Career Profile – Fashion Designer

fashion designerFashion designers help create dresses, suits, shoes, and other clothing and accessories.

Designers study fashion trends, sketch designs of clothing and accessories, select colors and fabrics, and oversee the final production of their designs.

Clothing designers create and help produce men’s, women’s, and children’s apparel, including casual wear, suits, sportswear, formalwear, outerwear, maternity, and intimate apparel.

Common responsibilities include:

  • Creating the designs,
  • Choosing the colors and fabrics,
  • Overseeing technical designers
  • Creating the prototypes and patterns
  • Working with the manufacturers and suppliers during the production stage

In fashion design, employers usually seek individuals with a 2- or 4-year degree who are knowledgeable about textiles, fabrics, ornamentation, and fashion trends.

Jobs in the industry are expected to become open at an average rate over the next ten years with the best positions open in retail clothing. Fashions designers earn between $30,000 and $120,000 per year.

Related Pages:
College and School Programs – Design, Communication, and Arts

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor

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Career Profile – Pharmacy Aide

pharmacy aidePharmacy aides perform administrative duties in pharmacies. Aides often are clerks or cashiers who primarily answer telephones, handle money, stock shelves, and perform other clerical duties.

They work closely with pharmacy technicians. Pharmacy technicians usually perform more complex tasks than do aides, although in some States the duties and titles of the jobs overlap.

Common responsibilities include:

  • Answering phone inquiries from customers
  • Stocking shelves and inventory
  • Cash register duties
  • Assisting pharmacy technicians

Pharmacy aides don’t need any formal education but it is usually preferred that they have a High School diploma. As an entry level job, prospects are decent. Earnings average between $7 and $11 per hour.

Related Pages:
College and School Programs – Healthcare and Medical

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor

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Career Profile – Private Detective or Investigator

private detectiveEveryone has seen the TV shows where the private detective solves the crime and saves the day. This profession isn’t always that exciting but it can be.

Private detectives assist attorneys, individuals and sometimes even law enforcement agencies by investigating individuals and events.

There is no formal educational requirement to be a private detective, but if you’re going to work for a large law firm or insurance agency you may need an education in criminal justice or police science.

Many companies also look for law enforcement experience when hiring a detective. Your responsibilities working in this field are too varies to list here but here are some of the basics that are common to all detectives:

  • Have an ability to listen and observe when collecting the facts
  • Have an eye trained to look for what is out of the ordinary
  • Be able to perform searches on a computer using new technology
  • Be able to detach yourself personally from a case
  • Operate honestly and with integrity

Job prospects for private detectives are extremely good right now and growing rapidly. The number of internet based scams and criminal activities have created a need for the high tech investigator and this need will grow as technology becomes more widespread.

Related Pages:
College and School Programs – Security and Law Enforcement

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor

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Career Profile – Cosmetologist, Barber, or Esthetician

cosmetologistBarbers and cosmetologists focus on providing hair care services to enhance the appearance of customers.

Other personal appearance workers, such as manicurists and pedicurists, shampooers, and skin care specialists provide specialized beauty services.

Hairdressers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists offer a wide range of beauty services, such as shampooing, cutting, coloring, and styling of hair.

In addition, cosmetologists may be trained to give manicures, pedicures, and scalp and facial treatments; provide makeup analysis; and clean and style wigs and hairpieces. Common responsibilities include:

  • Evaluating a client’s needs and wants
  • Performing the specific services for hair, nails, or skin
  • Cultivating relationships to ensure repeat business

barber
Requirements for a profession as a personal appearance worker are a certified course in cosmetology or barbering and the passing of a state licensing exam.

Job prospects are expected to be good over the next decade, particularly for graduates of cosmetology schools. Personal appearance workers generally earn between $7 and $21 per hour.

Related Pages:
College and School Programs – Culinary, Hospitality, and Personal Services

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor

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Career Profile – Heating, Air-conditioning, and Refrigeration Mechanic and Installer (HVAC)

hvac

Photo Courtesy of This Old House

Heating, air-conditioning, and refrigeration systems consist of many mechanical, electrical, and electronic components, such as motors, compressors, pumps, fans, ducts, pipes, thermostats, and switches.

In central forced air heating systems a furnace heats air which is distributed via a system of metal or fiberglass ducts.

Technicians must be able to maintain, diagnose, and correct problems throughout the system. To do this, they adjust controls to recommended settings and test the performance of the system using specialized tools and equipment.

Common responsibilities include:

  • Reading blueprints
  • Evaluating systems for existing or potential problems
  • Repairing or replacing broken components
  • Routine maintenance

Many secondary and postsecondary technical and trade schools, junior and community colleges, and the U.S. Armed Forces offer 6-month to 2-year programs in heating, air-conditioning, and refrigeration. Jon prospects are decent and the industry has a number of entry level openings. Salaries are based on experience and education levels.

Related Pages:
College and School Programs – Mechanics, Precision, and Construction

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor

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Career Profile – Nuclear Medicine Technologist

nuclear medicine technologistNuclear medicine is another form of diagnostic imaging similar to X-ray or MRI.

Nuclear Medicine Technologists administer a radioactive substance called radiopharmaceuticals and then monitor their effect on the body.

To become a Nuclear Medicine Tech you need to attend a college or university for a program that can range from one to four years and result in a certificate, associates degree or bachelors.

Because the field is so small it is recommended that you also receive training in radiology or a similar field to increase your value on the job market.

Responsibilities of an NMT include:

  • Operating diagnostic equipment
  • Administering radio-pharmaceuticals and monitoring their effects
  • Communicating the results with patients and doctors
  • Making recommendations for additional procedures or treatment

The job outlook for NMT’s is much better for those who receive training in other fields. The number of openings in Nuclear Medicine right now is small but should increase with the development of new applications for the science. The projected growth outlook is higher than the national average for employment as a whole.

Related Pages:
College and School Programs – Healthcare and Medical

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor

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Career Profile – Computer Programmer

computer programmerComputer programmers write, test, and maintain the detailed instructions called programs that computers follow to perform specific tasks.

Programmers also create, design, and test logic for solving problems by computer. With the help of other technology specialists, they figure out which instructions to use to make computers perform specific functions.

Common responsibilities include:

  • Writing computer programs in a variety of different computer languages
  • Testing programs for effectiveness and user compatibility
  • Updating existing programs with modifications as technology advances
  • Repair programs that have faults or “glitches” that are bothersome to the user

A Bachelors degree is generally required to become a computer programmer. The industry employed 435,000 people in 2006 but is expected to decline between now and 2016 by about 4%. Automation and centralization are responsible for cut-backs in personnel and as technology advances further human beings become less necessary so competition is fierce. The average salary for a computer programmer is between $38,000 and $106,000 per year based on experience and level of education

Related Pages:
College and School Programs – Computer and Information Technology (IT)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor

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Career Profile – Physical Therapist Assistant and Aide

physical therapistPhysical therapist assistants and aides help physical therapists with treatment that improves patient mobility, relieves pain, and lessens physical disabilities of patients.

A physical therapist might ask an assistant to help patients learn to use crutches, for example, or an aide to gather and prepare therapy equipment.

Patients include accident victims and individuals with disabling conditions such as lower-back pain, arthritis, heart disease, fractures, or head injuries.

Common responsibilities include:

  • Assist the physical therapist with tasks such as exercising patients
  • Preparing physical therapy equipment for use by patients
  • Teach patients how to use equipment such as crutches and walkers
  • Gather data and take notes for use by the physical therapist

Physical therapist assistants are required to have a High School diploma and many are working towards an Associates Degree in Physical Therapy.

Due to the increase in senior populations and advances in modern medicine the outlook for physical therapist assistants’ jobs is very promising. Physical therapist assistants earn between $26,000 and $57,000 per year.

Related Pages:
College and School Programs – Healthcare and Medical

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor

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Career Profile – Construction Equipment Operator

construction operatorConstruction equipment operators use machinery to move construction materials, earth, and other heavy materials at construction sites and mines.

They operate equipment that clears and grades land to prepare it for construction of roads, buildings, and bridges.

They use machines to dig trenches to lay or repair sewer and other pipelines and hoist heavy construction materials. They may even work offshore constructing oil rigs.

Construction equipment operators also operate machinery that spreads asphalt and concrete on roads and other structures. Common responsibilities include:

  • Maintaining a working knowledge of construction machinery and techniques
  • Operating machinery for a determined length of time
  • Following the instructions of a construction foreman
  • Cleaning and maintaining work materials and apparatus

Most construction equipment operators are trained and certified on the job but there are outside certification programs available at a number of different institutions.

Hourly wages for construction equipment operators are high but work is erratic and can be seasonal in some parts of the country.

Related Pages:
College and School Programs – Mechanics, Precision, and Construction

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor

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