4 Careers That Allow You to Work with Children and Make a Difference
Many career paths can leave you feeling satisfied and fulfilled but few can compare to those jobs that allow you to work with kids and have a positive impact on their life. Knowing that you are helping them in some way – big or small – is incredibly rewarding and something you can hang on to every day. Kids are the future and choosing a career where you’ll be working with them means you’ll have a direct impact on the future and the direction it takes.
If you like the idea of choosing a career path that allows you to work with kids and have a real impact, then these could be some great options for you.
Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
In this job, you’ll be able to help in two ways: you’ll be providing patients with much-needed care and support and you will be working with kids. As a pediatric nurse practitioner, the focus is on primary and acute care in children. You’ll be seeing patients who have critical, complex, acute and chronic illnesses, so there is a lot of variety in the job. This also means you need to be well-prepared with the proper training and education.
The PNP DNP program through Baylor University is one option you may want to look into, as this is a Doctor of Nursing Practice with a pediatric nurse practitioner track. Should you choose to work as a pediatric nurse practitioner, you will need to have practiced as a professional nurse for at least one year. It’s a great option for nurses who want to advance their careers and take them to the next level, choosing a specialty or track to focus on.
In general terms, nurse practitioners are in very high demand across the entire country. The field is expected to grow by 45% by 2030, which is way faster than the average job growth. There are a couple of factors playing into the huge demand including an aging workforce that is retiring thereby opening up jobs, and a shortage of family physicians which leads to a reliance on nurse practitioners. As a nurse practitioner, you’ll also command a higher salary than an RN.
Here’s another interesting career that resides in the healthcare industry. As a speech-language pathologist, you can choose to work with kids to assess, diagnose and, of course, treat a variety of speech and communication challenges, issues and disorders. What may come as a surprise is that speech-language pathologists also help those with swallowing disorders.
Part of what makes this job so rewarding is knowing you are helping kids to become better, more efficient communicators. These are tools they can use the rest of their lives, helping them to be happier and more successful.
In terms of the future for speech-language pathologists, there are a lot of positive signs. The field is expected to grow by 29% by 2030, which is way above the national job growth average. This is country-wide too, so you will have plenty of options. The average salary is $80,480 with some states and cities/towns having above-average salary opportunities. It’s a lesser talked about option in the healthcare industry, but one that can be just as rewarding as the better-known jobs.
Child Social Worker
Here’s a job that allows you to have a huge impact on a child’s life. As a child social worker, it’s your job to look out for the well-being of the child. The general description for a social worker is to help people to cope and solve various issues in their lives. Within the field are also clinical social workers, who require more schooling and training. In this job, you will not only help kids to cope and solve issues, but you can also diagnose and treat emotional, mental and behavioral problems.
Some of the places that you can work as a child social worker include:
- Mental health clinics
- Child welfare agencies
- Private practice
- Settlement houses
This is another field experiencing growth that is above the national average, although not as high as the previously mentioned career paths. The most common reason for the growth in job opportunities is the increased rate of retirement in the field, as the current child social workers age and start to leave the workforce.
You can’t make a list of careers that work with children without mentioning a teacher. This is the ultimate career path for someone who wants to have a positive impact on a child’s life. Chances are you have a few favorite teachers you can remember over the years; those that stood out to you, that helped you to find your way and be more confident and those who helped you in immeasurable ways. Imagine having that same effect on your potential students?
You have the option of working as a high school, elementary or kindergarten teacher. Perhaps you’ll start with one grade and change later on in your career. No matter what age/grade you choose, all positions are experiencing job growth right now, which means there are plenty of opportunities.
Besides being able to work with kids and have a positive impact on their life, you will also look forward to summers off. This is a huge incentive for many people. You also don’t have to worry about overtime hours and weekend work.
Not sure if you’d make a good teacher? There are some personality traits teachers tend to possess, and this can help you to figure out if it would be a good fit for you. For example:
- They can build a community in the classroom
- They have excellent communication skills
- They can show empathy and understanding
- They have a strong work ethic
- They can multitask
- They work well under pressure and stress
- They can stay focused
- They have a friendly demeanor
- They are energetic and positive
- They have a good work ethic
- They are good listeners
If you’re set on choosing a career that lets you work with kids, any of these options may be the perfect match.
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