With high unemployment rates in the United States, many people are either out of work, underemployed, or hoping to move out of a dead-end job. Analysts say that many jobs that have disappeared – particularly those in manufacturing – won’t be coming back. But amid the gloom there are rays of light. At the start of the new decade some job categories are growing and providing opportunities for people who have the right training.
The recession has hit hard. According to the U.S. Government Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor, in December 2007, when the global recession began, the number of unemployed persons in the U.S. was 7.7 million and the national unemployment rate was 5.0 percent. By the end of 2009, the number of unemployed persons had almost doubled to 15.3 million, and the national unemployment rate was at 10.0 percent. In some states and cities the numbers were better, but in other areas, including former manufacturing centers such as Detroit, Michigan, the numbers were worse. And many analysts believe that the unemployment figures are low because they often don’t count people who have simply given up looking for work.
Grim? For many, yes. However, there are bright spots even in this dismal economy. Some job sectors have very good outlooks, and for people who have the right training there are plenty of good opportunities. The careers aren’t evenly distributed across industries and occupational groups, and changes in consumer demand, technology, and global economics will continue to affect the job outlook.
Based on projections from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, here are our Top Ten Growth Career choices for the coming decade.
1. Registered Nurse
A leader in the overall expansion of health care careers. Job growth will be driven by several factors including the increase in the number of older people, who need more nursing care than younger people. Technological advances in patient care and an increasing emphasis on preventive care will also contribute to increased opportunities for registered nurses.
2. Home Health Aid
The anticipated growth is due to the increase in percentage and numbers of elderly people. Seniors more often have health problems and may require assistance with daily activities. As costs of institutional care continue to rise, increasing number of seniors will be living at home and will require assistance.
3. Customer Service Representative
Over the next decade, the government expects this sizable occupation sector to create about 400,000 new jobs. As we move into a service-based economy, companies are placing increasing emphasis on creating lasting customer relationships.
4. Food and Beverage Preparation and Serving
As the population continues to expand, the job segment of food and beverage serving and related workers is expected to create about 761,000 new jobs over the period 2008-2018.
5. Personal and Home Care Aide
As part of the overall growth of healthcare careers, healthcare workers at all levels of training and education will continue to be in demand. Specialized training, such as a certificate, associate degree, or bachelor’s degree in a healthcare program, is a requirement for many jobs, including many administrative jobs that do not specifically include hands-on medical responsibilities.
6. Retail Salespersons
While very little training is needed to get a job as a retail clerk (many students get their first paying summer jobs behind the counter at a retail store), post-secondary school education is often a required for advancement into management positions.
In this growing job sector, the best opportunities will go to people who have a college degree or career training in office systems. As offices become increasingly computer-dependent, post-secondary training or retraining will be increasingly important.
7. Office Clerks (Administrative Assistants)
8. Accountants and Auditors
According to the U.S. Government, in the decade between 2008 and 2018 employment of accountants and auditors is expected to add about 279,400 of new jobs. An increase in the number of new small businesses, increased accountability requirements, and changing financial laws and corporate governance regulations will spur job growth.
9. Nursing Aides, Orderlies, Attendants
Employment is predicted to grow 19 percent, which is faster than the average for all occupations. Why? The increase in jobs is the result of an increasing elderly population with long-term care needs. Growth is expected to be especially strong in community care facilities for the elderly. Advanced medical technology provides for longer lives, but with an increased level of care required.
10. Post-secondary Teachers
Increases in college and university enrollment over the next decade will spur employment growth. Enrollment increases will come from 18- to 24-year-olds and adults who return to college to update their skills or enhance their career prospects.
You can learn more at the website of the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, at http://www.bls.gov/oco/oco2003.htm. Your best bet? To move your career ahead, get the career training you need to succeed. Check out the career schools at a reputable online school directory. Compare schools and programs. Choose on-campus or online degree programs. In less time than you think, you could be prepared for a rewarding career.