The 15-Minute-a-Day Habit That Can Boost Your Career

The 15-Minute-a-Day Habit That Can Boost Your Career

By Hannah Hamilton
Monster Contributing Writer
If you’re interested in an easy way to improve your job performance and boost your career, it’s time to start a writing habit. A study from Harvard Business School tested whether taking 15 minutes at the end of a work day to reflect on that day’s work improved their performance and found the participants tasked with daily written reflection did 22.8 percent better on an assessment than the control group.
But wouldn’t internal reflection by itself be enough to bolster performance? “My speculation would be that writing things down would be more beneficial as the act of writing imposes a discipline on us to stay focused,” says paper co-author Brad Staats, an associate professor of operations at the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School.
Reflection forced people to process their days, find patterns and link actions. Some people might think the experiment focused on the successes of the day, but Staats says the parameters of the experiment when explained to the journaling employees didn’t specify giving the reflections a positive or negative slant.
“What we wanted was for them to reflect more on whatever they thought was most important from the day,” Staats explains. “The positive/negative point is a great question, but not one we looked at here. In other research, Francesca and I have explored how individuals struggle to learn from failure, but when they accept internal responsibility for their actions then they learn from failure.”
One idea of why a writing habit helps is that thoughts running through your mind about your day suddenly become significant and deliberate catalysts for change through thinking them over and writing them down. “Reflection on experience and learning facilitates deep processing, which allows you to retain information for a long time — as opposed to simply cramming it in your brain and promptly forgetting it after the test,” says career coach George A. Boyd.
Despite taking a portion of time out of the work day, essentially working less than the control group, the new distribution of energy towards reflection heavily impacted performance. Even Staats was surprised by how much of a difference the exercise made.
“I thought reflection might help a bit, but I didn’t expect it to make such a meaningful impact on performance,” Staats said. “These people weren’t spending extra time at work — they were spending 15 minutes less on training each day so they could reflect, however by reallocating their time in such a small way we see a significant, positive impact on performance.”

Making writing a habit could be a simple way to both gather your bearings and be a better employee, but it is also a hard habit to adopt and keep consistently. “In talking to people, one of the real challenges with reflection is finding the discipline to maintain it,” Staats warns. “That means people need to find ways to continue the practice — whether that is blocking your calendar, finding an accountability partner who might also reflect at the same time, or something else that works well for you.”

The new office etiquette: Rules for today's workplace

Shannon Lee,

Gone are the days when office etiquette was clearly defined. In today's relaxed professional environment, conduct is more casual, which means it's often difficult to know what is OK and what isn't. Fortunately, some rules of workplace etiquette are universal.
These 12 tips can help you adjust to a new office or clean up your behavior in a place you've worked for years.
1. Avoid social media. Unless your job requires you to peruse social networking sites all day, avoid them while you're on the clock. Though surfing Facebook or Twitter might be tempting, it can be detrimental to your work performance and productivity, not to mention the way your boss perceives your enthusiasm -- or lack thereof -- for your job.
2. Take that phone call elsewhere. Everyone has a cellphone these days, so getting personal calls at work is pretty much unavoidable. But don't assume that just because your phone rings, it's OK to take it right there at your desk. If you get a personal call, excuse yourself and answer it in private. The last thing you want to do is air your personal business.
3. Gossip: The big no-no. Who hasn't been tempted to speculate on the lives of their co-workers? It's especially tempting when everyone else in the office is doing it. But remember that gossip says more about you than it does about the person you're discussing. Don't talk about others, and keep your personal life private to discourage water-cooler talk about you.
4. Keep emails formal. Email seems pretty casual, doesn't it? It isn't like correspondence on letterhead that requires careful composition and proofreading -- right? Contrary to popular belief, work emails should be held to the same formal standards that you would hold any other office correspondence. So toss the slang, get the punctuation right and proofread before you hit send.
5. Watch your language. No matter how comfortable you are with your co-workers, or how casual your office may seem, blurting out a curse word can get you noticed for all the wrong reasons. You don't want that accidental f-bomb to overshadow your work, so keep the language clean.
6. Stay tuned in to the world around you. Want to plug in your headphones and jam while you finish that report? Go ahead (if your office allows it), but don't make them a constant fixture on your head. In the workplace, having headphones on all day can come off as antisocial. Need to focus on a project? Sneak away to a conference room for a while.
7. Knock before entering. Sometimes an informal office atmosphere can go too far. That's especially true when people start drifting from one cubicle or office to the next, without bothering to knock or otherwise announce their presence. Treat others as though they are in the midst of serious business -- even if they aren't -- and knock before you enter their personal space.
8. Stay home if you're sick. It seems like an obvious rule, but when you're stuck in the rat race, dropping out for a few days of the flu can seem detrimental to your career. However, going to work sick does more harm than good. Not only does it make you feel worse and potentially spread your germs to others, when you're under the weather your productivity most likely suffers. Make life easier on everyone and use those sick days.
9. Remember that scents travel. Do you have an allergy to perfume or cologne? Do you get a headache when you smell spicy food? Some of your colleagues might. Keep those potent lunches away from your desk, and don't overdo it on the fragrances. Those around you will be grateful.
10. Dress like the rest. There are many places where expressing your unique style is a fantastic thing to do. The office is not one of them. To make sure you're dressing the part, use your boss's attire as an example. If you want to appeal to management, dress just a notch above the office norm.
11. Save the job search for home. Looking for a new job? Don't do it on company time. Not only might someone get wind of your search (and feed that information into the gossip mill), but taking time away from your current employer to look for a new one is just plain rude.
12. Remember that everyone has a life. Show respect for everyone's down-time by avoiding late-night emails, phone calls or anything else that might require someone from the office to respond after hours. Save those for the next business day. Leaving the office behind when you walk out the door is important for everyone -- so honor business hours, but make sure you honor your time off, too.

Whether you're in a high-stress office or a relaxed small business, etiquette matters. Brush up on it now to continue making a great impression on your boss, co-workers and clients.

10 things the college admissions office won't tell you

1. Not all grades are created equal
For the more than two million high school seniors who intend to go to college next year, the stomach-churning slog of filling out applications is in full swing.
And whether they'€™ll get a thick package announcing their admission or a thin, dream-dashing one-page letter (or their online equivalent) may well depend on their grade-point average. Grades account for about 75% of the typical admissions decision, according to the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC).
But not all good grades are created equal. In the eyes of the admissions officers at the nation'€™s more than 2,800 four-year colleges, an "A"€ earned at one high school may only be worth a "€œB" at a more rigorous one. And in recent years, colleges have given more weight to grades from designated college-prep courses — and the more exclusive the college, the more weight those grades get.
One reason colleges are getting choosier: Grade inflation. Research by the College Board, the organization that administers the SAT, shows that the average GPA for high school seniors rose from 2.64 in 1996 to 2.90 in 2006 — €”even as SAT scores remained essentially flat.
The researchers saw this as evidence that some teachers were "€œusing grades... to reward good efforts rather than achievement."€ (The College Board also noted that, based on their test scores, less than half of SAT takers — €”just 43% in the graduating class of 2013—were academically prepared for college work.)
All that said, admissions officers generally believe that if you have a good GPA in high school, you'€™ll probably have a good GPA in college.
"€œThe clear message (is that) hard work and good grades in high school matter, and they matter a lot,"€ said William Hiss, a retired dean of admissions at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine who co-wrote a February 2014 study on standardized testing.

2. We don'€™t trust your essay
Many colleges rely on a student'€™s application essay to create a fuller picture of the applicant. But in an era of helicopter parenting, colleges increasingly worry that these essays aren'€™t written by the student.
To combat the possibility that parents, siblings or school counselors may be ghostwriting essays, many colleges require an additional piece of school writing that has been graded by a teacher. "€œIf the application essay looks like it was written by Maya Angelou and the school work looks like Willy Loman'€™s, it will raise some eyebrows,"€ Hiss said.
At some schools, application essays have also been caught up in the debate over whether a student'€™s race, ethnicity or gender should be a factor in the college'€™s admissions decision. At some public universities where race and gender preferences are banned, admissions officers are encouraged to give less weight to the essay because it can give away clues about the race and gender of the applicant.

3. We'€™re having second thoughts about the SAT
For decades, the SAT has been considered the primary benchmark for students'€™ ability to handle college-level work. This year, more than 7 million students will take entrance exams like the SAT or ACT this year for college admission.
But at more schools, skepticism about the test is affecting admissions policy: About 800 out of the country's 2,800 four-year colleges now make the SAT optional.
Critics have long argued that the weight given to SAT scores gives an unfair advantage to wealthier students who can afford test-prep classes. That in itself makes the SAT suspect in some admissions officer'€™s eyes. "€œIt's leading to an increasing divide in this country of those who can afford it and those who can't,"€ says Steven Syverson, the former dean of admissions at Lawrence University in Appleton, Wis.
There are also growing doubts over how well the SAT predicts college performance. A study produced this year and endorsed by the NACAC looked at the performance of 123,000 students admitted to college between 2003 and 2010, about 30% of whom hadn'€™t taken the SAT or its counterpart, the ACT. The study found no significant differences in college GPAs or graduation rates between those who took either test and those who didn'€™t.
Syverson says many admissions officers are looking forward to the rollout in 2016 of a new SAT that is designed to better reflect typical high-school curricula.
Many admissions officers are now giving more weight to Advanced Placement tests, which, like the SAT, are administered by the College Board. In 2013, 2.2 million students took AP tests, up 6% from a year earlier and more than double the number a decade earlier. AP tests essentially reflect a test taker'€™s mastery of college-level skill and knowledge; successful test takers often can skip some entry-level college courses, and some scores can count toward a major.
"€œMost deans feel pretty good about AP results since they are based on more of a tight curriculum,"€ Hiss said.

4. Obsessing over class ranking? That'€™s adorable
In 1993, more than 40% of admissions counselors viewed class rank as "€œconsiderably important," according to the NACAC. By 2006, that figure had declined to under 20%.
Hiss notes that in a small class of 100 students, being outside the top 10% doesn'€™t mean that you'€™re not capable of doing college-level work. "€œIs the fourteenth-ranked student in that class still a good college prospect? The answer is probably yes."€
Where rank still comes in to play is at larger colleges, where "€œholistic"€ reviews of applicants aren'€™t possible. But at smaller, more selective schools, the interview, essays and teacher and counselor recommendations get greater weight than rank, the NACAC says.

5. It pays to make nice with your teacher
As skepticism grows over GPAs and test scores, some admissions officers are giving more weight to recommendations from high-school teachers and counselors.
Angel Perez, dean of admissions for Pitzer College in Claremont, Calif., says the most useful recommendations show that the student is intellectually curious and contributes to class discussions. "We also ask '€˜How does the student respond to setbacks, how does the student interact in teams?'" Perez says.

6. We only sound exclusive
There are only about 100 U.S. colleges offered admission to less than a third of their applicants in 2013, according to the U.S. News & World Report. But a low admissions rate can help a college look "exclusive" — €”improving its scores in national college-rankings — €”and admissions officers say that some colleges try to finesse that rate.
"Right, wrong, or indifferent, our culture values exclusivity,"€ said Perry Robinson, vice president and director of admissions at Denison University in Columbus, Ohio. "€œAnd yet it is one of the easiest figures to manipulate."€
Tim Groseclose, a professor at George Mason University who formerly served as a faculty adviser to the admissions committee at the University of California at Los Angeles, says some schools deliberately try to play with the numbers by getting more high school applicants to apply, even if they aren'€™t planning on attending. And Syverson, the former Lawrence admissions, says that colleges sometimes count incomplete packages as complete ones, the better to increase their applications-to-acceptances ratio.
Groseclose says that sometimes competitive schools encourage students with unique talents to apply even if their grades and test scores may not be among the best. And at times, he notes, that can work in the student'€™s favor: "€œI know of one school that admitted a student because they happened to be the stateĆ¢€™s horseshoe-pitching champion."
Does that mean Tom Cruise'€™s character in "Risky Business"€ really had a shot at getting in to Princeton? "€œSometimes it can be like hitting the lottery," Groseclose says.

7. Politics may determine whether you get in
The role of race and ethnicity has been a polarizing issue in admissions. The NACAC says that about one third of colleges and universities consider an applicant'€™s race as a factor.
At some public universities, racial admissions preferences have been banned by state law, though critics have accused some schools of working around those bans. In California, racial preferences were banned by state referendum in the 1990s. But Groseclose has argued that UCLA got around that ban during the years when he worked with the admissions committee by implementing a "€œholistic"€ evaluation system that let admissions officers consider race. (UCLA has denied the "€œholistic" review process was an end-around the racial preferences ban.)
One practice that'€™s generally legal: "€œLegacy"€ admissions, where children of alumni and wealthy donors — €”or of powerful lawmakers who have a say in public university funding — €”get special consideration in the application process. "€œIf it were up to me, I would make legacy admissions illegal in both public and private universities, especially if those schools took a dime of public funding,"€ says Groseclose.

8. We'€™d rather admit someone who can pay full price
According to the College Board, 10% of college freshmen in 2013 were foreign students. One reason colleges woo these international scholars: Many are wealthy enough to pay the full price of tuition.
At publicly funded state universities, higher tuition for out-of-state students often helps subsidize education for state residents. For example, for an undergraduate at the University of California at Berkeley, in-state tuition is about $13,000 a year; for an out-of-state or foreign student, tuition is about $36,000 a year.
"Many universities look to international students as a panacea to their financial ills,"€ says Robinson, the Denison admissions dean. "€œThey are admitting the out-of-state residents because they are a cash cow, a revenue stream for them," Robinson said. In some states, this has led to battles among legislators and alumni over whether the number of foreign and out-of-state students should be capped.
The foreign-student pipeline can also have pitfalls, says Perez of Pitzer. In some countries, some students pay big money to sometimes unscrupulous "€œagents"€ to help them gain entry to prestigious U.S. schools. "You can interview a student for a freshman class and find out the student who shows up in the fall is completely different, because they hired someone to do the interview for them," he said. "€œI didn'€™t get into admissions to become a police officer, but that'€™s what the job requires now."€

9. We need you more than you need us
After 15 years of steady growth, the number of U.S. high school graduates leveled off this year at 3.2 million; it'€™s expected to stay at that level until 2020 before starting to rise again, according to the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education.
That means more colleges will be chasing after fewer students. "€œThe public believes that it'€™s so hard to get into college, but the reality is that most colleges are scrambling to find applicants to fill out freshman classes,"€ says Syverson.
As a result, students who get into more than one school may be able to do some horse-trading on tuition, notes Matthew Pittinsky, the CEO of, an online college-admissions credentials-management website. "€œIt's just like going to the dealer and negotiating a better rate for your new car,"€ he says.

10. Just because you get admitted doesn'€™t mean you'€™ll stay admitted
About 22% of colleges revoked at least one offer of admission in 2009 (the most recent year studied), according to the NACAC. The most commonly cited reasons were senioritis-impacted final grades (65%), disciplinary issues (35%) and falsification of application information (29%).
But in recent years, student postings on social media have increasingly prompted colleges to take a second look at their some admission offers. Perez of Pitzer recalls an incident in which a student the college had decided to admit was found to be harassing a high-school teacher on Facebook. "€œIt was a difficult situation, but I pulled the admissions letter before it was printed," Perez says. "€œI got hateful tweets, but we are in an uber-selective environment. We just can'€™t take the chance."€

"The bottom line is that the schools are trying to protect themselves," Robinson said. "€œWhat they see electronically is not always what they see on paper."€

5 In Demand Tech Jobs

Sara White

5 In Demand Tech Jobs
Information technology jobs are growing as more companies rely on technology for daily business and find that they need employees to help manage, develop, and implement software, hardware, and web designs. Tech jobs range from working with or developing software, to designing websites, to ensuring a company's data remains secure, and much more. It's a field where workers are in demand and companies are eager to fill any number of tech jobs. Here are five in-demand tech jobs that are slated to grow at a faster rate than other industries.

Software Developer - $64,668
Software developers are in high demand as more companies rely on technology and proprietary software. Developers are the brains behind the design and creation of computer programs and are also responsible for creating the systems and networks to run devices as well as creating specific applications. It’s a job that requires you to understand the needs of users and then design a program to suit those needs. Most software developers will create diagrams and documentation that will allow programmers to write the code to make the program run. As a software developer, you will need oversee the creation of software and then test the software before implementing it to ensure it will run smoothly for the end user. Your job won’t end there, however, as you will need to ensure that programs continue to run smoothly and perform any maintenance on software down the line. As a software developer, you will need to work closely with people (especially programmers) throughout the entire process as your software vision comes to life.
In order to become a software developer you will need a bachelor’s degree in computer science, software engineering, or mathematics. During your education, you will want to focus on software development skills to build your resume. A master’s degree isn't necessary, but it will help you chances at getting a higher-level job and can open up more doors, and there are some jobs that might require an applicant with a master's degree. It’s also important to keep in mind what industry you want to work in, to ensure you have the appropriate skills to design software for that niche.
Software developer is a fast growing position, with the BLS predicting that it will grow 22 percent by 2022, which is much faster than most other industries. The BLS also states that application developer jobs are expected to grow 23 percent, while system developer jobs will grow by 20 percent. The average salary for a software developer is $65,668, according to PayScale, with a reported salary range of $43,141 to $101,384 per year. Check out openings on Monster to find software developer jobs in your area.

Business Analyst - $64,888
A business analyst is tasked with identifying possible risks with new projects and then communicating those to the appropriate people. They may also be responsible for managing and creating project plans to develop and test new technology. IT business analyst was rated #43 on a list of the top 100 careers in America, according to CNN. It received B ratings for flexibility and low stress, which indicates that for the most part, business analysts don’t experience high stress in their jobs and have some control over their schedule. Business analysts work to help companies improve their business models by recommending solutions to companies to help them better their structures, policies, and overall operations. According to the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA), the role of a business analyst is to act as "a liaison among stakeholders in order to understand the structure, policies, and operations of an organization, and to recommend solutions that enable the organizatio to achieve its goals."
To become a business analyst you will need at least a bachelor’s degree in computer science with some business courses or a degree in management information systems.  Since it is a job that combines both information technology and business, you will want to have a good grasp on both industries. Some high level business analyst jobs might require applicants to hold a masters in business administration with a concentration in information systems, but it depends on the job. As a business analyst, you will want to keep up with the latest in the tech industry so you are always on top of new software, procedures, and trends in the market.
This in demand position is growing at a rate faster than most industries, with the BLS predicting it will grow 25 percent by 2022. The average annual salary for a business analyst is $63,888, according to PayScale, with a reported salary range of $44,640 to $99,639 per year. Check out openings on Monster to find business analyst jobs in your area.

Database Administrator - $68,592
Database administrator is another in demand IT position that involves the installation, configuration, upgrading, and maintenance of databases for a company. DBAs are also responsible for ensuring the security of databases as well as developing and designing database strategies for a company. Duties will also include installing and upgrading the servers and tools for the database, ensuring all systems are compliant with vendor license agreements, optimizing database performance, backing up the database, archiving information, and more. You will need a strong knowledge of database theory, database design, structured query language (SQL), storage technologies, memory management, operating systems, and more. US News and World Report rated database administrator as number 12 on it’s list of Best Jobs in America for 2014.
To become a database administrator you will need at least a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information technology, or engineering. You may want to get your master’s degree to improve your job opportunities or certifications such as the IBM certification in Database Administration.
Database administrator jobs are predicted to grow 15 percent by 2022, according to the BLS, which is faster than most other industries. The average annual salary for a database administrator is $68,592, according to PayScale, with a reported salary range of $39,874 to $102,602 per year. Check out openings on Monster to find database administrator jobs in your area.

Information Security Analyst - $69,549
Security is a hot IT skill right now, especially considering the publicity that security breaches have been getting in the news. Companies want to ensure their data and customer data is safe, so they are hiring people, rather than employing software to get the job done. Having security skills can help you move up from a position to information technology to cyber security if you tailor your resume the right way. As an information security analyst, you will need to keep on top of all the latest in security, and always be one step ahead of hackers. You will be responsible for monitoring a business’ networks to spot security breaches and look into any suspicious activity. You will need to find the best software to protect the business’ data, ensure that the company has strong data encryption in place, keep people up to date on the status of security measures, and test the systems you implement. It’s a job that is rising as more companies rely on technology for their daily business. The more technology a company relies on, the more avenues that are opened up for security breaches. According to US News and World Report, information security analyst is the fourth best tech job in America for 2014.
To become an information security analyst you will need a bachelor’s degree in computer science or programming. You will also want to get a master’s degree in business information in information systems, since security jobs are generally high-level positions. Schools are starting to introduce security programs into their IT degrees to respond to the growing demand for security professionals. You can better your chances of getting a job in cyber security by getting experience in information technology and tailoring your resume to have skills in security.
Information security analyst jobs are predicted to grow 37 percent by 2022, according to the BLS, which makes it the fastest growing job on this list. The average annual salary for information security analysts is $68,549, according to PayScale, with a reported salary range of $45,275 to $103,207. Check out openings on Monster to find information security analyst jobs in your area.

Web Developer - $53,036
Web developer is a popular in-demand tech job that entails the development and creation of websites. As a web developer you will work closely with clients, or with your company, to develop and implement a website according to their vision. Responsibilities include debugging applications, creating applications, writing code, working with graphic designers to develop the layout, working with graphics, video, and audio, and monitoring traffic to the site. You will need a strong background in programming languages as well as HTML and XML. Web developer is ranked as number three on the list of best technology jobs by US News and World Report for 2014.
The education for a web developer relies on the job posting, with some jobs only requiring a high school degree, while others might want a bachelor’s degree. You can get an associate’s degree in web design and still have a number of jobs to apply to or you can freelance and take jobs as they come. To work for a company, or as a web architect, you will want at least a bachelor’s degree in computer science or programming.

The BLS predicts that web developer jobs will grow 20 percent by 2022, which is faster than most other industries. The average annual salary for a web developer is $53,036, according to PayScale, with a reported salary range of $32,116 to $82,193 per year. Check out openings on Monster to find web developer jobs in your area. 

America’s fastest growing jobs

After the recession wiped out millions of jobs, the American labor market has at least partially recovered. So far this year, the United States has added roughly 1.6 million jobs. And in the 10 years through 2022, the BLS estimates that employment will grow by over 15 million jobs, or by 11%.
Some jobs are expected to better capitalize on economic, demographic, and workplace trends than others. For example, industrial-organizational psychologists are expected to grow 53.4%, the fastest in the nation, and occupations in the health sector are also anticipated to disproportionately grow. Based on estimated employment figures and projections for 2012 and 2022 published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) for more than 1,000 occupations, 24/7 Wall St. identified the fastest growing jobs in America.

The jobs with the largest expected growth are often those that benefit from America’s changing demographics. In an interview with 24/7 Wall St., Martin Kohli, chief regional economist for the BLS, noted that the effects of an aging population, which has access to Medicare, “combined with innovations that provide new treatments” has led to increases in health care spending. In turn, more spending creates “a high demand for jobs to provide these services,” he added.
In fact, the average of all health support occupations is expected to grow 28% by 2022. Six jobs within the top 10 are in the health care sector.
Some of the fastest growing jobs are expected to receive a boost from economic trends. For example, the BLS expects that a continued economic rebound will lead to greater demand for construction and renovations. While construction laborers and helpers are expected to grow 25%, jobs such as masons' helpers are expected to grow at a considerably higher rate of 45%.

Government and private sector initiatives are also expected to contribute to growth in specific occupations. New federal health care legislation is expected to increase access to health care and, in turn, to the scale of the health care industry. Meanwhile, mechanical insulators are expected to benefit from an increased focus on environmental sustainability.
Most of the occupations with the highest estimated growth rates are not especially large. Only two occupations, home health aides and personal care aides, are estimated to be among the larger jobs by number of people employed in 2022.

There does not appear to be wage or educational trends among the jobs with the largest growth rates. These occupations all have various levels of median wage as well as differing educational requirements.
To determine the jobs with the highest forecast rate of employment growth, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed BLS Employment Projections program data for 2012 and 2022. In order to qualify, occupations needed to reference a specific job rather than a broader classification. Figures from the BLS for 2012 represent estimates, while figures for 2022 represent forecasts and may be revised. Further information on each occupation came from the BLS’ Occupational Outlook Handbook.

These are the fastest growing jobs in America.
10. Physical Therapist Assistants
> Pct. change in employment 2012 - 2022: 41.0%
> Number employed, 2012: 71,400
> Number employed, 2022: 100,700
> Median annual income: $52,160
> Educational qualification: Associate’s degree

Physical therapist assistants work for physical therapists to facilitate patient treatment. The profession is expected to be among the fastest growing occupations in America. Typically, their job includes observing, stretching, monitoring, and educating the patients. According to the BLS, demand for physical therapy in general is expected to rise due to the greater needs of America’s aging population. Aging baby boomers may require more rehabilitation services as they grow old. Additionally, health conditions that are increasingly affecting the population, such as obesity and diabetes, are expected to require greater rehabilitation services.

9. Genetic Counselors
> Pct. change in employment 2012 - 2022: 41.2%
> Number employed, 2012: 2,100
> Number employed, 2022: 3,000
> Median annual income: $56,800
> Educational qualification: Master’s degree

The BLS estimates a 41.2% growth in the number of genetic counselors between 2012 and 2022, more than double the rate of other health care practitioners. This growth is largely due to technological advancements in lab testing and genomics. Such development will allow genetic counselors to more accurately assess “individual or family risks for a variety of inherited conditions, such as genetic disorders or birth defects,” the BLS noted. And yet, the field will remain relatively small. With only 2,100 people working as genetic counselors as of 2012, the extremely fast growth will result in just 900 new jobs.

8. Occupational Therapy Assistants
> Pct. change in employment 2012 - 2022: 42.6%
> Number employed, 2012: 30,300
> Number employed, 2022: 43,200
> Median annual income: $53,240
> Educational qualification: Associate’s degree

Like other medical related occupations, the demand for occupational therapy assistants is expected to rise the population ages. As baby boomers become more prone to stroke or arthritis, they will require treatment from an increased number of occupational therapy assistants. Therapy assistants help their patients recover and maintain the skills needed for daily living. Additionally, occupational therapists assistants will be required to meet continued demand for the care of children and adults with disabilities. The BLS expects the growing demand will result in a nearly 43% job growth, well above the national job growth rate of 10.8%.

7. Masons’ Helpers
> Pct. change in employment 2012 - 2022: 43.0%
> Number employed, 2012: 24,400
> Number employed, 2022: 34,900
> Median annual income: $28,220
> Educational qualification: Less than high school

Mason's helpers provide assistance to lead masons, who make plans, read blueprints, and lay out foundation patterns. As of 2012, there were only 24,400 people working as masons’ helpers. However, the BLS forecasts that a post-recession rebound in construction will result in a large increase in new schools, hospitals, apartment buildings, and other buildings. This new construction will require a large number of workers with training in building fences, walkways, and walls. The BLS estimates that the need for onsite mason helpers should grow by 43% between 2012 and 2022, almost twice the growth rate of construction sector employment as a whole. Despite the expected construction boom, the construction sector, including mason’s helpers, is highly dependent on cyclical factors.

6. Diagnostic Medical Sonographers
> Pct. change in employment 2012 - 2022: 46.0%
> Number employed, 2012: 58,800
> Number employed, 2022: 85,900
> Median annual income: $65,860
> Educational qualification: Associate’s degree

Diagnostic medical sonographers provide medical imaging of the human body’s organs and tissues. Like other health occupations, demand for diagnostic medical sonographers is expected to grow rapidly. As a large segment of the population ages and the health care industry grows, the need for diagnostic services will expand. Developments in medical imaging technology will make procedures less expensive and invasive, resulting in increased demand. The employment of medical sonographers is anticipated to grow by about 27,000, or 46%.

5. Interpreters and Translators
> Pct. change in employment 2012 - 2022: 46.1%
> Number employed, 2012: 63,600
> Number employed, 2022: 92,900
> Median annual income: $45,430
> Educational qualification: Bachelor’s degree

The BLS pointed to increased globalization and greater diversity within the United States as the primary driver of growth for the profession. Although computers have greatly increased the efficiency and productivity of interpreters and translators, technology cannot provide the specific nuances of human translation. Demand will likely remain strong for frequently translated languages, but most growth will likely be due to greater need for translators in American Sign Language and emerging market languages. According to the BLS, “growing international trade and broadening global ties” will create new jobs for interpreters and translators.

4. Mechanical Insulation Workers
> Pct. change in employment 2012 - 2022: 46.7%
> Number employed, 2012: 28,900
> Number employed, 2022: 42,400
> Median annual income: $39,170
> Educational qualification: High school diploma

While the BLS forecasts above average growth in construction employment, the estimated growth rate of mechanical insulation workers is projected to be more-than twice that, at 47%. Unlike other types of insulators, mechanical insulation workers require greater specialty given the challenges of applying insulation to pipes and ducts in all types of buildings. Increased emphasis on energy efficiency will result in growing demand for mechanical insulation workers instead of non-mechanical insulation workers.

3. Home Health Aides
> Pct. change in employment 2012 - 2022: 48.5%
> Number employed, 2012: 875,100
> Number employed, 2022: 1,299,300
> Median annual income: $20,820
> Educational qualification: Less than high school

An aging population will likely result in a greater need for home health aides, who provide individualized daily client care. The number of such aides is expected to grow by over 48% in the 10 years from 2012 and become one of the most commonly-held jobs by 2022. Home health aides typically work for a medical institution and keep a record of services performed and the client’s conditions, in addition to providing home care and companionship. For elderly clients, home health care is increasingly popular because it offers a “less expensive alternative to nursing homes or hospitals,” the BLS notes.

2. Personal Care Aides
> Pct. change in employment 2012 - 2022: 48.8%
> Number employed, 2012: 1,190,600
> Number employed, 2022: 1,771,400
> Median annual income: $19,190
> Educational qualification: Less than high school

Similar to home health aides, personal care aides provide individualized home health services to elderly clients living at home. However, personal care aids are restricted to providing only basic medical services and will often work in conjunction with nurses or social workers. The BLS expects that over 580,000 jobs for personal care aides will be created in the decade through 2022, the most out of any of America’s fastest growing jobs. Yet, the median annual wage for personal care aids was just $19,910 as of 2012, well below the nationwide median of $34,750 for all occupations.

1. Industrial-Organizational Psychologists
> Pct. change in employment 2012 - 2022: 53.4%
> Number employed, 2012: 1,600
> Number employed, 2022: 2,500
> Median annual income: $83,580
> Educational qualification: Master’s degree

Industrial organizational psychologists are anticipated to be the fastest growing job in the U.S. in the 10 years through 2022. The BLS estimates that in the 10-year period through 2022, employment of industrial-organizational psychologists will rise more than 53%, dramatically higher than the growth rates for all jobs and for other psychologist professions. The use of psychology is expected to increase across the nation as individuals and institutions look for help in solving or managing problems. Industrial-organizational psychologists address issues relating to workplace productivity, organizational developments, and employee screening. Becoming an industrial-organizational psychologist typically requires a master’s degree, as well as an internship or residency. Despite the forecast growth rate, the actual number of jobs expected to be added is very small -- just 900 by 2022.

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