You’ve finished your final exams, walked across the stage, and are holding that shiny diploma for which you’ve worked so hard. Now what? I mean, after the Instagram and Snap stories.
Taking those first steps into the job market can be scary — but it can also be exciting. If you’re one of the few who know what you want to do when you started college and have earned a degree in that field, congratulations! If not, don’t worry. As few as 27 percent of college graduates work in their field of study after graduation, so if you’re still deciding on a direction or wondering “What’s next?,” you’re not alone.
And, while we hear a lot about STEM and the world’s growing need for graduates knowledgeable in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, one of the most promising career fields is focused on helping people. Almost everyone needs help planning for retirement savings, debt repayments and tax planning and specialized financial knowledge isn’t a pre-requisite.
Whatever your situation, don’t limit yourself to just the jobs you already know about. A helpful strategy is to identify fast-growing jobs in expanding fields with good pay and long-term growth prospects that can offer financial stability and promise for years to come. Here are a few promising careers you may not have heard about that are worth investigating:
1. Solar Photovoltaic Installer
So maybe it’s not easy to say, but as rooftop solar arrays have become increasingly affordable and effective, their popularity has grown among consumers with a wide range of backgrounds and in a wide number of economic brackets. Solar has been volatile over the past decade, but it looks to have longevity, in addition to its current rapid growth. A college degree isn’t needed for this field, but having one won’t exclude you — as long as you’re not afraid of heights and enjoy working outdoors Perhaps the best part? Most solar energy companies provide robust training for employees.
- Median wage: $39,490 a year
- Job growth: 105% a year
- Entry-level education requirement: high school diploma
2. Genetic Counselor
Ever done a 23andMe test with your family to find your “hometown” vacation destination? Genetic testing to assess risk and match family members has been around in commercial form for less than 20 years, but the technology has advanced to make the tests more reliable and available than ever. The ease of use is spurring widespread adoption, allowing people to find long-lost family members and find out more about what conditions they might be susceptible to long before symptoms appear. For those with a master’s degree in genetics, genetic counseling is a great new career choice. Counselors can help interpret genetic information, specifically as it relates to inherited diseases and conditions, and be advocates for people at risk. If you’re interested in this career path, consider applying to graduate schools after obtaining your bachelor’s.
- Median wage: $77,480 a year
- Job growth: 29% a year
- Entry-level education requirement: master’s degree in genetics
3. Information Security Analyst
Looking for a way to make that video gaming pay off? With technology touching every part of life, personal information is more at risk than ever. And with headlines featuring constant reports of data breaches, that’s a concern that has long passed the line between theory and reality. In order to stop the bad actors from finding and exploiting weaknesses in cybersecurity, good people are needed to find—and fix—them first. That’s where information security analysts come in. While many information security analysts have bachelor’s degrees in computer science or engineering, others have degrees in more broad topics, such as business administration, information science or other topics.
- Median wage: $95,150 a year
- Job growth: 28% a year
- Entry-level education requirement: bachelor’s degree
4. Financial Advisor
No, it’s not Wolf of Wall Street. Almost a quarter of Americans have no retirement savings, and most of those who have saved are underfunded, experts warn, making financial planning more important than ever. Financial advisors often enjoy flexible hours, and can work in a large firm or for themselves, and are compensated well. They can help both clients and their family and friends find financial stability at their current stage of life and set them up to succeed financially for years to come. No day is the same, which keeps the job interesting – people’s personal situations, market fluctuations, changes in tariffs and tax policy, and geopolitical climate all affect financial planning. The field is growing fast, and there is immediate demand for advisors of all backgrounds to work with a diverse client base.
- Median wage: $90,640 a year
- Job growth: 15% a year
- Entry-level education requirement: bachelor’s degree
There are many other jobs that aren’t obvious during the career-choosing process, but that are rewarding.
When you’re ready to start applying and interviewing, take a minute to update your LinkedIn profile and make sure your other social media accounts shine a positive light on you. If you’re still using your school email address, create a professional email address. Make sure your voicemail is set up and update your resume with relevant experience, including skills you may have gained in college or in other jobs or internships that carry over across industry lines.
If you’re still not sure what a job or industry is like — or if it’s right for you — try asking someone working in it. Network to find people who are in or connected to the fields you’re curious about, or contact them over social media. Don’t feel shy about asking someone to answer questions over email, phone, Skype or even a quick meeting for coffee. Very few people will say “no” to taking 15 minutes or a half hour to help someone interested in learning more about what they do. Even if you decide that the field isn’t what you’re looking for, you can make a new contact that will help you find your way to a role that works for you.
This article was written by Kate Healy and originally appeared on Fairygodboss.
Interested in refinancing student loans?Here are the top 6 lenders of 2019!
|Lender||Variable APR||Eligible Degrees|
|Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
1 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
2 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.
Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.50% APR (with Auto Pay) to 7.89% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 2.49% APR (with Auto Pay) to 7.27% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of April 17, 2019, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.
Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.
The information provided on this page is updated as of 04/17/2019. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at email@example.com, or call 888-601-2801 for more information on our student loan refinance product.
© 2018 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved. Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries, including Earnest Operations LLC, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.
3 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
However, if the borrower chooses to make monthly payments automatically by electronic funds transfer (EFT) from a bank account, the fixed rate will decrease by 0.25%, and will increase back up to the regular fixed interest rate described in the preceding paragraph if the borrower stops making (or we stop accepting) monthly payments automatically by EFT from the designated borrower’s bank account.
However, if the borrower chooses to make monthly payments automatically by electronic funds transfer (EFT) from a bank account, the variable rate will decrease by 0.25%, and will increase back up to the regular variable interest rate described in the preceding paragraph if the borrower stops making (or we stop accepting) monthly payments automatically by EFT from the designated borrower’s bank account.
All credit products are subject to credit approval.
Laurel Road began originating student loans in 2013 and has since helped thousands of professionals with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees consolidate and refinance more than $4 billion in federal and private school loans. Laurel Road also offers a suite of online graduate school loan products and personal loans that help simplify lending through customized technology and personalized service. In April 2019, Laurel Road was acquired by KeyBank, one of the nation’s largest bank-based financial services companies. Laurel Road is a brand of KeyBank National Association offering online lending products in all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. All loans are provided by KeyBank National Association, a nationally chartered bank. Member FDIC. For more information, visit www.laurelroad.com.
4 Important Disclosures for LendKey.
Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it endorse, any educational institution.
5 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
Offered terms are subject to change. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900). If you are approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your credit profile, your application, the loan term selected and will be within the ranges of rates shown. All Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) displayed assume borrowers enroll in auto pay and account for the 0.25% reduction in interest rate. All variable rates are based on a 1-month LIBOR assumption of 2.48% effective April 10, 2019.
6 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.
Citizens Bank Disclosures
|2.49% – 7.27%1||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.49% – 6.65%3||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.49% – 7.41%4||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.50% – 6.65%2||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.49% – 7.11%5||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.98% – 9.72%6||Undergrad & Graduate|