The non-tech skills needed to succeed in IT

Debra Auerbach,

Workers with information technology skills are some of today's most in-demand workers. In fact, employers are having a hard time finding people with the right IT skills to fill open positions. While technical skills are naturally important to employers seeking qualified IT candidates, that's not all it takes to get a job or be successful in an IT role.
Here, IT experts share the non-technical skills they believe are needed to succeed in IT:
Analytical skills
"I think it's critical that IT professionals must be analytical in nature -- the ability to look at trends and problems with an eye on cultivating a solution that can speak to an overarching trend rather than a particular, nuanced issue is critical." -- Richie Lauridsen, director of operations, SEOhaus
"The most important non-technical skill for IT professionals in my experience is empathy. With empathy comes understanding of the clients' and/or end-users' problems. This breeds an 'ownership' of the problem, which, in turn, breeds clarity in delivering communication of the problem and its resolution." -- Yehuda Cagen, director of client services, Xvand Technology Corporation
Communication skills
"After 30 years in this industry, which began as a programmer, the skill that helped elevate my career most is that of communication. Learning to be succinct and communicate clearly to your intended audience is absolutely essential for continued success in this business. Communication skills should be developed early and attention paid to detail that is expressed in emails, presentations, phone conversations, meetings and so on. I often coach our younger staff members on communication and why understanding the context of communication is critical." -- Kevin Carlson, vice president and chief security officer, Optaros Inc.
Presentation skills
"Presentation skills make the difference between your ideas being implemented in the real world and them never seeing the light of day. When an IT professional complains that no one in the business understands them, they often have their own faulty presentation skills to blame. To have effective presentation skills, an IT professional must understand how to communicate clearly to a non-technical audience, to be comfortable with the tools and techniques of speaking to a group and have the ability to create a business 'value proposition' for their audience. The key to learning to present is practice, practice, practice -- to your IT peers, to friendly colleagues and even to the mirror." -- Jon Eberly, CEO, Clock Four
Ability to listen
"The ability to listen to the needs of those you support can directly determine the types of products and projects you are assigned to. And while everyone in IT may want the latest and greatest, it does not mean it is necessarily the right fit. Listening to staff needs will also affect your judgment(s) concerning specific products or methods required to fulfill those needs. Lastly, listening will help to foster relationships within the department. Working and listening so closely with one another establishes a sense of trust, reaffirms their faith in your abilities and aids in ensuring all IT personnel meet or exceed expectations." -- Sean Harris, network administrator, City of Palm Bay, Fla.
Business sense
"Today's IT professional needs to be sure they possess the 'soft skills' that can help them really merchandise their work -- and worth -- to the organization. They need great people skills, the ability to anticipate questions, and most importantly, a good business sense. I'd recommend IT professionals get really smart about return on investment and showing how their work impacts the bottom line. They should also make sure they're absolutely clear about the organization's business goals as a whole and find ways to show how their work contributes to those goals. In today's market, it is not enough to have great IT skills and knowledge, it is equally important to position yourself as a strategic business person." -- Peter Nordberg, CEO, InSite
"I believe that entrepreneurship is the most important non-technical skill IT professionals should possess. Entrepreneurship is more of a mindset than a skill, a perspective that can transform problems into opportunities and opportunities into innovation. In the world of IT, innovation large and small can be viewed as 'career currency' that increases the value of the IT professional to their organization." -- Ara H. Bagdasarian, CEO, Omnilert 

You Don't Need a Fancy Degree to Make a Lot of Money

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High-Paying Jobs, No Fancy Degree Needed

It is possible to prepare for a great-paying career without a fancy degree. Don't believe it? Read on to learn more.

We've all been told that going to college can significantly boost our earning power, but there are plenty of people out there who make lots of money without a lot of education.
In fact, some people even land great-paying careers without ever having finished college.
"There are some decent-paying jobs you can get with no degree whatsoever," says David Bakke, career expert at Money Crashers, an online guide to financial fitness. However, "I am of the belief that an associate's degree is better than no higher education at all," he adds.
Of course, there's no guarantee you can make a big salary with - or without - higher education, but if you don't have the time or inclination to pursue a bachelor's degree, here are a few careers you can consider where the potential for big salaries exist.

Career #1 - Web Developer

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Are you artistic and technically inclined? As a web developer, you can manage all the aspects of creating and designing fancy (or not so fancy) websites without needing a fancy degree.
Web developers are the folks who are responsible for the look of websites, their technical aspects, and sometimes their content as well, says the U.S. Department of Labor.
What You Need: You don't need an elaborate master's degree to enjoy a career using all of your artistic talents to design and create websites. In fact, the Department of Labor notes that education requirements for web developers range all the way from a high school diploma to a bachelor's degree. If you're interested in preparing to pursue a career as a web developer, what's most often required is an associate's degree in web design or a related field, says the Department.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Web Design and Development Program.
High-Pay Factor: The new model for business is a boon to web designers, according to Francina R. Harrison, founder of "The Career Engineer" website and author of "A Mind to Work: The Life and Career Planning Guide for People Who Need to Work!"
"Digital artistry on the Internet - also known as web design - pays well because businesses need that service," says Harrison. "But there's no need for a bachelor's degree," she adds, noting that a web designer's work is really based on his or her creativity and experience, two things that can't be taught.
"Demand for computer-based skills - such as web design - is so great that companies are less and less concerned with a candidate's academic background, and more focused on the skills the candidate possesses," adds Amy Moynihan, higher education researcher and content manager at Hanover Research, a leading higher education research firm.

Career #2 - Diagnostic Medical Sonographer

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You don't have to be a doctor with a fancy M.D. degree to help figure out what's ailing a patient. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, diagnostic medical sonographers help doctors by creating images of the body's organs using diagnostic imaging equipment and analyzing the results.
What You Need: Doctors need years of medical school and training to conduct and analyze diagnostic tests on patients. Don't have time for all that? The Department of Labor says that diagnostic medical sonographers just need an associate's degree or a postsecondary certificate, with many employers also requiring professional certification.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program.
High-Pay Factor: "Demand for this position is high and supply is low," says Harrison, noting that right now certification boards are okay with technicians just having the associate's degree.
According to Bakke, there's more to this job than what you learn in class. "Most of the skills needed to succeed are ones you don't typically learn in school," says Bakke. "These skills - such as compassionately interacting with patients and having a great bedside manner - are usually developed with practice over time."

Career #3 - Network and Computer Systems Administrator

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If you've got a natural knack for keeping computers running smoothly, you might not need a fancy degree to prepare to pursue a great career. As the U.S. Department of Labor emphasizes, network and computer systems administrators are responsible for the computer networks that are critical to just about every organization; supporting, organizing, and installing their computer systems.
What You Need: While you might think a position of such responsibility would require a massive educational pedigree, this is not always the case. According to the Department of Labor, some employers are hiring network and computer systems administrators with just a postsecondary certificate. Just keep in mind that most do require a bachelor's degree in a subject related to computer or information science.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Computer Science Program.
High-Pay Factor: It's hard to imagine a field that doesn't require a bachelor's degree offering a median salary of over $70K a year, but Bakke explains: "This career doesn't necessarily require a bachelor's degree because there are a variety of certifications available that will make you attractive to an employer," says Bakke. "Plus, if you have a decent amount of experience as a technician, you've likely encountered a lot of the issues that an administrator will have to deal with."
Harrison points out that the high-pay factor may relate to how vital the systems these workers protect are to companies.
"[These] companies have to protect their networks and their costly computer equipment - and they will pay handsomely to do that." But, she adds, "The six-figure money is made with an advanced degree, difficult [to earn] certifications and significant experience."

Career #4 - Dental Hygienist

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Do you want to help make the world better one smile at a time? Like dentists, dental hygienists care for your teeth; cleaning them, examining your teeth and gums for oral diseases, taking dental x-rays, and more, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Unlike dentists, dental hygienists don't need years of dental school to help people with their teeth. They don't even need a bachelor's degree.
What You Need: Dental hygienists usually need an associate's degree in dental hygiene to pursue a career in this field, says the Department of Labor. All states require dental hygienists to be licensed, although requirements vary by state, the Department adds.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Dental Hygiene Program.
High-Pay Factor: The simple truth is that we need dental hygienists. "This is an amazing industry with growth potential - as everyone has teeth," says Harrison. "No doubt the associate's degree will get you in the door and working right away." If that seems too good to be true - given the pretty sizeable salary - keep in mind that this is a skill-based job, which is why you'll need the skills to succeed, rather than a lot of education.

Career #5 - Registered Nurse

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Nurses do many things that you might normally expect a doctor to do. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, registered nurses can administer medicine and treatment to patients, operate and monitor medical equipment, and help perform diagnostic tests and analyze the results, among other duties. What nurses don't do is spend years toiling away in medical school.
What You Need: Nurses typically get started with either an associate's degree in nursing (ADN), a diploma from an approved nursing program, or a bachelor's of science in nursing (BSN), according to the Department of Labor. They must also be licensed.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Registered Nursing Program.
High-Pay Factor: Again - we need nurses. And the need is so great that it makes the associate's degree a very valuable commodity, according to Harrison. "This is one of the best associate's degree programs out there, as there is a shortage of nurses," says Harrison. "Current state licensure only requires an associate's degree [from an accredited school] to take your RN exams."
Just keep in mind that while an associate's degree can get you started, it might not be enough for advancement down the road. "You will always have a job with this degree," Harrison adds. "But your growth [with an associate's degree] is limited, and you will only be a floor nurse in most cases. For higher pay in nursing, a bachelor's in nursing is golden."

Smart Career Moves for Middle-Aged Workers

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Smart mid-career moves

Burnt out at your current job or ready to reenter the workforce? Your past experience could serve you well in one of these careers.

Have you fallen out of love with your current job? The first step is realizing it. The next step is moving on.
Does that seem easier said than done? While it's true that making a career transition will take some effort, but the potential reward - a new career that you enjoy - is high. Plus, there are many jobs in which your prior experience might be an advantage, not a hindrance. If you've taken a little hiatus from working to raise a family, there are smart career moves you can make as well.
Keep reading to learn more about how to make the transition to six hot careers.

Career #1: Personal Financial Advisor

Find Degree Programs Perhaps you're the king or queen of your household's budgeting and super savvy when it comes to saving. Then you may want to use your head for numbers in a new arena as a personal financial advisor.
If you choose to pursue this role, you might find yourself offering clients advice on investments as well as insurance and tax decisions, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.
Why It's Well-Suited for Mid-life: Your mature perspective could win over clients in this career, says Tim Dugger, a career coach at Career Café, a company that offers career coaching in Indianapolis, Ind.
"Bringing more wisdom and life experience, mid-career individuals can relate better and more easily gain the trust of a wider segment of the population," he explains.
A background in sales and knowledge of complex regulations and financial analysis in an area such as real estate is ideal, says Joe Weinlick, vice president of marketing at, a career network focused on helping people grow and succeed professionally. Experience as an accounting and finance manager who enjoys working closely with people can also be a great background, he adds.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Finance Program.
In terms of credentials, a bachelor's degree is commonly needed to pursue a career as a personal financial advisor, says the Department of Labor. While employers usually don't require a specific area of study, degrees in finance, accounting, economics, business, mathematics or law are all suitable.

Career #2: Social Worker

Find Degree Programs If you've done some mid-life soul searching, you may have realized that you don't want to spend another day toiling away in a meaningless job. In that case, you may want to consider a career in social work, where you can put that big heart of yours to good use.
If you make the switch, you might find yourself helping people cope and solve their problems, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. You might also evaluate clients' needs and develop improvement plans.
Why It's Well-Suited for Mid-Life: This type of work offers people the chance to make a difference in the lives of others, says Dugger. "With a few years and maybe a child or two under their belt, people's perspective on life often changes," says Dugger. "As we mature, one of the single biggest things I've heard from my coaching clients is the desire for more meaning in their work."
Perhaps you have come from another line of work where you've developed strong interpersonal, listening, and problem-solving skills over the years. These are key qualities to have as a social worker, according to the Department of Labor.
Additionally, this would be a good switch for teachers who are ready to leave the education system but still want to make a difference, says Dugger. Clergy members may also find this type of work appealing.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Psychology Program.
While previous relevant work experience is valuable, education is essential. For entry-level positions, the Department says a bachelor's degree in social work is the most common requirement. Do you have a psychology or sociology background? The Department says some employers may hire candidates who have a bachelor's degree in these fields or other related specialties.

Career #3: Medical and Health Services Manager

Find Degree Programs Do you feel like your career is flat lining? Well, it may be time to shock some life back into it by pursuing a booming career as a medical and health services manager.
If you're looking for variety, this may be the right job for you. In this role, you may have the opportunity to work in a variety of settings, such as hospitals or doctor offices, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Your duties may also vary from keeping up to date with laws and regulations to representing your office on governing boards and investor meetings.
Why It's Well-Suited for Mid-life: "Since doctors and medical professionals don't tend to be good administrators, they rely on business professionals [such as medical and health services managers] to manage their practice, facility, or department," says Weinlick.
"While prior health care experience is ideal, HR and accounting managers, as well as others with management experience in a complex regulatory environment, could successfully transition into this role," he explains.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Medical and Health Care Administration Program.
As for education, prospective medical and health services managers should have a bachelor's in health administration, says the Department of Labor. Master's degrees are also common in areas such as health services, business administration, long-term care administration, public health, or public administration.

Career #3: Technical Writer

Find Degree Programs Sure, the last time you wrote something substantial may have been a decade or two ago in college. But you've probably written reports and presentations at work since then. Heck, even writing a perfectly worded email takes skill. So if you'd like to make writing your sole professional focus, a career as a technical writer may be right up your alley.
So what exactly would you write about? In this profession, you might help communicate complex technical information into more understandable lingo for instruction manuals, journal articles and more, notes the U.S. Department of Labor.
Why It's Well-Suited for Mid-Life: This job requires breaking down complex concepts into simplified, easier to understand language, which is something most mid-career professionals have experience with, says Weinlick.
Plus, you could break into the field with some flexibility since some technical writers are freelancers or contractors, he says.
"It can be a great career for someone with experience in a technological field, such as programming or engineering, who is seeking an independent work environment," says Weinlick.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Communications Program.
But you'll need more than the work experience on your resume. Employers generally prefer a bachelor's degree in journalism, English, or communications, says the Department of Labor. Knowledge of a specialized field, such as medicine or engineering may also be required for many writing jobs. And because of the growing use of online technical documentation, web design experience is also helpful, notes the Department.

Career #5: Survey Researcher

Find Degree Programs Not shy about digging for answers? Or perhaps you've proven that you're a results-driven worker in your current career. You might want to apply your curiosity and work ethic in a new career as a survey researcher.
In this profession, you would be responsible for creating surveys and interpreting data, says the U.S. Department of Labor. Survey researchers ask questions in order to collect data for various companies or organizations who want to understand people's attitudes, opinions, or desires.
Why It's Well-Suited for Mid-Life: This is a suitable switch for a number of careers, including political scientists, sociologists, market research analysts, or others who are used to analyzing data or behavior and want to play a role in creating the research itself, says Weinlick.
"Good survey researchers know how to crunch numbers and how to identify meaningful data and trends. So if this is your strong suit, this might be the field for you," he adds.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Business Program.
Education is also essential in this field. While a bachelor's degree is sufficient for some entry level positions, most technical positions require a master's degree or Ph.D., says the Department of Labor. Undergraduate students may also benefit from taking business courses and social science courses. These professionals can have a master's degree in a variety of fields, including marketing or survey research, statistics, and the social sciences.

Career #6: Preschool Teacher

Find Degree Programs Are you looking to return to the workforce after taking a break to raise a family? Or are you just ready for a change of pace? If the idea of working with children seems fulfilling, you might want to consider pursuing a career as a preschool teacher.
In this profession, you would care for children who have not entered kindergarten, usually between ages three and five, and teach them standard subjects such as reading and writing, says the U.S. Department of Labor.
Why It's Well-Suited for Mid-Life: This is a great choice for mid-career professionals who are looking for increased flexibility, especially while raising a family of their own, says Dugger. Or if you'd simply like to explore your passion for making a difference in children's lives, this is a great area to start, he adds.
Additionally, "Former teachers who either can't find a position or don't want to be in the traditional teaching system can easily turn to the role of preschool teacher," Dugger says.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Child Education Program.

Five high-growth, high-paying careers

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In-Demand, High-Pay Careers

These $75K+ careers are projected to experience rapid growth from 2012 to 2022.

Thinking about pursuing a new career, but not sure where to start?
Following your heart has its rewards, but going after jobs with high growth - and pay - potential may prove the wiser choice if you're looking to pay the bills.
To help you sift through all the options, we looked through the U.S. Department of Labor data to identify some career paths that are projected to grow by at least 16 percent through 2022 and have a median salary of at least $75,000 per year.*
Keep reading to find out which careers score high for both growth and pay.

Career #2: Civil Engineer

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20 percent
Those with strong leadership and decision-making abilities and a firm grasp of mathematics may be a good fit for civil engineering.
Designing and supervising large construction projects for infrastructure, such as roads, bridges, and sewage treatment systems, are among the responsibilities of civil engineers, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.
Why they're in-demand: Civil engineers are in demand for a variety of reasons, depending on the specialty, writes Erin Bushnell, SPHR, director of human resources at Pennoni Associates Inc., an engineering and design consulting firm based in Philadelphia, Pa. Among the top reasons is the need for improvements in the United States.
"For example, transportation engineers are highly sought after due to an increase in funding in many states," Bushnell says. "We have an aging infrastructure and engineers are critical to making those much needed major improvements."
Next step: Click to Find the Right Engineering Program.
How to prepare: Civil engineers need to have a bachelor's degree in civil engineering or one of its specialties, according to the Department of Labor. To work as a professional engineer, one must be licensed, which means their degree must be from an ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) accredited program.

Career #3: Medical and Health Services Manager

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Median annual salary*
Job growth from 2012 to 2022**
23 percent
Analytical, technical, and problem-solving skills are as critical as the abilities to communicate and interact well with others for success as a medical and health services manager. If that sounds like it plays to your strong suit, then you might consider this role.
Also known as a health care executive or administrator, these managers coordinate medical services either for an entire organization, such as a hospital, or a sector, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. They must also be able to adapt to evolving health care regulations and technologies.
Why they're in-demand: "Hospitals and doctors need someone to stay on top of the changes both in the law and technology, such as electronic records," says Papadopoulos. "They need someone to move them into the new century."
Next step: Click to Find the Right Health Care Administration Program
How to prepare: Requirements for this type of position vary by facility, according to the Department of Labor. Prospective managers should have a bachelor's degree in health administration. Master's degrees in health services, public health, public administration, long-term care administration, or business administration are also common, according to the Department.

Career #4: Software Developer, Systems

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Median annual salary*
Job growth from 2012 to 2022**
20 percent
If you're a creative type with strong analytical, communication, and problem-solving skills, you may be cut out for software development. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, systems developers design computer programs, like the ones that allow you to do a specific task or run a device or network.
Why they're in-demand: It makes sense that in an age when just about everyone has a smartphone and computer, this occupation is projected to experience high-growth.
"There's a big grab for talent because of the speed of change in the field and the level of skill required," says Papadopoulos.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Programming and Software Program.
How to prepare: The Department of Labor states that software developers usually earn a bachelor's degree in computer science, software engineering, or a related field, though some employers might prefer a master's degree. They must be skilled at programming and understanding new tools and computer languages.
The Department tells us that developers will also be expected to have knowledge of the industry in which they work. For example, one who develops bank software programs should have at least a basic understanding of finance.

Career #5: Financial Analyst

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Median annual salary*
Job growth from 2012 to 2022**
16 percent
Are you good with numbers and a great communicator, someone who is decisive and detail-oriented? Then you might be a match for a career in the financial industry.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, financial analysts study the performance of stocks, bonds, and other financial instruments to help individuals and businesses assess potential and current investments.
Why they're in-demand: Employers are looking for those who understand changing regulations, which are designed to prevent the type of crisis that happened in 2008 from recurring, says Greg Menzone, executive manager of the financial division of Professional Staffing Group in Boston, Mass.
Organizations, in particular, want people who can help them be as lean as possible but still have the necessary resources for growth, says Menzone.
"Companies want to hire the best of the best among financial analysts, so they can stay nimble and get ahead of the game," he adds. "They're demanding analysts who can give them a crystal ball to prepare for 2014, 2015, 2016, and beyond."

Dead-End Degrees That Will Get You Nowhere

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Dead-End Degrees That Will Get You Nowhere

It doesn't take a crystal ball to know which degrees have dim or bright job prospects...

Trying to decide on a college major? You may want to look before you leap. According to a study from the Georgetown University Center on Education, while the average unemployment rate for all recent college graduates* is 7.9 percent, this figure differs significantly from one degree to another.
So how's an aspiring student to decide?
"Choose a major that lines up well with your current experience or in an area you are passionate about," suggests David Bakke, a financial columnist at Money Crashers, an online resource for personal finance, education, and career advice. He also urges students to think carefully about life after college. "You might be searching for a job a bit longer if you choose a major in an industry that isn't doing much hiring."
Bakke's not the only one urging caution..."The job market is flooded with new grads who selected majors that offer little chance of employment or return on investment of their education. A little planning could help many students from graduating with an unmarketable degree in a competitive job market," says college and career strategist Elizabeth Venturini of, an online service providing personalized college and career plans for students.
To help with your planning, we've combed through the Georgetown Report's study to identify which degrees you may want to avoid, and which might have brighter prospects.
Keep reading to learn more...
Think twice about these degrees:

Dead-End Degree #1:Information Systems

While we often hear about how crucial technology will be to our future, that does not mean that all tech degrees are in-demand. Take a bachelor's in information systems. According to the Georgetown study, this degree had a whopping unemployment rate of 14.7 percent for recent college grads.
This degree is becoming outdated, says Bakke, "mostly due to the fact that computer software programs can now complete a lot of the tasks and responsibilities previously held by information systems majors," says Bakke.
Dead-set on earning this degree? "Partner your information systems major with a computer science major or minor to make yourself more marketable," Bakke recommends. Why? "Computer science has more to do with developing new and cutting-edge technology [than information systems], a skill that will always be in demand in today's tech-driven world," Bakke explains.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Information Systems Program.

Hot Degree #1:Nursing

Find Programs Choosing to earn a bachelor's in nursing can be rewarding in more ways than one. In addition to preparing to pursue a career helping others, the outlook appears bright. The unemployment rate for recent nursing graduates was 4.8 percent, reports the Georgetown study.
"The demand for RNs continues to grow, primarily due to a growing and aging population," says Jeremy Enck, vice president of sales at Fortus Healthcare Resources, a leading healthcare recruiting firm. "There is a shortage of good prospective employees with [registered nursing] degrees."
Next step: Click to Find the Right Nursing Program.
Want to stand out? "?Attain a [bachelor's of science in nursing], learn another language, and be flexible on where you want to reside, and you will never want for another job as a nurse," says Enck.
Potential career:**

Dead-End Degree #2:Architecture

Hoping to make your mark as the next Frank Lloyd Wright? Not so fast - a bachelor's degree in architecture might mean facing a higher unemployment rate than you're expecting. According to the Georgetown study, the unemployment rate for recent college graduates who majored in architecture was 12.8 percent.
This is in large part due to the housing market collapse, says Bakke. "Although it's on its way back, it still has a ways to go - and the housing market isn't expected to fully recover at least for another five years."
Dead-set on earning this degree? "Participate in an internship to improve your skill set and make key business contacts," suggests Bakke.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Architecture Program.

Hot Degree #2:Elementary Education

Find Programs Have you always enjoyed learning? Perhaps you'd like to be on the other side of the teacher's desk one day. Then, a bachelor's degree in elementary education might be right for you. Plus, recent college grads who majored in elementary education saw a low unemployment rate of just 5 percent, according to the Georgetown study.
"This degree faces a lower unemployment rate mostly due to a teacher shortage, especially in low-income areas of the country," says Bakke. He adds that a high retirement rate amongst teachers is one more reason this degree is in such high demand.
Next step: Click to Find the Right K-12 Education Program.
Want to stand out? "Get your master's degree in elementary education to improve marketability," says Bakke. The U.S. Department of Labor notes that some states actually require teachers to get their master's degree after earning their teaching certification.
Potential careers:**

Dead-End Degree #3:Anthropology

Fascinated by world cultures? Before you spend the time, energy - and money - on a bachelor's in anthropology, take a look at its unemployment rate: 12.6 percent, notes the Georgetown study.
"The unemployment rate for this major is so high mainly because this degree is only good for those seeking an educator position at the college level," says Bakke. "Pursuing a career as a college educator is difficult, but you'll typically need a master's degree or more, and there just aren't that many students choosing to take classes in anthropology."
And beyond the academic setting, there just aren't many job prospects. "The skill set of anthropology majors just isn't in high demand," Bakke explains. "Skills learned studying anthropology simply aren't relevant in the general job market."
Dead-set on earning this degree? "Shoot for an advanced degree," Bakke says. Findings from the Georgetown study appear to back this up. According to the study, the unemployment rate dropped to 4.6 percent for graduate degree-holders in this field.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Program.

Hot Degree #3:Finance

Find Programs Money talks, and this bachelor's degree could help you join the conversation. According to the Georgetown study, the unemployment rate for recent finance graduates was 5.9 percent.
This is mostly due to "an uptick in government regulation in the financial industry... which makes finance majors highly marketable," says Bakke.
The recent passage of the Dodd-Frank Act has made it a lot more difficult for financial firms and related businesses to comply with new standards and regulations, Bakke explains. "The Act also calls for the creation of many different offices, councils, and bureaus that businesses must adhere to. That has resulted in increased marketability for finance majors."
Next step: Click to Find the Right Finance Program.
Want to stand out? "Choose a specialty such as accounting or economics," suggests Bakke. "A specialized degree makes you stand out more to a company looking to fill a specific financial position."
Potential careers:**

Dead-End Degree #4:Film, Video, and Photography Arts

Think a bachelor's degree in film, video, or photography will mean a life of creative fulfillment and satisfaction? It's a beautiful dream, but the reality might make you reconsider. According to the Georgetown study, the unemployment rate for recent film, video, and photography arts graduates was 11.4 percent.
"This is mainly because employment opportunities for these majors are limited geographically to New York City and Los Angeles," explains Bakke. "Outside of the major entertainment centers in this country, there's little demand for this major." Worse, even if you do live in a major entertainment center, your chances of finding a job aren't great, since there's a great deal of competition in this industry, he explains.
Dead-set on earning this degree? "Try to find an internship (preferably a paid one) or volunteer at an appropriate organization while you're still in school to start obtaining real-world experience," says Bakke.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Film & Video Program.

Hot Degree #4:Marketing and Marketing Research

Find Programs Do you like to keep your finger on the pulse of social media? If you want to translate that interest into a career, consider pursuing a bachelor's degree in marketing or market research. The unemployment rate for marketing and marketing research recent graduates was 6.6 percent, according to the Georgetown study.
One reason that rate is so low? "Every single organization, if they plan to be successful, will have a marketing function," says Dawn Edmiston, assistant professor of management and marketing at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, Pa.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Marketing Program.
Want to stand out? "Study social media while in school," Bakke suggests. "Social media is a key element in the marketing strategy of most businesses. It's a must-have skill set for marketers."
Potential careers:**

Dead-End Degree #5:Political Science

"House Of Cards" fan? Don't assume earning your bachelor's in political science will land you a job working for a White House staffer. Political science had a high unemployment rate of 11.1 percent for recent college graduates, notes the Georgetown study. Wondering why?
"The main reason for this is that this major is typically suited only for those seeking to run for political office," says Bakke. "A bachelor's degree in political science isn't good for general business, because the things you learn just aren't applicable outside the world of politics." Even if you hope to run for office, "There's very little projected job growth in this area," according to Bakke.
Dead-set on earning this degree? "Choose an additional major or minor to make yourself more marketable," advises Bakke. His suggestion? "Partner it with a major or minor in business administration, which is much more attractive to potential employers."
Next step: Click to Find the Right Program.

Hot Degree #5:Business Management and Administration

Find Programs Looking for a versatile degree with good prospects? Consider business management and administration. Aside from the professional doors this degree could open, the Georgetown study lists the unemployment rate for business management and administration majors at 7.8 percent.
"The unemployment rate is so close to the average more than likely because of the recent recession and its effect on businesses," Bakke says. "I would expect this number to decrease as the economy continues to recover." Why?
"Business management and administration majors learn about organizing, planning, and directing and leading a business," Bakke explains. "Since that covers such a broad spectrum, there is a high demand for these majors from virtually all businesses and companies."
Next step: Click to Find the Right Business Administration Program.
Want to stand out? "Consider going for an MBA to make yourself even more marketable," says Bakke.
Potential careers:**

5 Careers That Are In Crisis

Source: Yahoo
5 Careers That Are In Crisis

While some careers are projected to disappear in droves, others are experiencing booming growth.

Do you have a sneaking suspicion that your current field resembles an endangered species? If so, you might not be alone in feeling like a dinosaur.
According to Las Vegas-based career expert Denise Nicole Cook, people working in professions that are experiencing increased automation and technological change could find their jobs practically extinct in the not-too-distant future.
"Pay attention to the industry you're in, because even if it's not currently automated, it may be automated in the future," says Cook, founder of The Honest Info career counseling firm.
Sound like your career, or one you're planning to pursue? Keep reading to learn more about which jobs are in crisis - and which of their counterparts appear to be booming.

Career in Crisis #1:Farmer, Rancher and other Agricultural Manager

Farmers were once, almost literally, the bread and butter of the U.S. workforce. Not anymore. Sadly, the U.S. Department of Labor reports that farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers will see their workforce numbers decline by 19 percent - or 179,900 jobs - from 2012 to 2022.
Why it's in crisis: International markets for food and crops are contributing to the plight of U.S. farmers, according to Cook.
"Farming has become such a global industry," Cook says. "It's just not as lucrative in the United States as it once was." Perhaps one reason it's not as lucrative is that prices are increasing. According to the Department of Labor, the price of seeds, chemicals, machinery, and land may increase.  
Cook also points to cultural changes having a negative effect on farming jobs. Working on a farm - now owned by corporations instead of Mom and Pop - simply doesn't have the appeal it once had in this country, she says.

Booming Career #1:Registered Nurse

If you're compassionate and caring, you may want to look into registered nursing as a career option. The U.S. Department of Labor reports that this field will need to increase their workforce by 19 percent, or 526,800 new jobs, from 2012 to 2022. That's right: over half a million new jobs.
Why it's booming: As the population ages, they will have more medical problems and will need more nurses to take care of them, says the Department of Labor.
And this is no task for medical equipment. Taking care of someone and curing injuries is pretty hard to automate, Cook says. "If we go into a hospital, the diagnostic capability (of equipment) is pretty limited. Nurses are needed to interpret the results, to give them meaning. Nurses provide the human factor and interaction between whatever the data, injuries, or symptoms are."
How to get started: To prepare for this career, you have a few options. The Department reports that you can choose one of three career paths: a bachelor's degree in nursing (BSN), an associate's degree in nursing (ADN), or a diploma from an approved nursing program. From there, you'll need to get licensed.

Career in Crisis #2:Postal Service Worker

When was the last time you went to the post office? Don't remember? That's part of the problem for postal service workers like clerks, mail carriers, and mail sorters.
In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor says workers in this field will see their numbers dip by 28 percent from 2012 to 2022, or 139,100 jobs.  
Why it's in crisis: "Unfortunately, people don't go to the post office anymore," Cook says. "If they have to mail things, like checks, or bill pay, they do it electronically."
The demise of snail mail is a contributing factor to the dwindling numbers of postal service workers, Cook says. "Email is the quick fix, immediate satisfaction, and gratification. You hit click and send, it's gone. You don't have to worry about the right paper, envelope, or stamp," she adds.
Another contributing factor: The Postal Service's usage of automated sorting systems to reduce the time that mail carriers spend processing mail, says the Department of Labor. This should allow carriers to increase the size of their routes and reduce the need to hire more carriers.

Booming Career #2:Software Developer

Would you like to turn futuristic ideas into present-day software and applications? If so, consider pursuing a career as a software developer.
Between the years 2012 and 2022, this field will hire over 200,000 new software developers - increasing their numbers by 19 percent - the U.S. Department of Labor reports.
Why it's booming: Cook says the demand for products using computer technology is a driving force behind the booming hiring numbers for software developers. "Software developers conceptualize programs that will do things that businesses need to thrive," she says.
And as the demand for new applications and software rises, so does the need increase for software developers to improve the technology that's used to make smartphones and other devices perform at higher levels, according to Cook. "Software developers aren't going anywhere as technology is increasing at a more rapid pace," she says.
How to get started: You may want to consider a bachelor's degree in computer science, software engineering, or related field, as according to the Department, software developers usually have one. A mathematics degree is also acceptable.

Career in Crisis #3:News Analyst, Reporter, Correspondent

Once a staple of people's viewing and reading habits, news analysts and reporters are finding their careers being treated like, well, yesterday's news. This field is projected to experience a 13 percent drop in their numbers - losing 7,200 jobs - from 2012 to 2022, says the U.S. Department of Labor.
Why it's in crisis: Competition from online and social media is partly responsible for the decline in jobs for traditional news reporters, according to Cook. "All of these technologies (social media applications) keep us connected in homes of people we don't know, but unfortunately that's altering people's needs or desires to tune into the news or newspaper. In an industry where they once reported news, now they have to report on the cute cat flipping and answering the doorbell."
"Everyone thinks that they have the best story and can write it better than anyone else. Technology makes it so that everyone has access to a worldwide audience if they can promote themselves," Cook adds.

Booming Career #3:Market Research Analyst

The booming nature of employment for market research analysts can be reflected in the U.S. Department of Labor's projections, which say their numbers will grow by 32 percent between 2012 and 2022. So if you're good with numbers and like analyzing data, this may be a career to consider.
Why it's booming: Businesses increasingly rely on complex data to gauge consumer habits, says the Department of Labor. And in doing so, "companies are better able to market directly to their target population."
And consumer data is fairly useless until market research analysts can put their spin on it, says Cook. "You have a number of [software] programs that can run data, but until you interpret the data, it's just numbers," Cook says. "Market research analysts provide the human interpretation part of it. You can have someone fill out a piece of paper without anyone there, but you need humans to put the data in layman's terms."
How to get started: To pursue this career, you'll need a bachelor's degree, typically in market research or a related field, according to the Department. However, many analysts have degrees in fields such as computer science, statistics, and math - with others having a background in fields like business administration or communications.

Career in Crisis #4:Travel Agents

Travel agents help travelers plan trips and book flights - but so do Expedia, Travelocity, and Kayak. So looking for a job in this field might not make sense - especially when you consider the fact that thousands of travel agents are projected to lose their jobs in the coming years.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, between 2012 and 2022, employment will drop by 12 percent - or 8,900 jobs.
Why it's in crisis: Technology is replacing people, says Cook. "If a computer can do it, there's a likelihood that the computer is going to be an intermediary." Today, advances in technology allow you to use your phone to purchase your ticket and scan it to board the plane, says Cook in reference to the declining need for travel agents.
Some good news: There should still remain some need for travel agents. The Department of Labor reports that their expertise will continue to be required by those who need customized travel experiences.

Booming Career #4:Elementary School Teacher

If you enjoy helping others learn new things, now may be the time to make a career out of it. The U.S. Department of Labor says that employment of elementary school teachers will increase by 12 percent, creating 167,900 new jobs between 2012 and 2022.
Why it's booming: The number of students enrolling in elementary schools is projected to increase, according to the Department of Labor. In turn, the number of teachers will also increase.
And although online education seems to be a growing trend in higher education, Cook says elementary school teachers in face-to-face classroom settings will remain in high demand.
Elementary school teachers are needed because children must have one-on-one interaction during the formative years, Cook says. "The face-to-face connection will still be a need at that age," she says. "It's how children learn."
"If a student has a learning difficulty, a teacher can see it and address it," she adds.
How to get started: A bachelor's degree in elementary education is a must-have for elementary school teachers, according to the Department. If you want to teach in public school, you'll need to get a state-issued certification or license.

Career in Crisis #5:File Clerk

Thinking of pursuing a job as a file clerk? You may want to rethink that plan. File clerks are discovering that handling files isn't what it used to be. In fact, the number of file clerks will drop by 5,300 workers from 2012 through 2022, says the U.S. Department of Labor.
Why it's in crisis: The emergence of electronic and online filing systems is having an adverse effect on the hiring prospects of file clerks, according to Cook. Where people in this position were once needed to physically handle paper documents, they now spend most of their time gathering documents electronically, she says.
And you don't need so many people to go to archives and dusty rooms to access data, Cook says. The information people need is at the tip of their fingers, so a lot of the people who performed that job function are no longer at use.

Booming Career #5:Accountant

Let's do a quick math equation. If the U.S. Department of Labor reports that 1,275,400 accountants and auditors were employed in 2012 and it also projects that they'll experience a 13 percent employment increase from 2012 to 2022, how many new jobs will be created in this ten year time frame?
If your answer was 166,700, you may want to include this career in your list of jobs to pursue.
Why it's booming: Cook says the demand for accountants is predicated by a climate of legal and financial volatility. "...[T]he average person can't keep up with the ever-changing tax laws and banking laws," Cook says. "As an individual or business, you need somebody to do that for you."
Typically accountants are the people who keep track of changing laws that could affect the financial fortunes of businesses and individuals alike. "The laws are getting more complicated and the accountant is there to keep you organized," Cook says. "Accountants are key to economic success because they will find ways to maximize dollars."
How to get started: According to the Department, you'll need at least a bachelor's degree in accounting or related field. Of course, some employers may prefer master's degree holders in either accounting or business administration with a concentration in accounting.

How to Earn Your Degree From Bed

Source: Yahoo

Learn from Bed

Educational options are expanding beyond the traditional classroom, making it possible to earn a degree anywhere, anytime - even from the comfort of your own bed.

If you're clinging to your covers and slapping the snooze button a few extra times but your conscience is nagging at you to finally get going on earning that college degree, take heart.
Thanks to flexible online options, you could earn your degree without ever leaving your bed. Online degrees allow you to study just about anytime, just about anywhere, and they can even have advantages over traditional programs.
As Chris Calkins, outreach assistant professor and executive director of the World Campus Master's of Health Administration program at Penn State University says, studying online can "help students build skills in a more structured way that coincides with real-time examples and projects, and offer a diversity of perspectives for students to explore."
Of course, earning an online degree isn't a simple matter and it does require effort and dedication, but the format does offer options for those who run into obstacles with a traditional setting.
So, pull up your laptop, puff up your pillows, and snuggle in to take a look at the following seven degrees you can earn virtually from the comfort of your bed.

Degree #1: Bachelor's in Business Administration

Find Degree Programs Instead of lying in bed watching "The Apprentice," why not use that time prepping to pursue a real life career in the business world with an online bachelor's degree in business administration?
Online Benefits: A degree in business administration involves project-based learning, like examining real-life business case studies. This lends itself well to online instruction, according to Shari Smith, an online workshop and faculty development facilitator for the Sloan Consortium, a professional online learning society.
In an online setting, the student population is also likely to be more diverse, says Calkins, who explains that an online class is likely to contain new high school graduates as well as older students who bring years of work and real-life experiences to the table. This mix of student experiences changes the teaching dynamic, according to Calkins, and results in students who are better able to take on skills and content from very diverse sources.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Online Business Administration Program.
What You Might Study: According to the College Board, a non-profit organization committed to excellence and equity in education, business administration and management majors study how to orchestrate an organization's activities. They may take courses like business policy and strategy, business ethics and law, operations management, and human resources management.
Potential Careers:*

Degree #2: Bachelor's in Computer Science

Find Degree Programs Ever find yourself in bed late at night browsing social media, reading articles, or even playing games on your tablet? If so, you might want to think about parlaying your natural computing inclination into earning a bachelor's degree in computer science online.
Online Benefits: Online computer science programs often offer instructional tools that could help a variety of students learn at different paces. Smith notes that online students are better able to "chunk" computing concepts, where both instructors and students hone in on one idea like learning html code. "Some students might get it in one hour, and for others it might take a week," Smith explains, "but with online learning, they can create a workable timeframe better than they can in a face-to-face class."
Next step: Click to Find the Right Online Computer Science Program.
What You Might Study: If you choose this major, you may learn computer languages like C++ and Java, according to the College Board. Pursuing a computer science degree may also involve building your teamwork and problem-solving skills.
Potential Careers:*

Degree #3: Bachelor's in Graphic Design

Find Degree Programs If you're the type of person who enjoys translating concepts into visual images, by hand or digitally, you may enjoy pursuing an online bachelor's degree in graphic design, where you can learn to refine your designing skills from the comfort of your own home.
Online Benefits: Calkins says the distance created by online learning makes instructors more objective and they often judge assignments without meeting you personally, so it can be a good way to build confidence and skills if you are uncomfortable with a traditional classroom full of fellow students.
Many graphic design elements are used in project-based assignments like creating videos, according to Smith. "Video is a huge element in this discipline and there are plenty of online tools to allow you to use it in your online studies," she says, so students are practicing applicable skills as part of their studies.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Online Graphic Design Program.
What You Might Study: Students pursuing a bachelor's degree in graphic arts could tackle typical coursework like graphic design techniques, Photoshop for designers, and typography, according to the College Board. You can also expect to try your hand at real-world projects such as creating corporate logos, websites, and publication design in studio classes for this major.
Potential Career:*

Degree #4: Bachelor's in K-12 Education

Find Degree Programs If you're interested in shaping the minds of young people but not keen on fighting traffic to hear content that could be just as effectively delivered online, you could consider an online bachelor's degree in K-12 education.
Online Benefits: "When you consider that more textbook and instructional materials are moving online, you realize that you are already halfway toward an online learning environment," says Smith. These successfully adapted formal elements of education give more weight to an online degree in the field, she explains.
Smith points out that with the ease of technology, students don't have to miss out on collaborating with their classmates on projects or research. She also emphasizes that the online environment teaches these education students about tools they could use one day in their own classrooms.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Online K-12 Education Program.
What You Might Study: According to the College Board, coursework typically covers topics like educational psychology, teaching methods, and education of the exceptional child.
Potential Careers:*

Degree #5: Bachelor's in Health Services Administration

Find Degree Programs If you're a leader and a problem solver with good organization skills, you might be interested in pursuing a health services administration degree from the comfort of your home.
Online Benefits: The diversity of an online classroom can really benefit those studying health care administration, particularly when they interact regularly with others on school-wide social networks and share ideas on student discussion boards. The online format allows students to gain access to all types of health care professionals, from those working in hospitals to those working in long-term care facilities. This can assist them in their studies, explains Calkins.
Studying for an online bachelor's degree in health administration may be particularly helpful in pursuing advancement at a health care facility in a rural location, as well. "It is so difficult for rural health care providers to recruit both clinical staff like nurses and administrative talent," says Calkins. "So, when they find it, they are motivated to build that person's skill sets and online programs help encourage them to continue their education without having to leave."
Next step: Click to Find the Right Online Health Care Administration Program.
What You Might Study: Those pursuing an online health services administration bachelor's degree may learn about the services provided by health care facilities as well as how to run these facilities. Typically, students take coursework like health care finance, human resources management, and the economics of health care, according to the College Board.
Potential Career:*

Degree #6: Bachelor's in Accounting

Find Degree Programs Those who enjoy looking at life as a balance sheet might find that the benefits of pursing an online bachelor's degree in accounting from the convenience of their cozy bed outweigh any negatives.
Online Benefits: Online accounting programs have more potential to expose students to different applications from a wide-range of fields and industries, especially if the online classroom is comprised of students who are already employed, says Calkins.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Online Accounting Program.
What You Might Study: Accounting majors learn how to gather, analyze and record information about a person's or an organization's financial performance, according to the College Board. Coursework could include cost accounting, auditing, and business law.
Potential Careers:*

Degree #7: Bachelor's in Criminal Justice

Find Degree Programs After snuggling in bed watching your favorite late night crime show, you could slide over to your laptop and experience the thrill of learning about the justice system by studying for an online degree in criminal justice.
Online Benefits: An online bachelor's degree in criminal justice lends itself especially well to the discipline's research projects, according to Smith. "You can use tools to discuss a project about comparing laws between states and then you are already online to start researching," she says.
Calkins says an online setting can provide a better student support group, which can be especially helpful for those studying criminal and social issues, which can be emotionally-challenging subjects.
"The demands of working with these populations can require a built-in support community," he says. "And the online structure can make it easier for them to be available to each other in times of stress and upset."
Next step: Click to Find the Right Online Criminal Justice Program.
What You Might Study: According to the College Board, a criminal justice degree is an interdisciplinary major and students typically study a little bit of everything, from law and psychology to public administration and juvenile justice.
Potential Careers:*

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