Which Healthcare Career Is Right For Me?
If you are exploring healthcare careers and trying to decide which one is right for you, it is important for you to research your options thoroughly. There are many questions you should ask yourself to determine which careers would be a good fit for your skills and interests. How you answer these questions can help direct you into certain healthcare fields. Some of these questions include:
Is the healthcare environment right for me?
Healthcare is a rapidly-changing, technology-driven, fast-paced environment. It can be fascinating, rewarding and stressful. Healthcare professionals must be willing to work hard and be lifelong learners. Volunteering in a hospital is an excellent way to find out if the healthcare setting is right for you. Contact the volunteer services office of any hospital to learn about volunteer opportunities.
Shadowing professionals in the careers that interest you is also an excellent way to find out more about healthcare careers.
The College's Career Centers can help you determine if the healthcare environment and certain healthcare careers are a good fit for you. An excellent career assessment and planning tool available through the Career Centers is MyPlan.
Do I know what healthcare careers exist?
There are well over 30 different healthcare professionals, all of which provide critical services to patients and/or healthcare organizations. Comprehensive descriptions of healthcare careers can be found at www.explorehealthcareers.org
Do I want to provide direct patient care?
Some healthcare professions such as radiography, nursing, respiratory care, occupational therapy, physical therapy and many others are direct patient care professions. Others such as medical laboratory technology and health information technology do not require the same level of direct patient care. Even if direct patient care doesn't interest you, there may still be healthcare careers that are a good fit for you.
Can I commit to the necessary educational requirements?
Training for a healthcare career can take from a few months to eight or more years depending on the profession. It is important to research a number of healthcare careers and consider your circumstances carefully before making a decision.