Have a question for you.

By daydreamer630 Latest Reply 2012-02-02 20:20:07 -0600
Started 2012-01-21 06:18:54 -0600

I'm looking into going to college. Not just for some fancy degree but to find a field that I can use my experiences to help others. The problem is I have no idea what field to be looking into. I thought maybe dietetics, yet I don't really know if that'd be a whole lot of help.

So, I wondered if you have ideas? I'm utterly stumped and lately I haven't gotten anywhere. This is probably a silly thing to ask but I figured if any one could help it'd be all of you!

27 replies

kdroberts 2012-02-02 20:20:07 -0600 Report

Don't just think of directly helping people. You can often do a lot more behind the scenes that can really impact peoples lives, they would just never know it. I believe that's what I do. No patient will ever know and maybe even the healthcare professionals won't either. If you have a passion for healthcare and technology then look into Health Information Technology (HIT) at some of the new, important, careers that are being becoming available.

robertoj 2012-02-02 03:08:38 -0600 Report

Have you thought about becoming a Certified Diabetes Educator. It seems to me that the main problem with diabetics is lack of education. Diet is essential so I think it would be worthwhile.

kdroberts 2012-02-02 20:12:32 -0600 Report

A CDE is a worth goal for sure, but it's a long term one that can be had through a variety of different ways. I guess the common one is the nursing route but you can do it as a clinical psychologist, occupational therapist, optometrist, pharmacist, physical therapist, physician, podiatrist, dietitian (with some additional requirements) or any health care profession as long as you have a masters in social work from an accredited college. Plus there is a 2 or 3 year professional experience requirement and a pretty hefty teaching hours requirement. With the way nursing and some others of those are going it may be a better option to look into something that will a) give you a much higher chance of a job on graduation and b) the job will allow you to complete the other requirements. With nursing you may end up waiting 5-10 years after graduating to get the job, experience and meet all the criteria.

If it's a problem deciding what to do, take a break and see what happens. Don't force it or do something you think you might want to do, do what you find interesting and what keeps you genuinely interested.

Young1s 2012-02-02 10:46:55 -0600 Report

It's just so simple and perfect! Why didn't I think of suggesting that! And she could go from place to place (hospital/clinic, support group, rally etc…), spreading the message, instead of being tied to one particular hospital or clinic.

REWART2008 2012-02-02 07:03:18 -0600 Report

My wife has been a nurse for 20 years and I could not agree more. We are in the process of starting our own nures staffing agency within the next year or so. Prestige Medical Staffing will be the name.

EllieS 2012-02-02 01:34:47 -0600 Report

I touch lives (and many other things) being an RN. It pays the bills, there are always jobs. Do we have have a glorified job? Not where I work.

jayabee52 2012-02-02 18:58:45 -0600 Report

I can attest to that Ellie! I worked as a home health and a hospital Certified nurse Aide for 11 years a few years ago. RNs were often unsung heroes!

red flower lady
red flower lady 2012-01-24 17:41:47 -0600 Report

Have you tried going to your local college and speaking with a counselor/advisor? They have resources to help you out, I did that whith my son when he was deciding between college or the Air Force. He went Air Force then after spending four yrs in Iraq, etc he was able to go to college and is about to finish.

Old-n-Grey-n-Wiser 2012-01-24 15:42:24 -0600 Report

As you choose a something to pursue check into the burnout rate in that profession, you do not want to waste part of your life preparing for something that will burn you out and turn you off after a few years.
edit, like the mustache ;<{)

pixsidust 2012-01-24 14:21:18 -0600 Report

Also there are two year, three year and 4 year RN's. LPN is not the same value so skip that or you will be stuck in a nursing home. You can even work with pediatrics and juvenile diabetes

dietcherry 2012-01-24 14:29:20 -0600 Report

Ooh good point! I had a friend who worked as an LPN at a nursing home back in the late 90s; we asked her why she wanted to work there and she responded that it was the only job she could get. We only asked that because she was in her 20s and we thought she might want to be at a big hospital with cute doctors and nurses and such ;)

2012-01-24 17:06:19 -0600 Report

At my hospital the CNAs as well as the LVNs get the brunt work. It's always the RNs the get all the glorified work. Go figure.

pixsidust 2012-01-22 10:40:26 -0600 Report

Any field can be a help to others
You just have to remember to touch people's lives
in a meaningful way when you interact with them.
You can be a light and bloom where you are planted
no matter what work you do.

Now to earn a living, you need a profession in demand
The dietitian field is very narrow and you will be unemployed a lot

Why not become a nurse?
You will have skills to support yourself for a life time
You can then specialize to an area as you see the need
But the core skill of nursing will allow
you to see people when they are needy
Teach them about their care
Help them emotionally, and most are very open…
And feed yourself and family

If you try to skip the field of nursing to go to
social work, psychology, physical therapy, occupational therapy
or the dietary fields…well there again
those fields are narrow and without demand.
I worked 25 years as a recruiter for an international recruiting firm
We watched trends, placed people and produced statistics so
I know what I am talking about.
Colleges will try and sell you their programs
but are not in touch with the actual job market
Their job placement programs are a laughable joke
and can not be counted on

With the foundation of being an RN
You will have job market value…that means paying your bills
You will be meaningful and can teach what you know
With that foundation you can go on to be an administrator
a teacher, and a specialist.
You will have the hands on care and contact with people who need you
A specialist can be in endless areas
Without the RN, those opportunities of continued growth are lost

I have always thought the doctors may prescribe
but the care and daily knowledge of the RN is what gets us well
Touch lives and be an RN

dietcherry 2012-01-24 13:08:32 -0600 Report

Wow Christy you almost talked me into being an RN! lol
Seriously do you know where the job market is headed? Like what jobs will be most in demand in this new climate? Just in case my home business doesnt work out, Im going to need a back up!!

byrun 2012-01-24 13:17:16 -0600 Report

Us "boomers" are beginning to enter our retirement years. We are the 800# gorilla or glut of humanity that will need plenty of medical attention for the next 20-50 years.

Caroltoo 2012-01-24 13:17:01 -0600 Report

I know Hawaii is seriously looking for RNs in hospitals, schools, and non-profit health based programs. Salaries are as high here as those of some doctor's I've talked with who work in the HMO programs (successful private practice obviously goes higher).

o jenkins
o jenkins 2012-01-23 23:38:47 -0600 Report

pixsidust, I see your passion for Nursing is strong, but I must say you are wrong about the other fields of work, I am 50 years old and have started a second career, by going back to college. My degree is Psychology, if you had done a little research on the Bureau Of Labor and Statistics, you would know that the projected outlook for this area and the others you mentioned, has potential growth for the next 20 years. I totally agree with you that the nurse is the backbone of the Doctor as far as talking and listening and giving advice to a patient.

But just over a year and a half ago when my 80 year old father got cancer in the upper lob and Aspergillus mold spore infection in the bottom lobs of the same lung and he wanted no part of a nursing home or care facility. So, I signed the papers to be his 24/7 care giver. However, I must say the cancer doctors said they had never seen someone from the public take such good care of a patient, but he was my father,

But I moved my computer over to his house, because he ask me and my wife to take care of him, I used my computer to gain the knowledge to take care of him, a lot was just plain old common sense though. At the end the doctors wanted hospice called in, but daddy said NO! I knew we were fighting a losing battle and I am pretty sure he did to, but as long as I could keep giving him his meds by mouth, the doctors could not over rule him on hospice. I did have Home Health Care Nurses that would come twice a week to check on him and bath him and give him physical therapy, other than that I was there day and night. It was hard, I lost fifty pounds before it was over with, but I made my daddy's wish to be at home when he passed away.

pixsidust 2012-01-24 12:05:04 -0600 Report

In 25 years, I never had anyone ask me to find them someone with a psych degree. Read the ads…you will not see requests for that degree.
The ads will tell the story despite this labor report

You will see them for nursing in quantity. There are no recruiters specializing in people placement for psych degrees either. Recruiters go where the demand and money are. Companies only pay recruiters for what they have a hard time finding people. For every one working psych major there are a couple hundred nurses working.

Schools will tell you the degree can be used in other areas but most companies do not agree. My contacts are HR but the higher management as well. I know many unemployed psych majors. Its really proofs in the pudding, law of supply and demand, and having the flexibility to expand in many directions that I choose nursing

I wish you luck, look at the adds and maybe consider nursing?
You will never be unemployed again.

dietcherry 2012-01-24 13:14:40 -0600 Report

This is the downside to the new job market. The jobs that are mostly hiring are attracting people that ordinarily wouldnt choose that line of work. I couldnt be a nurse; I would get too attached and bring my work home. I am best suited for business and as a salesperson which is what Ive done the bulk of my career. I hate whats happened in our country and we will suffer for it for a long time.

Caroltoo 2012-01-22 13:54:03 -0600 Report

Good thought, Christy. Definitely in demand over here in Hawaii. So get a degree and come live in your favorite vacation spot! That's a win-win situation!!

jayabee52 2012-01-23 18:32:29 -0600 Report

Don't forget the Certified Nurse aides (CNAs) Christy! That is really "hands on" care.

But it doesn't pay well, so RN would be a better choiice of career.

Just before I got divorced, and just before I became disabled I sought to become a RN. I didn't follow through due to my need to work as a Certified Nurse Assistant, because I had to have some way to support myself and my training to be a RN. My disability put the brakes on my 2nd attempt.

pixsidust 2012-01-24 14:28:37 -0600 Report

CNA's are limited in job possibilities and income. I took the CNA class and never tested. I got offered a position as a Cardiology Tech with training. They would not let me take off work to take the test. I worked 7 years in one of the top medical Centers in the US. I was part of their code team, as well as other things. I got paid a pittance. $6.50 after 7 years of working. I was not in a demand field.

My sister went to nursing school and was offered to work two twelve hour shifts on the weekend. For doing that she would get paid for forty hours. RN's have so many avenues to go down. If your going in debt for school, get something for your money

Caroltoo 2012-01-24 07:31:20 -0600 Report

Yes, lots of need for CNAs. Frankly, lot's of need for anything related to gerontology. We are an aging population here in the US.

Young1s 2012-01-21 22:05:32 -0600 Report

Good for you for wanting to help others in this way. I guess it would depend upon how long you want to be in school. Here's a list of health careers that may be of assistance. Or just try Googling others that are more specific to your interests (medical assisting maybe).

Oops! Almost forgot to give you the link.


TsalagiLenape 2012-01-21 19:46:53 -0600 Report

Well there is nutrition and of course you could pair that in the medical field with your knowledge of diabetes. Hope this helps. Hugs

Caroltoo 2012-01-21 15:11:55 -0600 Report

Sounds like you may have the dream … helping people through appropriate nutrition.

You might check out the employment opportunities to see if they would match with your interests. Sometimes the real world opportunities don't match with what we see as potential use for the knowledge.

With time and effort, you can sometimes build a "place of you own" where you call the shots, but you need to be able to deal with the realities of the employment world in the meanwhile. It's give and take … but it can take a while to get what you really want.

GabbyPA 2012-01-21 14:48:33 -0600 Report

Your heart is in the right place and you will find something to fill that dream. I will ask you this...What do you get excited about? What do you have a passion for? How you answer those questions will give you hints on what you can do. If you have a passion for anything, you will always find a way to out-pour that to others.

Sometimes you have to try something you think you want to find out that there is something else that holds your heart.