Top 5 Health Care Careers That Make a Difference
Looking for a career that will help make the world a better place? Try one of these health care jobs.
It's a New World for Health Care Workers
Most of us have had our share of jobs that feel like fun—maybe you spent a summer scooping ice cream, dog-walking or working at a radio station. Every job matters. But how often do we get to work in jobs that impact us emotionally, and serve other people beyond fulfilling their basic needs? How often do we work in jobs that we feel can change the world?
From PayScale’s 2012-2013 College Salary Report, the data-crunchers compiled a list of the Top 10 Majors That Change the World. Respondents were full-time employees who completed bachelor degrees. That’s why you won’t see any mention of fields like medicine, chemistry or nanotechnology on this list. But these fields of study are likely to lead you to meaningful work—with far fewer years spent in the classroom.
Of the Top 10 reported majors, five are in the health care field. Let’s take a look:
It’s no surprise that out of 131 careers reported in the survey, nursing has the highest ranking of employees who self-report a meaningful work environment. View the most important duties of Certified Nursing Assistants. Nurses provide essential support during every step of a patient’s experience in health care. By serving so many, nurses are forerunners in changing the world, one patient at a time. Read our tips on pursuing your health care education in today’s economy.
2. Medical Technology
Medical technologists perform technical and scientific functions in lab settings—such as testing for disease and helping to control and minimize infections. The results technicians find ensure that doctors make a correct diagnosis. Their contributions to the field of medicine are critical.
Many entry-level positions require an associate’s degree and training, allowing you to begin work fairly quickly as a medical lab tech, pharmacy tech, radiologic tech, surgical tech and veterinary tech.
3. Biomedical Engineering (BME)
One popular position in biomedical engineering, or BME, is ultrasound technician. Also called diagnostic sonographers, they use sound waves to provide medical images. Their accuracy and attention to detail helps find life-threatening diseases early and gives patients peace of mind in stressful times.
Dietitians are experts in nutrition science. They help people with menu planning, food preparation and diet therapy, while also participating in research, counseling and education. As unhealthy weight gain grows as a concern in the United States, our society is finding many ways to take action—from changing eating habits at the grade-school level to listing calorie counts on restaurant menus. The work dietitians do with individuals puts the power of living well into each person’s hands. Learn more about becoming a dietitian or nutritionist.
5. Public Health
Finally, and not surprisingly, those working in the field of public health report finding a high value of meaning in their daily work. They do almost everything! From tracking the causes of disease as an epidemiologist to teaching prevention as a health educator, the field caters to a variety of skill sets. Public health opportunities are waiting for you.