Step 1, Find a 21st century career field – a growing field

You can do anything, and be anything if someone helps you!

As we discuss in the workbook, Plan for Your Success: What century do you live in?: (Plan for Your Success workbook) If you do not have plan, then it is nearly impossible to succeed in the new economy. As the following USA Today article by James Beriker clearly explains, there is one thing that every high school student, college student, and every adult needs…A plan: 10 Things I wish I knew….However, a plan is irrelevant if you are not planning to find a job in a 21st century career field as explained in the following video created by Brian Y. Marsh, Success in the New Economy.

What is a 21st century career field? One that is GROWING! As the Success in the New Economy video points out, many 21st century college graduates are OVER EDUCATED and have jobs that do not require a bachelor’s degree, or work in fields unrelated to their college degrees. Why? Because, the majority of modern career fields only require an Associates Degree, or an Industry Driven Credential such as a certificate, not a bachelor’s degree.

First, be honest with yourself.  if you are NOT the type of person who likes school, or do not have time for years of school, then you should consider a career in a field that only requires a certificate. What is a certificate? It is an educational program that usually only takes one year or less. Look here to see if Ivy Tech has a 21st century certificate that can help you launch your career: Tech Certificates for jobs.

ASSOCIATES DEGREE or Bachelors, which fits your personality?

Second, if you are the type of person who only wants to be in school for 2-3 years, then follow the steps in the workbook, and find careers for people who are very successful with Associates Degrees. Use these two websites: Career One, and the Occupational Outlook Handbook: Occupational Outlook Handbook.  Both of these sites contain search tools where you can search for growing career fields. Search for career fields for people who only want an Associates degree, or search or careers that require Bachelors degrees, it is your choice.

WHEN DO YOU NEED a Bachelors degree?

Lastly, you only need a bachelors degree if the career field that you want requires one. Otherwise you can be extremely successful with a certificate, or an Associate’s degree. How do you know which one you need? Repeat the process, check Career One Stop, and the Occupational Outlook Handbook, and search for growing career fields; they will tell you what type of degree you need.

For example, let’s take a look at HEALTHCARE careers:

If you are interested in healthcare, look here: (10 High Paying Health Care Jobs). Note that many of these career fields require 4 year degrees. However, NOT ALL OF THEM require bachelors degrees. You can make just as much money with an Associate’s degree, without all of the student loan debt… if you choose the correct career field.

Do elite schools such as Ivy League colleges recommend this strategy of researching a career before choosing a major? Absolutely. Here is a video published by the Harvard Extension School, in September of 2012 which recommends finding a career first just like TAPS: Harvard: 5 Strategies for Academic Success. If the best colleges in the world recommend this strategy, you cannot go wrong.

Complete p. 28 in the Plan for Your Success workbook, then proceed to Step 1A if you are thinking of opening your own business: Become an Entrepreneur, be your own boss!

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