By The Biz Team (Siam)
At its peak, the COVID pandemic resulted in 40 million job losses in the USA alone causing thousands of businesses to close permanently. Now that the country is slowly returning to normality, close to 40% of people still have no job to return to. A few things became apparent during the COVID pandemic; some jobs are essential irrespective of the national crisis. For law enforcement officers, healthcare workers, IT professionals, computer engineers, and online consultants, COVID was a godsend. Not only did these professionals still retain their jobs, but they made a lot more money working overtime. So for those of you considering a career post pandemic, here are some professions to think about.
Teacher: Since all the schools, colleges, and universities were closed because of the COVID pandemic, there was an increased demand for teachers. Many of the teachers taught online using a variety of tools. There was and is a demand for teachers at all levels of education. Typically, it takes 4-5 years to become a teacher at grade school or college level. The process of becoming a teacher is not difficult at all and once you get your certificate, you can teach almost anywhere. The salary for a teacher at a junior level starts at about $20 per hour and can reach as high as $40 per hour. Plus, teachers get the entire summer off, all public holidays off, and a paid vacation on top of that. Most schools also offer comprehensive health benefits.
Psychologist: The COVID pandemic caused a lot of stress within the public. Many people became very fearful and were worried about contracting the virus. Others developed stress because of losing their job and having no income and others simply hated being holed up in their home for months, which led to a surge in visits to psychotherapists and mental health counselors. The rush in therapy business was so great that the public could not get an appointment for 3-4 weeks. Becoming a psychologist is a great profession because times of crisis, mental breakdowns and stress are very common. A psychology degree requires 4 years of college plus a year of internship. However, to be a psychologist does require hard work and a lot of studying, but the benefits are enormous. There are jobs for psychologists in many professions outside the hospital. Pay starts at $60K and can rise as high as $200K for those who are excellent at counseling patients.
Laboratory Tech: This is another resilient career because a hospital cannot function without a laboratory. To be a lab technician takes 2- 4 years and jobs are plentiful either in private or in hospitals. Plus, there are many sub-specialties in the laboratory where one can work. Also, the course work is not too demanding. Starting pay varies from $20-$25 an hour and during the COVID pandemic, many lab techs got hundreds of hours in overtime because thousands of people flooded the hospitals asking to be tested. The Department of Labor and Bureau indicates that there is going to be a great need for lab technologists over the next 5 years.
Nurse: All over the country, there is a great demand for nurses to look after COVID patients and the overtime is plentiful. To be a nurse requires a bachelor's degree which takes 4 years. The nursing profession has many sub-specialties and one can even obtain a Ph.D. or become an advanced practice nurse. Starting pay for a nurse starts at around $30 and many hospitals offer sign-on bonuses and loan forgiveness. The profession has some of the best benefits and advancement is common. Some experienced nurses make close to $100K-$130K. However, to become a nurse does require a lot of studying and passing the national exam.
Physician Assistants (PA): Like nurses, there was an enormous demand for physician assistants to look after sick patients. To be a PA, one needs to complete a 4-year program, pass the national exam, and be licensed. There are many fields in medicine where PAs can work, but unlike doctors, they have to work under a physician. To become a PA is not easy as it requires a lot of studying and passing the exams, but the rewards are immense. The starting salary for PAs in the US is anywhere from $100K-$120K and if hired by a hospital, they get numerous benefits.
IT and computing: The COVID pandemic required everyone to be at home full time and most people turned to their PCs, either to watch videos, read or teach. The pandemic made everyone realize how important computing technology is for us today. With a few keystrokes, one can access any type of information, talk to people across geographic borders and use the platform to teach. Thus, the demand for computer specialists and IT is immense. To be a computer specialist requires a 4-year college degree and then there are plenty of opportunities to diversify. It is a little difficult to obtain a computer specialty because one has to have a good background in chemistry, physics, and mathematics. The pay for computer scientists and engineers starts at $70K and many end up earning 2-3 times that much. The demand for computer scientist software engineers and IT professions is always going to be high. There is hardly a profession that does not use computers today.
Social workers: This profession has been in great demand during the COVID pandemic. Issues like domestic violence, child abuse and drug addiction peaked during the pandemic. Also, many people lost their jobs and had no money for food or rent. These kinds of problems are best dealt by social workers. To be a social worker requires a 4-year degree and many go on to obtain an advanced degree like MSC or Ph.D. There are many opportunities for social workers, but to become one requires hard work and dedication. Salaries for social workers start at $65K, but experienced workers make twice that much.
Law enforcement: During the COVID pandemic, people were stuck in their homes, and tempers often frayed. Also, with a lot of people out of work, there was a surge in crime, breaks-ins of empty businesses, and violence. Police were required to enforce the rules of social distancing, government buildings needed to be guarded and emergencies required prompt attention. The majority of police were granted hundreds of hours of overtime every month. It truly is a great profession that comes with respect and prestige. To be a police officer, one needs to graduate from high school. Then the candidate will spend at least 18 months at the police academy and learn the basics of police work. The advanced police school course lasts two years. The starting salary of a police officer is $50/hr and it comes with perhaps the best benefits among all professions. There is ample room for advancement and detectives easily make 6-figure incomes. The process of becoming a police officer is not difficult, but one must learn to obey and follow rules.
These listed professions proved durable during the pandemic and are worth pursuing because of ample opportunities, good pay, prestige,and above all else, job stability.