It’s a fear that likely every working individual has had at one time or another: the worry that at some point their education will either not secure a job, or that the job it lands them will eventually no longer interest them.
While there many who are confident in the path they choose, there are also those among us who find that we would likely benefit from a career pivot. The challenge is utilizing your past experience and your education in a way that works for you.
The job acquisition experts at ResumeCoach note the key is to, “Think about what motivates you, what type of work environment you want to work in, and what you’re good at. What parts of your job do you enjoy and what would you change in the workplace? Thinking about these questions will help you make the right choices.”
Sometimes those components change once or even multiple times over the landscape of a professionals life. When we begin our professional lives, we allow ourselves to ponder these ideas. But just because you choose a degree or a job or a field, that doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to reevaluate.
In fact, the key to fulfillment is committing yourself to not settling when you find that your passions and motivations have changed.
Nursing is one of those fields that people are so familiar with, they often don’t realize the dozens and dozens of potential job opportunities that someone who pursues nursing has available to them.
In general, the Department of Labor Statistics puts job growth for nursing at 15 percent, which is much faster than in other industries. Additionally, while there has historically been little diversity within the field itself, that is changing radically.
Beyond the makeup of job opportunity and field diversity, overall, there’s also the fact that those who have experience and education in nursing are able to pursue roles far beyond the traditional halls of the hospital.
Virtually every facet of the traditional healthcare industry utilizes specialized nurses, thus even within one organization there will likely be a lot of space for change. Plus, there are jobs for nurses in forensics, infection control, occupational therapy, and pharmacology. Truly, the list of career directions a nurse can take is virtually endless.
Unlike nursing, those in the field of international relations are not widely recognized by the general public. It’s a field where those who thrive are not just good at teamwork and collaboration, they’re good at achieving it across geographical and political borders.
As Mike Sheehan and Helen Brocklehurst wrote for The Independent, “In a world where thousands of nuclear weapons exist and more countries are trying to acquire them, where suicide terrorist strikes come without warning and thousands die each day from poverty caused by the way the international system operates, we need to know about and understand international relations.”
The crucial key that allows cultural and social entities to coexist in meaningful ways is not a battle of the wills or power, but rather the kind of rapport between major players that only smart international relations can provide.
If your gut reaction is to assume that the field is only made of high-level officials negotiating the likes of trade deals — and those who work directly under them — you’d be wrong. The reality is that the job prospects are wide ranging.
Those in the field are not just adept at cross-cultural lines, but even just across state and province lines.
Norwich University points to just a few of the possibilities for someone in international or interstate relations:
- System Level Analysis
- State Level Analysis
- Organizational Level Analysis
- Individual Level Analysis
- Research Specialists
- Policy Writers
- Political Analysts
- International/Interstate Lawyers
- International/Interstate Business Consultants
These jobs all combine an understanding of law and people, as well as official and unofficial relationships in such a way that for the individual who pursues the field, the prospects are far-reaching.
Those who venture into the field of social work are driven by similar brands of motivation: to impact their communities and the people who live there for the better. However, the job is not one with a singular route.
The Department of Labor Statistics gives it an even better projected outlook than that of nursing at 16 percent, which means serious growth and opportunity for the professionals who fill its ranks.
Social work is diverse because entities from the federal and state governments all the way down to the local school level employ social workers. They are on the front lines of understanding and addressing the behavioral and emotional issues that can challenge individuals due to their environment.
“A few population groups human service workers interact with include children and families, the homeless, immigrants, people with addictions, veterans, and the elderly. Besides working with diverse groups of people, social workers often get to help individuals deal with everyday tasks, meaning they are empowering struggling individuals to live healthy lives,” write field experts at Rutgers University.
Given the diverse nature of job prospects, it’s probable the most challenging aspect for those in the field to navigate will be the specifics of what specializations they want to pursue.
Civil engineering comprises the engineering field wherein professionals enjoy the highest level of job growth. In both the public and private worlds, civil engineers are responsible for the infrastructure projects and systems needed for roads, buildings, water and sewage, dams, bridges, and tunnels, to name just a few.
Additionally, the civil engineering specialists at Ohio University write, “The demand for civil engineers will not relent as the relevant employers seek qualified individuals to help upgrade an aging infrastructure as well as fill job openings in the renewable energy sector.”
Thus, it’s a field where not only the need for those filling traditional roles is expanding, but also one where there are new opportunities and ventures making it continually diverse. It’s the kind of job market that allows those who enter into the field to enjoy a future with constant, ever-changing possibilities.
In her overview of how specific degrees correlate to future jobs, Rebecca Koenig wrote for U.S. News and World Report that what matters more and more is how you market your skills to employers and not necessarily your specific experience or education. Essentially, the idea that certain degrees are safe while others aren’t is an antiquated perception to have, one that will surely limit you.
The important thing to remember, whether your pursue a field listed here or another, is that in many ways the landscape of possibility is largely dictated by how hard you are willing to work to leverage the skills that you have.
There is certainly value in recognizing which pursuits will naturally yield the most versatile pool of job opportunities. For individuals who feel they are prone to wanting a change of pace, this will likely be especially prudent.
Again, it is valuable to recognize what types of things you’re naturally inclined to excel at, and which skills you have cultivated that can be applicable and marketable across a diverse set of jobs.