conservation on plant. The future as I see at this stage in Sustainable energy related project is prosperous. The field is growing exponentially. 

Jay Pineda's picture

Life after graduation is

Life after graduation is probably one of the things which we are not yet sure of. We are usually not sure with our career plans after our graduation and everything is still a blur. However I highly suggest that while you are still studying, at least brainstorm on how you would plan your life after graduation, where will you apply, what things to buy first and more.

Personally, I already have plans after my graduation. I am a Marketing Management major and I already know what companies I will target. I plan to pursue a career on the consumer industry. Like being a brand manager on a well known company here in our Country. That's what I plan. First thing I would do with my first salary is to spoil myself a little more by buying some clothes or anything I like. Based on experience, many have already told me that usually, the salary is really spent to pamper and spoil yourself a little on your first 6 months to 1 year. Am already expecting this so am planning to save money only after a year.

My career plans are still not that clear but its good to plan your career ahead. Good luck to all graduating students!

Astepcloser's picture

Choosing a career and a major

Choosing a career and a major for college is a very stressful thing, especially at such a young age. For this reason alone, many people will change majors while in college at least once. Sometimes, people think they know what they want to do, and once the get into the actual coursework they change their minds. Thus, changing their major & career choice.

It is important for them to know that this is completely normal. And, many people change their majors & career choices. They are not alone in this.

So far, I have been incredibly lucky. The major & career I have chosen have proven to be something that I enjoy doing. I just love to code! It sounds geeky, but it's true. I hope that I continue to be happy with my choice after this semester is over. That's my biggest worry.

If I do decide to stick with my intended major, I will be able to get a job/career just about anywhere once I get out of college. Computer programmers are in high demand along with pretty much any other job involving computers.

Mboyd89's picture

Current Career

My initial plan for following a career path outside of college was to get my teaching license and teach high school German classes. However, before I got too far into the education program, I began teaching private music lessons. Very quickly, I came to really love the job, and soon I started making pretty good money doing not all that much in terms of work. It was around this time that I had my first pre-student teaching experiences where I was actually in schools working with students. What I found was that this career path did not seem very appealing, especially in comparison to my music teaching job. As a result, I began to have doubts about continuing as a teacher education student. Soon, I decided that I would no longer be pursuing my teaching license after I graduated. Instead, because I have my linguistics degree and need only a few more courses to do this, I will be pursuing my applied linguistics degree, which will allow me to teach English as a Foreign language. In the mean time, I am very content with my job as a music teacher, and will be continuing with this job, even after I begin teaching English. 

java602's picture

Most colleges host a career

Most colleges host a career fair at least once per year, if not once per semester, perhaps more often.  There is a good reason for this.  College students spend roughly four years preparing for their futures as part of the workforce, but many of them are completely clueless on how to make the jump from college to a career.  A career fair not only provides college students with an array of potential job opportunities after college, but many also include information sessions that will help you learn how to prepare for other aspects of a career.  These can include valuable interview skills, resume tutorials, and lists of contacts.  A career fair may even open your eyes to new opportunities that you were not aware that were available to you within your chosen field of study.  If you have the chance to attend a career fair at your college, I highly recommend that you do so.  It may seem “lame” but you do not want to miss out on a small way to gain an edge in the job market, especially now that it has shrunk and grown even more competitive.  Even a small advantage will prove to be useful in the future. 

simona-ioana's picture

my story

I am currently a teacher and I cannot say that ending up here was easy. I had to study a lot and follow many courses. The exams were harder and I was left with almost no free time. If I was asked to pick another career I would still choose this one. It gives me a lot of satisfaction to teach children that almost everyday remind me of how I was at their age.
My first teaching year was a mess. I did not know where to start or what to do, I just went in front of the kids and told my story. After a couple of months I gained a little trust in myself and I could actually enjoy doing this job. It has taken me a lot to be good in what I do but I can tell you that it was totally worth it. After graduation, that summer I did a lot of traveling to different summer schools so I could get used to this environment, and I did that because when I was in my final year in college we had to teach other kids, and I wasn’t quite able to do that because I also had to learn how all the paper work is done. I have met a lot of nice people who still believe in educations and were eager to help me.

Mercer Smith's picture

re: Becoming a Software Architect

So, to be a software architect, what would one have to study in college? I know that there are Computer Science degrees, but I'm wondering if there is a more specialised requirement that one would have to fulfill to have this position? Would you have to study computer science with a concentration of software architecture?

It is really crazy how so many jobs are opening up in the computer and technology industry. As you wrote, a software architect can expect to be paid a great deal of money, but did you know that things like server maintenance and tech support jobs can bring in the same amount? Not only that, but it is almost impossible to study computer science and leave school to find the job market dried up. Something that many people struggle with is being awarded with a degree and then having nothing to do with it. I know that when I graduated with my bachelors I couldn’t get a job in my field, so I went forward onto a masters degree instead. Since then I have worked in a number of different fields, but none of them were really related to what I had studied. I guess I should have gone for Comp Sci!

Certified Akademik wrote:

Many software companies depend upon software architects to ensure that their software technologies are designed, created and function smoothly and are reliable in the long term. Before they are hired for work, software architects must cope up with a few criterion and requirements and must receive technical college training. Students who are keen towards the career of software architecture, may be happy to know about some of the interesting facts related to the pay in this profession. Software architects with one to five years of experience can easily grab a salary of about $50,000-60,000. Also, according to a survey, the average software architect salary for different job positions across the nation is about 56 percent greater than average salaries for many other job positions.

To become a Software Architect, students interested have to study the latest Software packages once their graduation study is completed in Software engineering or a specialisation in Computer Science. Having a post graduation in the related subjects may prove to assist you to enhance your career. Software Architects are amongst one of the highest remunerated professionals. It won’t be wrong if you expect a pay of as much as $80,000 per year. After having complete knowledge, these architects can look out for jobs in the Government sector as well as in private sector firms.

Mercer Smith's picture

re: Career goals? Still figuring those out!

I was an English Major as well and have since gone on to start work on my masters. Honestly, I didn’t know at the time what I was going to do with my bachelors degree, either. Part of me really wanted to be a writer, but I didn’t quite know where to start; the other part of me wanted to be a teacher, but knew that jobs in the teaching industry were really hard to get.

Library Science is really interesting. I have a lot of friends that have gone on to get their masters in that field and really find themselves appreciating and feeling rewarded by their work. So, in terms of viable job careers, I might recommend that over going to try to be a teacher. Speaking from experience as someone who has had a job as a teacher, it is a difficult and sometimes very emotionally trying profession. Although I really like it, and it works for me, that is because I have been doing it for a while. If you feel that you would love to teach and you are the type of person that is okay with putting maximum effort in and getting minimal results out, then give it a try. Otherwise, you might want to consider another route.

rosescented wrote:

I'm an English major for a lot of reasons, but the main one is because I love to read and write. When I chose that major, I didn't really have any specific career goals in mind - I just figured it would come to me, when I was ready to decide. That was a couple of years ago, and now I have narrowed it down a little, but I am still uncertain.

For one, I am thinking of going into teaching. I am moving into another state once I finish my bachelor's degree, and so I would wait to get credentialed in that state but from what I've read about the education system there, I can substitute to teach with a bachelor's degree. This would be great because it would let me get hands-on experience before having to commit to the profession fully.

Another option I'm considering is going into library science. It would require me to get my master's degree, but that's ok. I dress like an old lady with glasses, so I already fit the part of a librarian! I just need the education behind me to back it up! ;) Really though, I love researching topics, and I think this could be a very fulfilling profession for me.

Those are just two of my options. I also sometimes toy with being a full-time writer, but it's not financially viable for me yet. I'm not giving up yet, though!!

Mercer Smith's picture

re: my story

I currently teach as well, and I always tell people how difficult it was to get here. Not only am I currently teaching, but I am also still in school, so naturally it is a difficult and stressful thing. In order to become a teacher, you have to do so much work first that I always tell people to be certain that they are the type of individual that enjoys teaching before embarking on the voyage.

Teaching, I believe is for a very special kind of person that (as I wrote above) can be comfortable putting a maximum amount of effort in and a minimum amount of reward out. Especially for me (I teach writing), there are hardly any times where my students will come and thank me for the work that we have done together. Sometimes I wonder where I would be if I hadn’t started teaching, and I realize that I probably wouldn’t be half as happy or fulfilled as I am today. Sometimes it can be very satisfying to be a behind-the-scenes kind of worker that is really helping people to better themselves. As I’m sure you’re familiar with, all of the cruddy work in the world is totally made up for when one student starts to “get it.”

simona-ioana wrote:

I am currently a teacher and I cannot say that ending up here was easy. I had to study a lot and follow many courses. The exams were harder and I was left with almost no free time. If I was asked to pick another career I would still choose this one. It gives me a lot of satisfaction to teach children that almost everyday remind me of how I was at their age. 

My first teaching year was a mess. I did not know where to start or what to do, I just went in front of the kids and told my story. After a couple of months I gained a little trust in myself and I could actually enjoy doing this job. It has taken me a lot to be good in what I do but I can tell you that it was totally worth it. After graduation, that summer I did a lot of traveling to different summer schools so I could get used to this environment, and I did that because when I was in my final year in college we had to teach other kids, and I wasn’t quite able to do that because I also had to learn how all the paper work is done. I have met a lot of nice people who still believe in educations and were eager to help me.

newkid on the block's picture

Research Scientist - Biological Sciences!

Anyone who has/wants to get a degree (Bachelors and then Masters) in Biological/life sciences - Biology, Biochemistry, Microbiology, Molecular and cell biology - can go on and become a research scientist.

All most all Pharma companies are looking for people with degrees in these fields and pay handsome. The jobs titles will be varied as

Quality control Microanalyst

Microbiology Supervisor

Quality Risk Management Specialist

Quality Control Molecular biology analyst

Senior Scientist

and so on.

There is less stress associated with these jobs as compared to the basic research field. However, I would recommend students to take every opportunity to grow themselves during their studies by doing summer research training in various research labs or these pharma companies so as to have hands-on-experience on various techniques.

Also, some of these jobs will require a good knowledge of Office softwares such as word, excel and database management along with other basic computer and communication skills, so it is a good idea to work on accumulating those skills while at college.

 

Mercer Smith's picture

re: Most colleges host a career

Career fairs are definitely a great way to open your eyes to opportunities that may be out there but you have not yet been exposed to. Although I never went to a career fair in undergraduate, I recently went to my first one. Holy cow are there some interesting jobs for people to do out there! I had no idea that there were such a plethora of things you could do with each degree. Before I went, I was under the impression that if you went to school for Marine Biology, you were just going to be a Marine Biologist; I guess my perspective was a bit limited. I had no idea that under each sector of study there were a million and one different choices. Like, if you went for Library Science, you are not limited to just working in libraries, there are a number of career choices for you.

I guess one of the benefits to career fairs, other than getting a career or beneficial career tips, can just be to open people’s eyes up to the number of things that they could do if they decided that the career they chose wasn’t for them, or didn’t work in the long run.

java602 wrote:

Most colleges host a career fair at least once per year, if not once per semester, perhaps more often.  There is a good reason for this.  College students spend roughly four years preparing for their futures as part of the workforce, but many of them are completely clueless on how to make the jump from college to a career.  A career fair not only provides college students with an array of potential job opportunities after college, but many also include information sessions that will help you learn how to prepare for other aspects of a career.  These can include valuable interview skills, resume tutorials, and lists of contacts.  A career fair may even open your eyes to new opportunities that you were not aware that were available to you within your chosen field of study.  If you have the chance to attend a career fair at your college, I highly recommend that you do so.  It may seem “lame” but you do not want to miss out on a small way to gain an edge in the job market, especially now that it has shrunk and grown even more competitive.  Even a small advantage will prove to be useful in the future. 

newkid on the block's picture

Path towards Professorship!

Again my post is related to the field of Biological sciences but so far I cannot recall anyone in this forum talking about becoming a Professor! May be kids these days are really smart and know that it is not worthy to put all those years of hardwork for a little pay to become a Professor!

Anyways, working towards a Professorship esp. in Biological sciences is really for those who has unlimited passion towards basic research and teaching. It is a long and gruelling path with lots of pain and stress but if you love doing research - asking questions that others don't even think of and getting answers to those questions by being so close to the intimate secrets of life and nature - it is worth it. Who knows one day you might get that coveted Nobel Prize all the while living with knowledge and satisfaction that your work has helped to understand diseases and design drugs that saved millions of people!

It all starts with getting a Bachelors degree in any one of the Biological subjects and then a Masters degree and then going into the grad school for the PhD title. After that, it is typically requested to do postdoctoral training for few years in a very good lab. I mention good lab since it is important  for yoru future career so as to publish good papers under a good supervisor who has the competency to guide you and has the network to push you further once you finish the post doc. These days the National Institute of Health (NIH) which funds the basic research encourages young researchers and has programs to facilitate early transition to independence (i.e after PhD straight to a group leader but once again you should have the good fortune to have been in a great lab for your PhD!).

Once you transition into a independent group leader (which would be also the Assistant Professor position), one can continue doing successful and innovative research while also teaching students and can get tenure in the future as a full Professor! Viola, there you got a Prof!

mlamken's picture

Teaching

I have chosen teaching as my next career. I am 47 years old and for most of my life was a stay-at-home, home-schooling mom to 8 wonderful children. When my 5th child was in 2nd grade, she asked if she could go to "real school". The timing was good and so we agreed to let her, her Kindergarten sister, her 5th grade sister and 7th grade sister enter "real school" after the district spring break. My children have all thrived in the school setting. The fears I had as a young parent have been alleviated by me working in the schools as a volunteer, meeting and interacting regularly with the teachers, driving on field trips, etc. When my youngest entered Kindergarten, I thought I should contribute to the household in a financial way. What better way than to work for the district? Same vacations, summers off, etc. I landed a job in a special education classroom and BANG - my heart was captured. I have followed one student for the last 3 1/2 years. Less than 6 months into my time with her I knew that I needed, yes needed, to become a Special Ed Teacher. I found the perfect program through Western Governors University - it allows me the freedom to work at my own pace, keep my job and still be a parent to my children.

I will graduate at the same time that my student graduates. I will then be ready to step into a classroom of my own. I am so excited to start my second career as a teacher. I have been a teacher all of my life, and now I will be able to use my skills to support myself. How can I do any better? Work in a field I love, with kids I adore and earn a living. It isn't work - it is a lifestyle.

Mercer Smith's picture

re: Management Consultants

I always thought that management consulting was a little bit of a strange profession and maybe even slightly offensive to the people who have been working in the company for a long time. Although I totally understand that sometimes companies may work in old-fashioned ways and need a bit of a revamp, I feel that hiring someone who hasn’t necessarily EVER been in management to tell you how to manage a company just seems silly.

 

If you look at trends in management consulting, the consultant is usually a young, fresh-out-of-college individual who only has the knowledge that they have been taught in school. This person will then try to command and conduct a group of managers who have potentially been in the roles that they are currently in for over 20 years. I guess it just seems silly to me, especially because they get paid so much. I wonder, what did companies do BEFORE this huge consulting fad hint in the mid-90s? How did they cope with managerial struggles, or training/hiring new managers? Although I definitely think that it’s an interesting and lucrative prospect, I don’t see what managerial consultants do that merits them getting so much pay and acclaim.

Certified Akademik wrote:

Management consultants help firms and  organizations to enhance and improve their performance as well as services. Management consultants are usually hired on a per-project basis to identify problems and come up with optimal solutions. Corporations and governments are often willing to seek the advice of an external management consultants because an objective outside opinion is often preferred and also they feel that taking help of professionals is always better.

Becoming a management consultant may be an appropriate career choice for you if you are well aware of the industry’s best practices and have a little experience in managerial roles.

Salaries for newly made consultants range from £25,000 to over £35,000, depending on location, type and size of consultancy. After some years of experience salary can rise to over £50,000.

On getting promoted to more senior levels, the salaries earned per year increase which is also influenced largely by the size and exact location of the firm dealing in consultancy. The consultants that are senior can make roughly £80,000  per year and managing consultants can earn up to £120,000.

New recruits are expected to rise and grow rapidly up to consultant and senior consultant level, and to contribute to the progress of their firm. Consultancies also like to reward those who show interest and identify and produce opportunities for both the business and themselves.

Mercer Smith's picture

re: Teachers

I think it really is great that you are taking something that you already have experience with and putting it to use. I understand how much of a struggle it must have been letting your kids “leave the nest” and go into what they called “real” school. Although I haven’t been home-schooled, I have heard many things (both positive and negative) about it, but something that I do know as fact rather than opinion is that it builds really deep bonds between children and their parents. I think that that aspect of your history is something that you could bring with you to make yourself a very effective and relatable teacher. Especially in Special Education, you will find that the patience you cultivated while working with your own children will really come in handy. I’m also sure that following the same student for a number of years has helped you to both figure out your own teaching style, and also see how a child progresses as they grow. I wish you the best of luck in your future professional endeavors and, as a teacher, suspect that you will do a great job. Have fun developing yourself and developing the kids as well!

mlamken wrote:

I have chosen teaching as my next career. I am 47 years old and for most of my life was a stay-at-home, home-schooling mom to 8 wonderful children. When my 5th child was in 2nd grade, she asked if she could go to "real school". The timing was good and so we agreed to let her, her Kindergarten sister, her 5th grade sister and 7th grade sister enter "real school" after the district spring break. My children have all thrived in the school setting. The fears I had as a young parent have been alleviated by me working in the schools as a volunteer, meeting and interacting regularly with the teachers, driving on field trips, etc. When my youngest entered Kindergarten, I thought I should contribute to the household in a financial way. What better way than to work for the district? Same vacations, summers off, etc. I landed a job in a special education classroom and BANG - my heart was captured. I have followed one student for the last 3 1/2 years. Less than 6 months into my time with her I knew that I needed, yes needed, to become a Special Ed Teacher. I found the perfect program through Western Governors University - it allows me the freedom to work at my own pace, keep my job and still be a parent to my children.

I will graduate at the same time that my student graduates. I will then be ready to step into a classroom of my own. I am so excited to start my second career as a teacher. I have been a teacher all of my life, and now I will be able to use my skills to support myself. How can I do any better? Work in a field I love, with kids I adore and earn a living. It isn't work - it is a lifestyle.

Mercer Smith's picture

re: life post graduation

Most people are not as lucky as you, and do not have a plan for after they graduate. I was one of those people. I approached graduation with a kind of panic that I think a few other people also feel as well. For me it was the end of a really big thing, and I didn’t know what I could or would do at the end of it. It sounds like you were the complete opposite, though, I know people who were even more prepared than you are, and actually started applying for jobs like, 3 months before they graduated. I guess my lack of planning is kind of why I ended up right in Grad School. Rather than looking for a job that used my degree or anything like that, I instead took the easiest way out and just decided to keep more schooling going. There really isn’t a lot available for a person with a writing and rhetoric as well as an English degree. Ha. 

 

Either way, I wish you the best of luck in this. I’m sure that with your perserverance and personality that it shouldn’t be too difficult to be hired. Plus, a degree is supposed to help, right!?

Jay Pineda wrote:

Life after graduation is probably one of the things which we are not yet sure of. We are usually not sure with our career plans after our graduation and everything is still a blur. However I highly suggest that while you are still studying, at least brainstorm on how you would plan your life after graduation, where will you apply, what things to buy first and more.


Personally, I already have plans after my graduation. I am a Marketing Management major and I already know what companies I will target. I plan to pursue a career on the consumer industry. Like being a brand manager on a well known company here in our Country. That's what I plan. First thing I would do with my first salary is to spoil myself a little more by buying some clothes or anything I like. Based on experience, many have already told me that usually, the salary is really spent to pamper and spoil yourself a little on your first 6 months to 1 year. Am already expecting this so am planning to save money only after a year.

My career plans are still not that clear but its good to plan your career ahead. Good luck to all graduating students!

lynn.dot's picture

My career goals have changed

My career goals have changed drastically over my three years of schooling so far. I went in with one plan: veterinary medicine. As the years went on however I am now looking at options other than vet school, and the more I look, the less likely I see myself applying, for financial reasons and I am having a hard time picturing myself in school for another four years with easily another $200,000 in debt by the time it’s all over.

Right now I’m focusing on nutrition. I am an animal science major (some schools don’t offer this, but may offer a zoology/animal focus in biology) with a dairy science minor, and I currently do research in dairy nutrition. Working in the lab with a great team of professors and graduate students has brought out my love of research, and I see myself continuing with that after graduation in some form. Right now my goal is to get a masters in human nutrition rather than animal, and by the end of the masters be an RD, or registered dietitian. You have to take specific classwork for it, do an internship, and pass an exam to be a certified RD, and from there you can choose to work in a variety of settings; clinical, hospital, neonatal, etc. The salary range varies depending on experience and where you work, but it is enough for me to make a comfortable living and that’s all I really need (and in the end, not too far behind a veterinarian’s salary with much less schooling)…of course money is not everything, but you should at least be thinking about your financial situation after college, especially if you have lots of loans to pay off like myself.

The classwork for animal sciences is pretty straight forward: biology, chemistry, anatomy, nutrition, genetics, microbiology, biochemistry, reproductive physiology, etc. You can choose at my school to specialize in sciences or business and take more management oriented classes (directed at farmers, since this is a livestock degree).

Someone looking to be an RD would do college differently than me, so it’s hard to say. If I had known this was what I wanted to do freshman year I would’ve transferred into the human nutrition program here – by the end of four years you are ready for your internship/exam and have taken all the coursework. A lot of it overlaps with my major, but there are a few classes I can’t take until graduate school because they are restricted to human nutrition majors here. I will have to play “catch up” for a year or two after graduation to get all the classes I need.