Health care professions offer some of the best opportunities for college graduates today. Health care careers include interesting work with a variety of people and conditions, flexible hours, and great pay. People who work in health care professions tend to stay in those professions long term, as the opportunities for growth and advancement are numerous. Here are just a few of the fastest growing health care professions available to college graduates:
Nursing is the most visible of all the health care professions, and health care facilities would not function without nurses. Besides hospitals, nursing homes, and doctors’ offices, nurses also work in home health care, occupational health settings, and public schools. Nurses may also work as case managers or as insurance company reviewers. Jobs in nursing are plentiful and the US Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) predicts the nursing professions will grow 26% between 2010 and 2020.
Physical therapists help people regain mobility and strength after an illness or injury. They work with people of all ages in hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation facilities, outpatient clinics, sports medicine centers, industrial rehabilitation settings, and public schools. Physical therapists get to utilize cutting edge medical technology to assist their patients in recovery. A doctoral degree or post-baccalaureate degrees are now required to become a physical therapist, but the effort may be worth it as the median salary for physical therapists was $78,270 in 2011.
Occupational therapy differs from physical therapy in that occupational therapists use daily activities in rehabilitation. Occupational therapists help people regain or acquire their ability to feed, dress and bathe themselves, work at a job, or complete school work, drive a car, do housework, and just about any other daily activity. Occupational therapists work in hospitals, nursing homes, outpatient clinics, home health agencies, public schools, industrial rehabilitation, and many other settings. The field of occupational therapy is expected to grow by 33.5% between 2010 and 2020 according to BLS.
Degrees in all three of these fields are available through Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions. Students who enter these professions may obtain degrees in nursing to become nurse practitioners, entry level doctor of physical therapy degrees, and post-professional doctor of occupational therapy degrees. Many specializations within these fields are also offered and courses utilize information technology to assist students with balancing school, work and home life, giving college graduates many opportunities to advance their careers in health care fields.