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Opportunities in Health Sciences - Iowa Career Pathways

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Date: 
Friday, October 5, 2018
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Opportunities in Health Sciences

Iowa Career Pathways

This project was completed by the Iowa Department of Education, in support of the Future Ready Iowa Initiative, through a public/private collaboration with the Iowa Department of Public Health, Iowa Hospital Association, and Iowa Health Care Association. Special thanks to Kirkwood Community College, Good Shepherd Inc., UnityPoint Health, Accura HealthCare, Iowa Workforce Development, and Iowa Economic Development Authority. Quantitative research was conducted to identify the most common occupations in health sciences in Iowa in addition to a series of online surveys and in-person focus groups with employers in Cedar Rapids, Mason City, Des Moines, and Sioux City. This direct employer feedback and support was vital in building job descriptions and employer expectations, while the included education and wage levels are averaged based on labor market intelligence gathered from across the state.

FOREWORD

Health science careers provide the foundation for the healthy communities necessary to fuel Iowa’s growing economy through a dynamic and exciting range of physical, mental, and public health care offerings. Due to an aging population and related health care needs, it is also one of the most secure and fastest growing sectors. Already the largest employer in the state, with over 220,000 employees spread between over 10,600 locations, this growth will further increase the need for quality health science education and training programs across the state.

To meet these and similar workforce needs of industries across Iowa, the Governor’s Office established the Future Ready Iowa Initiative with a goal of 70 percent of Iowans possessing education or training beyond high school by 2025. To support this important initiative, the Iowa Department of Education partnered with the Iowa Department of Public Health, Iowa Hospital Association, and Iowa Health Care Association to develop these promotional materials and career pathways to highlight a wide range of exciting career opportunities offered in Iowa’s critical health sciences industry.

A challenge to readers of this document, from students just beginning to learn about jobs to adults with extensive work experience who may be looking for a career change, is to drop any preconceived notions or ideas they may have about this industry. With an expanding list of specializations, diverse work environments, and innovations in technology, this industry offers much more than the stereotypical doctor and nurse positions within a hospital setting. We have only scratched the surface of what can be accomplished by modern medicine and science, specifically in regards to recent innovations through genomic testing, DNA sequencing, and advanced assistive technology, so the opportunities in this field are virtually endless.

No matter your experience, background, personality, or interests, you will find great opportunities in health sciences that offer a good paycheck, pride in making a difference in your community, huge potential for secure and long-term career growth, and the ability to transfer those skills anywhere in the world!

WHAT HEALTH SCIENCES MEANS TO ME

Through a series of focus groups and surveys, we asked Iowans what it means to work in health sciences. Below is a summary of the responses we received. As reflected in the words used and quotes provided, this industry is made up of highly dedicated, passionate, and caring individuals.

Keywords: Problem-solving, safety, security, caring, saving lives, heartwarming, dynamic, helping, respect, technology, meaningful, motivating, variety, fast-paced, impact, data, satisfying, integrity, challenging, fun, x-rays, ever-changing, community

Quotes: “Making a difference in the lives of others in our community.”

“I get to help with population health, tracking diseases and helping to prevent their spread.”

“The most rewarding part of my job is taking care of patients I see in town.”

“Flexible schedules, great benefits, and job security.”

“No matter how the economy is doing, there is always a need for health care workers!”

“Every day is different and offers a new opportunity to make a difference.”

“I love seeing our patients grow and thrive!”

“Always evolving with new technology.”

“I get to travel to see my patients in their own homes, not stuck in an office somewhere.”

“You have to be a chameleon in this field, adapting to different environments and situations.”

“Lots of career growth potential with a variety of specializations to choose from.”

“Helping people live their last years with quality and compassion.”

 

CUSTOMIZED CAREER OPPORTUNITIES – Make a Difference Your Way!

More so than many other industries, health science offers seemingly endless opportunities to specialize in both human and animal care. As highlighted below, a few of the more common specializations focus on the Four P’s of Health Science: areas or parts of the body, patient populations, medical procedures, and conditions or predicaments. Some health science professionals may even choose to specialize in multiple areas, such as a Pediatric Cardiovascular Surgeon or Farm Animal Infectious Disease Pathologist. Our expanding understanding of health science and advances in technology will allow these professionals to further specialize and make a difference in their own unique ways.

  1. PARTS - the various internal or external areas, features, organs, functions, or interconnected systems of the body.

ALLERGIST, CARDIOLOGIST, DERMATOLOGIST, ENDOCRINOLOGIST, GASTROENTEROLOGIST, HEMATOLOGIST, NEUROLOGIST, ORTHODONTIST, PODIATRIST, UROLOGIST

  1. POPULATIONS - factors that may impact health status and care, such as patient age, gender, animal species, or type of occupation.

ADDICTION RECOVERY, ENTOMOLOGIST, GERIATRICS, GYNECOLOGIST, HERPETOLOGIST, HOSPICE, PEDIATRICIAN, PUBLIC HEALTH, SPORTS MEDICINE, ZOOLOGIST

  1. PROCEDURES - aspects involving the different methods for health status diagnosis, treatment, and recovery.

ANESTHESIOLOGIST, BEHAVIORIST, EMERGENCY, GENETIC COUNSELOR, NUCLEAR, OBSTETRICIAN, OSTEOPATHIC, PROSTHODONTIST, REHABILITATION, SURGEON

  1. PREDICAMENTS - types of physical, mental, and other medical or dental conditions, diseases, injuries, disabilities, or disorders.

GENETICIST, INFECTIOUS DISEASES, MENTAL HEALTH, ONCOLOGIST, OTOLARYNGOLOGISTS, PATHOLOGIST, PERIODONTIST, PULMONOLOGIST, RHEUMATOLOGIST, SLEEP MEDICINE

TECHNOLOGIES OF THE FUTURE

Although there are already some amazing and innovative health science technologies in use across the state, below are a few that have the potential for creating new and exciting career opportunities. These technologies further fuel the need for a skilled workforce with advanced computer, information technology, and critical thinking skills. Behind every new or improved technology are real people who set up, operate, and maintain them.

Advanced Robots & Automation

Advanced robotics provide a safer, more efficient, and satisfying experience for health care recipients by assisting with complicated surgical procedures, cleaning and maintaining facilities, lifting and transporting patients or heavy equipment, and even providing direct care for those who choose to remain in their homes and are unable to afford or accommodate a human in-home health aide. Automation and assistive technology also allow pharmacies and medical facilities to more quickly and accurately measure, dispense, and monitor inventory for a wide range of their medications and other hazardous or expensive medical products and waste. Although currently limited in their abilities, advances in technology and artificial intelligence are expanding the abilities of robotics and technology to better assist and complement the work of health care providers.

Personalized Medicine & Nutrition

Advances in DNA sequencing, genetic testing, and advanced health screenings allow health care professionals to customize prescriptions, treatments, diets, and other aspects of our overall health and well-being to fit our exact personal needs. Modern medicine still often relies on metrics such as age, weight, and gender to determine dietary needs, treatment type, and volume of medication (i.e. average adults take two pills, children take one). Genetically customized treatment options will be more accurate, safer, and less expensive for both patients and providers. These advanced testing and screening options also allow for earlier diagnosis and treatment of potential genetic or inherited diseases and disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, or heart disease. This diagnosis with allow healthy living and a longer, happier, and more productive life.

Smart Homes & Technology

“Smart” homes that are connected to the internet will allow health care providers and support staff to monitor and communicate with patients from anywhere in the world. New medication dispensers will send notifications when opened, determine amount of medication taken, and send alerts when a dose has been missed. Refrigerators will monitor eating and drinking habits, food and medication temperatures, and automatically order groceries, allowing patients more freedom to remain in their own homes. Enhanced wearable devices will also monitor patient blood pressure, activity levels, and other nutrition or health statistics, allowing for continuous monitoring and potentially lifesaving intervention.

FLEXIBLE SCHEDULING OPTIONS – Three- or four-day work weeks and bonus pay options

An aspect of health science that many workers appreciate is the flexible and nontraditional scheduling options that are helpful to those with personal or professional responsibilities such as students, parents, and retired workers. Many modern health science facilities offer care and services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Some even offer 10- or 12-hour shifts that allow employees to complete an entire week of work in three or four days, with the rest of the week off for relaxing, family time, or continuing their education for quicker advancement or promotion. Below are a few of the more common shifts in this field, but many employers are willing to work with employees on customized schedules, especially for the rapidly expanding needs for home or mobile health care services.

Most employers also offer hard working and dedicated employees the opportunity to earn overtime pay or shift differentials as a perk for working off-hours or weekends. Workers can expect to earn their normal hourly wages plus an added bonus for these shifts (i.e. $20 per hour base + $5 per hour bonus = $25 per hour total). Strong job security and additional incentives such as sign-on bonuses, paid benefits, tuition reimbursement, and discounted health care make careers in health sciences very attractive.

Name Hours
1st Shift 7 AM - 9 AM until 3PM - 5PM
2nd Shift 3 PM - 5 PM until 10PM - 12 AM
3rd Shift 10 AM - 12 AM until 6 AM - 8 AM
4x10 (Four 10-hour days, three days off) 6 AM - 8 AM until 4 PM - 6PM
3x12 (Three 12-hour days, four days off) 5 AM - 7 AM until 5 PM - 7PM

 

 

 

 

 

 

FLEXIBLE TRAINING OPTIONS – Registered Apprenticeship programs let you earn while you learn!

Similar to scheduling and pay options, many employers offer additional training options to fit varying schedules, learning preferences, and career goals. While the most common, affordable, and direct approach to earning the necessary education to be successful in this industry is through one of Iowa’s 15 community colleges, a growing number of the careers highlighted in this document have a corresponding Registered Apprenticeship option. This option offers on-the-job (OTJ) training and related technical instruction (RTI) that allows Registered Apprentices to earn a paycheck from day one. Look for the Earn & Learn logo for a career that is apprenticeable. Visit EarnAndLearnIowa. gov to learn more about these great opportunities, view testimonials from real apprentices in Iowa, and fill out a form to be contacted by a representative from a local IowaWORKS field office for a direct conversation.

DIVERSE WORK ENVIRONMENT OPTIONS – You work where?

When hearing the term “health care,” many think of a local hospital or clinic they’ve visited when not feeling well. Modern health science offers the ability to research, provide, and receive care in a growing number of locations and work environments. Each day health science professionals test samples in cutting edge laboratories, travel from home to home to offer direct care, sell medical products to customers around the world, provide therapy from a heated swimming pool at an assisted living community, or even virtually check on and monitor patients from the comfort of their own home.

The list below offers a few examples of some of the more common environments that offer some of these new and exciting opportunities. Each occupation description throughout the document is also labeled with the various locations or environments in which an occupation may be practiced that may better fit someone’s personality or interest type. As technology continues to expand, new opportunities for the delivery of safe, affordable, and quality health care will further evolve to keep pace. Which fits you best?

Hospital

Centralized medical center or facility designed to diagnose and deliver common or emergency medical or dental care for sick or injured patients in a secure and sterile environment. Many also include emergency, trauma, and surgical services.

Ambulatory Surgical or Specialty Center

Medical center or facility designed for more specialized diagnosis, treatment, and surgical procedures for conditions and injuries that may only require a short-term recovery and monitoring process (outpatient care).

Doctor or Dentist Office

Office setting designed for more intimate, one-on-one care with a family or personal physician, dentist, or medical team. Generally offers a limited number of services and tests.

Medical, Dental, or Urgent Care Clinic

Clinical setting designed for less-urgent medical, dental, and related care in a smaller, more intimate setting. May offer a limited number of services and tests.

Assisted Living Community

Community living arrangement for aging or disabled residents who may require minimal assistance or medical care and wish to retain a high level of independence and ability to enter and leave the facilities on their own.

Skilled Nursing Facility

Residential facility offering a high level of medical care and support, often for injured, disabled, or aging adults requiring 24-hour monitoring and care in a safe and secure setting. Also sometimes known as nursing homes and long-term care facilities.

Hospice

Residential center offering specialized care and 24-hour monitoring for those patients unlikely to return to independent living or who may be facing the end of life due to advanced illness, injuries, or age in a safe and secure setting.

Laboratory or Research Facility

Sterile and secure laboratory or commercial location for testing, research, and development procedures, often located away from patients, visitors, and health care staff.

Community or Public Health Services Provider

Commercial or office settings often spread throughout a community to provide community, social, or public health services. Some providers may reside in a centralized location, offer in-home services, or exist entirely in a digital or online environment.

Home Care & Waiver Services

Offers patients the ability to receive care and services in the comfort of their own home or a designated area close to home. Amount of services and testing offerings may be limited, but continue to expand with advances in technology.

CAREER INTEREST TYPES – What type of career matches your personality and interests?

We are born with certain character traits, while some are developed as we grow and experience new things. There are many different tests or assessments available to help us determine what careers might match our personality or interests. The most common test includes six interest themes based on research by John Holland that can be taken for free at FutureReadyIowa.gov. These include the Realistic (R), Investigative (I), Artistic (A), Social (S), Enterprising (E), and Conventional (C) groups, reflected in the list below.

After identifying the top three preferred interest areas, a user is left with an interest type, such as RIA, CES, or ECR. Occupations in this document have been labeled with these codes to help readers better understand potential matches for further research and investigation. Don’t worry if a career doesn’t match exactly to your code as this is not an exact science, but rather a starting point to help guide users in their career exploration process. There are careers for everyone in health sciences!

REALISTIC – You like to work with your hands and use physical skills including repairing and making things with tools and machines. You prefer working on projects you can see and feel, not what can be imagined or theorized.

INVESTIGATIVE – You tend to focus on ideas and enjoy collecting and analyzing information. You are curious and tend to prefer situations with minimal rules or regulations. You tend to like math and science.

ARTISTIC – You focus on artistic self-expression, value independence, and are not afraid to experiment with ideas. You enjoy variety and tend to feel cramped in structured situations. Creativity guides you.

SOCIAL – You are highly concerned with people, make friends easily, and are a good communicator. You enjoy working with others to identify and solve problems. You are helpful, friendly, and trustworthy.

ENTERPRISING – You are goal-oriented and often provide leadership and a high degree of energy when working with others. You tend to get bogged down by too much science, data, and analytical thinking.  You are more comfortable selling and negotiating.

CONVENTIONAL – You pay close attention to detail and work well with numbers and data. You prefer following the rules and working with clear expectations.

HEALTH SCIENCES OCCUPATION FAMILIES

Health sciences offer students and job seekers an opportunity to make a real and lasting impact in their community. Below are six general interrelated groups, or “families,” that highlight some of the ways in which they can do so. Although these groups do not contain all of the great opportunities in this industry, these are some with the highest demand or potential for growth within the state of Iowa. Which describes you best?

Direct Patient & Therapeutic Care – The Caregivers

[Common Interest Types: Realistic, Social, Conventional]

You enjoy working with people! Your critical thinking and problem solving skills help to diagnose, troubleshoot, and treat a wide range of injuries, disorders, and diseases for your patients. You don’t mind being on the front line of the fight to help keep members of your community healthy, happy, and productive.

Community & Behavioral Health – The Supporters

[Common Interest Types: Social, Investigative, Enterprising]

You remove barriers! People come to you with problems or concerns and you help put together a plan to help directly or connect them with the right people, services, and other community resources to get things done. Your patience, empathy, and passion for helping others makes your community a better place to live.

Imaging & Diagnostic Testing – The Investigators

[Common Interest Types: Realistic, Investigative, Conventional]

You have an eye for detail! You’re more comfortable working behind-the-scenes by running tests and evaluations that help to investigate, diagnose, and treat patients. Your sharp mind and problem solving abilities work best when put to use in a laboratory or other facility with less direct contact with the general public.

Biotechnology Research & Development – The Innovators

[Common Interest Types: Investigative, Realistic, Conventional]

You’re changing the world! Your curiosity and creativity are leading the way in the research and development of new and innovative pharmaceuticals, medical treatments, and advanced technologies that improve the quality and length of human life. These occupations are on the cutting edge of modern medicine.

Health Informatics & Business Operations – The Advisors

[Common Interest Types: Conventional, Enterprising, Social]

You seal the deal! Your top notch communication, sales, and business skills help keep the business open and helping people. You play an important, but often indirect role by helping to promote, sell, and improve the products and services your company offers in your community and around the world.

Hospitality & Facility Management – The Maintainers

[Common Interest Types: Realistic, Conventional, Enterprising]

You keep things running! You enjoy working with your hands and seeing how you help those around you feel better, safer, and more comfortable while under your care or in your facilities. People appreciate how you like to keep things clean, maintained, and in order.

USING THESE CAREER PATHWAYS

The information in these pathways is not intended to cover every occupation within the health sciences industry in Iowa. Rather, it is intended to provide the student, job-seeker, parent, educator, and others with a high-level view of in-demand or growing positions within each occupation family. Information has been averaged to help guide the reader in evaluating which of these jobs are of interest and worthy of further research through the online Future Ready Iowa Career Coach tool, which allows readers to customize labor, salary, education, and other information based on their specific location within the state. Additional recommendations for next steps and a career exploration action plan are included at the end of the document.

Occupations have been grouped into the following three levels based on factors such as typical education, experience, and wages. Many workers in this industry do not follow a direct pathway within the same occupation family, but rather enter and progress through a wide range of different careers from each family. Actual education requirements, job duties, and wage levels will vary from employer to employer around the state. Leadership and management opportunities are available in all families, but may not be reflected in these materials.

1. Entry Level – Get Started

Typical Experience: 0 – 3 years

Typical Titles: Assistant, Technician, Worker, Aide, Apprentice

These positions are the best entry points for someone with little experience or education, as they typically require only a high school diploma or equivalent (HSED) or a technical certification/training and little to no prior related work experience. Many workers enter this industry through the Direct Patient and Therapeutic Care; Health Informatics and Business Operations; or Hospitality and Facility Management families. Although these careers start with lower wages, they are often a great starting point with huge potential for promotion and advancement with hard work, dedication, and planning.

2. Mid-Level – Get Skilled

Typical Experience: 4 – 7 years

Typical Titles: Supervisor, Coordinator, Engineer, Scientist, Technologist

These positions pay more than those at the entry level, but also often require some related work experience and additional education, such as a technical training/certificate, two-year associate’s degree, or four-year bachelor’s degree. This is generally the point where workers have identified a career they enjoy and begin fine-tuning their skills and earning related licensures. Some experienced workers from other industries or students who have completed internships or apprenticeship training programs may be able to enter at this elevated level.

3. Senior Level – Get Specialized

Typical Experience: 8+ years

Typical Titles: Practitioner, Director, Administrator, Specialist, Manager

These positions are typically high-level management or specialized positions and require significant education, such as a master’s degree or advanced doctorate degree, in addition to applicable licenses, leadership training, and extensive experience in the industry. Learning a specific organization’s history, culture, and values is also often important to lead at this level.

DIRECT PATIENT & THERAPEUTIC CARE – THE CAREGIVERS

Occupations in the Direct Patient & Therapeutic Care family focus primarily on changing the physical health status of patients through direct care, treatment, and health education. They spend most of their time working directly with patients to diagnose, troubleshoot, and treat a wide range of physical illnesses, injuries, disorders, and diseases.

The occupations within this family are some of the most commonly known by the general public, such as doctors, nurses, and medical technicians, but there are a growing number of new and exciting opportunities to consider as breakthroughs in science and technology expand the potential for health care in the future.

As outlined in the “Customized Career Opportunities” section, there are also a wide range of specializations or areas of focus to consider within this family to fit all personalities and interest types. Some occupations specialize on specific types of injuries or diseases and procedures, such as cancer (oncologist) or back pain, while others may choose to focus on specific body parts or populations, such as skin care (dermatologist) and children (pediatrician).

Someone who enjoys working with people, doesn’t mind being around illness, and wants to make a difference in their community will like these roles. Travel is not often required, but there are a growing number of institutions offering in-home and traveling or mobile medical services.

Career Spotlight:

Jennifer W. – Oncology Nurse Navigator at UnityPoint Health – Des Moines (Des Moines, IA)

“I assist patients and families who have been diagnosed with cancer. I feel that oncology care is a calling and one where each member of our team seeks to meet others where they are at authentically and without judgment. I never take for granted the great responsibility to find ways to break down the barriers they face physically, emotionally, socially, financially, and spiritually. I’ll do whatever I can for my patients, including being an advocate, a cheerleader, a squeaky wheel, or a motivator to help them persevere and continue to move forward. UnityPoint Health – Des Moines gives me the opportunity to serve alongside my teammates and I am so thankful for their unique gifts and all they do to shine upon and help our patients and families.”

* Wage range is an average of entry level to experienced workers.

 

Direct Care Worker – Entry Level

Assist the sick, elderly, disabled, and other types of patients or residents with daily living activities. Duties performed are often non-medical and may include making beds, doing laundry, washing dishes, and preparing meals. May also assist customers with proper hygiene, nutrition, and taking medications, reporting any concerns or health status changes to health care professionals when appropriate.

Typical Education/Training: High School Diploma/HSED

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $10 - $13/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Basic Medical Terminology and Care 2) Active Listening and Communication 3) Observing and Documenting Information 4) Customer and Personal Service 5) Attention to Detail 6) Medical and Office Software

Similar Roles/Titles: Personal Care Aide, Direct Support Professional, Patient Care Assistant (PCA), Personal Care Attendant (PCA), Resident Care Assistant (RCA)

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SRC - Social, Realistic, Conventional

 

Home Health Aide (HHA) – Entry Level

Provide routine health care assistance to the sick, elderly, disabled, and other patients or residents, such as changing bandages, applying topical medications, and actively monitoring health status by measuring blood pressure, body temperature, and other metrics at home, reporting any health concerns or changes when appropriate. May also provide more basic personal care such as bathing, dressing, and grooming.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $12 - $15/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Basic Medical Terminology and Care 2) Active Listening and Communication 3) Observing and Documenting Information 4) Customer and Personal Service 5) Attention to Detail 6) Transportation and Safety

Similar Roles/Titles: Certified Home Health Aide, Home Care Provider, Direct Care Worker, Hospice Aide,

In-Home Support Professional

Typical Work Environments: Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SRC - Social, Realistic, Conventional

 

Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) – Entry Level

Respond to emergency assistance calls by traveling to locations to assess and administer basic medical care to sick, injured, or incapacitated individuals, such as providing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), supplying oxygen, and administering treatments for allergic reactions. Safely and quickly transport injured or sick persons to medical facilities for continued treatment and monitoring.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $12 - $18/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical and Dental Care 2) Public Safety and Security 3) Critical Thinking and Crisis Management 4) Comprehend and Deliver Instructions 5) Driving and Operating Vehicles 6) Safety Regulations and Procedures

Similar Roles/Titles: Basic EMT, First Responder, Multi Care Technician, Ambulance Driver, Ambulance

Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Home

Career Interest Types: SIR - Social, Investigative, Realistic      

         

Veterinary Assistant – Entry Level

Feed, water, bathe, groom, and examine pets and other non-farm animals for signs of illness, disease, or injury. Inspect, clean, and disinfect equipment, cages, and work areas to ensure a safe and secure environment. May provide routine post-operative care, administer oral or topical medication, and prepare samples for testing, under the supervision of veterinarians or other animal science staff.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma         

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years    

Wage Range: $11 - $16/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Animal Behavior and Care 2) Biology and Chemistry 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Observing and Documenting Information 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Medical and Office Software

Similar Roles/Titles: Veterinarian Technician, Animal Care Provider, Animal Caregiver, Research Animal Attendant, Technician Assistant

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: RSI – Realistic, Investigative, Social

 

Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) – Entry Level

Work closely with patients and under the supervision of a dentist before, during, and after dental appointments, treatments, or consultations. Assist with scheduling appointments, setting up equipment, preparing patients for treatments, and keeping records for dentists and other dental health professionals. May assist during some dental or minor surgical procedures.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma         

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years    

Wage Range: $12 - $18/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical and Dental Care 2) Medical and Office Software 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Documenting and Processing Information 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Attention to Detail

Similar Roles/Titles: Dental Assistant, Registered Dental Assistant (RDA), Expanded Duty Dental Assistant (EDDA), Orthodontic Assistant (Ortho Assistant), Orthodontic Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: CRS – Conventional, Realistic, Social

 

Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) – Entry Level                                       

Provide direct, hands-on health care and assistance to sick, injured, or elderly patients or residents, helping with bathing, dressing, eating, and other basic daily activities, often under the supervision of health care and nursing staff. Measure, monitor, and document patients’ health status or nutrition levels. May perform some minor medical procedures with additional training and certifications.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma         

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years    

Wage Range: $12 - $18/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical and Dental Care 2) Medical and Office Software 3) Attention to Detail 4) Customer and Personal Service 5) Active Listening and Communication 6) Documenting & Processing Information

Similar Roles/Titles: Nursing Aide, Nursing Assistant, Nursing Care Attendant, Medical Aide, Medication Aide

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Community

Career Interest Types: SCR - Social, Conventional, Realistic

 

Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) – Entry Level

Assist doctors, nurses, and other health care professionals with a wide range of administrative and clinical duties, such as scheduling appointments, maintaining medical records, preparing patients for examination, taking vital signs, drawing blood, and administering medications. May also assist in cleaning and sterilizing medical or lab equipment to maintain a safe and secure work environment.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $13 - $17/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical and Dental Care 2) Biology and Chemistry 3) Customer & Personal Service 4) Medical and Office Software 5) Active Listening & Communication 6) Observing & Documenting Information

Similar Roles/Titles: Medical Assistant (MA), Clinical Assistant, Doctor’s Assistant, Medical Office Assistant, Registered Medical Assistant (RMA)

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SCR - Social, Conventional, Realistic

 

Pharmacy Technician – Mid-Level  

Assist pharmacists with the safe and accurate preparation of medications by measuring, mixing, counting, labeling, and recording amounts or dosages of medications according to prescription orders provided by phone, in-person, or electronic forms of communication. May assist customers with the filling and sale of prescriptions, verifying needs or refill availability with prescribing agents when necessary.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $13 - $22/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical Product Storage and Handling 2) Medical and Office Software 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Customer and Personal Service 5) Sales and Marketing 6) Attention to Detail and Mathematics

Similar Roles/Titles: Accredited Pharmacy Technician, Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT), Compounding Technician, Pharmaceutical Inventory Specialist, Billing & Quality Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Clinic, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: CRE - Conventional, Realistic, Enterprising

 

Surgical Technician – Mid-Level

Assist surgeons, registered nurses, and other medical professionals in surgical operations and procedures. Ensure the proper set up of various tools and equipment within the operating room, prepare and transport patients to and from surgery, provide instruments and other supplies during surgery, and help count sponges, needles, supplies, and other instruments after surgery.

Typical Education/Training: Associate’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $18 – $29/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical and Surgical Equipment 2) Active Listening and Communication 3) Monitoring of Patient Vital Signs 4) Inspection and Attention to Detail 5) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Surgical Tech, Certified Surgical Technician (CST), Surgical Technologist, Operating Room Technician (OR Tech), Surgical Scrub Tech

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Lab

Career Interest Types: RSC - Realistic, Social, Conventional

 

Paramedic – Mid-Level   

Respond to emergency assistance calls by traveling to assess and administer advanced medical care to sick, injured, or incapacitated individuals, such as starting intravenous lines, providing advanced airway management, and resuscitating patients suffering from life-threatening complications from heart attacks, strokes, and other advanced physical trauma. May lead or supervise EMT’s and ambulance drivers.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $16 - $22/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medicine and Dentistry 2) Public Safety and Security 3) Critical Thinking and Crisis Management 4) Comprehend and Deliver Instructions 5) Mechanical Tools and Equipment 6) Safety Regulations and Procedures

Similar Roles/Titles: Advanced EMT, First Responder, Multi Care Technician, Field Paramedic, Flight Paramedic

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SIR - Social, Investigative, Realistic

 

Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) – Mid-Level

Provide direct, hands-on health care for sick, injured, disabled, or aging patients or residents under the supervision of a nurse or advanced health care staff. Duties may include checking blood pressure, inserting catheters, and ensuring the comfort of patients or residents with personal care needs. Communicate clearly with patients, answer questions, and address concerns. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $16 - $20/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medicine and Dentistry 2) Physical Therapy and Counseling 3) Medical and Office Software 4) Customer and Personal Service 5) Active Listening and Communication 6) Documenting and Processing Information

Similar Roles/Titles: Charge Nurse, Clinic Nurse, Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN), Office Nurse, Triage LPN

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SRC - Social, Realistic, Conventional

 

Physical Therapy Assistant (PTA) – Mid-Level 

Observe, document, and assist physical therapists in providing treatments, procedures, and care to mentally and/or physically impaired patients. May also directly provide some minor routine functions or treatments, track patient progress, and consult with physical therapists on the development or modification of therapy plans in accordance with patient status. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Associate’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $16- $24/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Physical Therapy and Counseling 2) Kinesiology and Biology 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Observing and Documenting Information 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Medical and Office Software

Similar Roles/Titles: Physical Therapy Aide, Certified PTA, Home Health PTA, Licensed Physical Therapist Assistant (LPTA), Physical Therapy Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SRI - Social, Realistic, Investigative

 

Respiratory Therapist (RT) – Mid-Level 

Lead the assessment, treatment, and care for patients or residents with breathing disorders. Monitor responses to therapy, such as vital signs, arterial blood gases, or blood chemistry changes, and consult with physicians, nurses, or other healthcare professionals about results. Safely set up and operate devices, such as mechanical ventilators or environmental control systems. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Associate’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $20 - $27/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Respiratory and Physical Therapy 2) Medicine and Dentistry 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Customer and Personal Service 5) Observing and Documenting Information 6) Medical and Office Software

Similar Roles/Titles: Certified RT (CRT), Registered RT (RRT), Respiratory Care Practitioner (RCP), Cardiopulmonary Technician, Respiratory Rehabilitation Specialist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SIR - Social, Investigative, Realistic

 

Registered Nurse (RN) – Mid-Level 

Diagnose patient health care needs, develop and implement nursing care plans, and maintain medical records for sick, injured, disabled, or aging patients or residents. Order, interpret, and evaluate various diagnostic or clinical tests and procedures. May provide case management services or advise on health maintenance, disease prevention, and additional health education. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Associate’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $20 - $27/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medicine and Dentistry 2) Physical Therapy and Counseling 3) Medical and Office Software 4) Active Listening and Communication 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Documenting and Processing Information

Similar Roles/Titles: Charge Nurse, Clinic Nurse, Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN), Office Nurse, Triage LPN

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: RSI - Realistic, Social, Investigative

 

Dental Hygienist – Mid-Level 

Provide dental care and preventative maintenance services by polishing, removing mineral deposits and stains, and applying sealants and fluoride treatments to teeth. Help prevent, detect, and treat diseases by examining the mouth, head, and neck areas, taking X-rays, recording medical and dental histories, and educating patients on healthy dental habits. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Associate’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $26 - $33/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Dental Hygiene Tools and Procedures 2) Medical and Office Software 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Biology and Radiology 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

Similar Roles/Titles: Dental Cleaning Specialist, Mobile Dental Hygienist, Dental Hygiene Coordinator, Registered Dental Hygienist (RDH), Preventative Dental Care Specialist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Community

Career Interest Types: SRC - Social, Realistic, Conventional

 

Medical Therapist (Physical, Speech, Occupational) – Senior Level 

Diagnose, develop, and deliver physical or mental therapy and rehabilitative programs that improve mobility or communication, relieve pain, and improve or correct disabling conditions resulting from physical or mental disease, injury, or trauma. Assess plans and progress with patients, colleagues, and other health care professionals. May direct or supervise assistants and other support staff. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Master’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $30 - $45/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Rehabilitation Therapy and Counseling 2) Advanced Kinesiology and Biology 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Customer and Personal Service 5) Observing and Documenting Information 6) Medical, Scientific, and Office Software

Similar Roles/Titles: Physical Therapist (PT), Occupational Therapist (OT), Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP), Rehabilitation Therapist, Recovery Specialist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SIR - Social, Investigative, Realistic

 

Veterinarian – Senior Level

Examine, diagnose, treat, and help prevent medical or dental diseases and injuries for a wide range of types or species of animals. May conduct or assist in the research and development of new or improved medical products, treatments, or procedures. Consult with animal owners or caretakers to ensure long term health and well-being of animals through maintenance and preventative care. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Doctorate Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $30 - $45/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Animal Behavior and Care 2) Advanced Medicine and Dentistry 3) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 4) Pharmaceutical and Medical Products 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Medical and Office Software

Similar Roles/Titles: Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM), Emergency Veterinarian, Animal Doctor, Staff Veterinarian, Veterinary Surgeon

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: RSI - Realistic, Social, Investigative

 

Pharmacist – Senior Level

Review, research, and dispense pharmaceuticals or specialized medical treatments prescribed by doctors, dentists, and other health care professionals. Educate patients about the appropriate use, potential side effects, and available refills for prescriptions or medications. Advise on the selection, dosage, interactions, and other considerations of medication therapy for patients. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Doctorate Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $40 - $53/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Pharmaceutical Products and Safety 2) Mathematics, Chemistry, & Biology 3) Medicine and Dentistry 4) Active Listening and Communication 5) Medical and Office Software 6) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

Similar Roles/Titles: Clinical Pharmacist, Hospital Pharmacist, Pharmacy Manager, Registered Pharmacist, Staff Pharmacist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: ICS - Investigative, Conventional, Social

 

Advanced Practice Nurse – Senior Level

Examine, diagnose, and treat patients for common medical illnesses or injuries, often independently from a doctor or as the lead for a smaller health care team. May order, perform, or interpret diagnostic tests, such as lab work and x-rays, prescribing related medication or additional treatments. Promote and educate health care and disease prevention programs. Advanced nursing training and professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Master’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $40 - $52/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Advanced Medicine and Dentistry 2) Management and Leadership 3) Therapy and Counseling 4) Active Listening and Communication 5) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 6) Medical and Office Software

Similar Roles/Titles: Nurse Practitioner, Certified Nurse Specialist, Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, Certified Nurse Midwife, Nursing Program Lead

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SIR - Social, Investigative, Realistic

 

Dentist – Senior Level

Diagnose, treat, and help prevent common injuries, diseases, and malformations of the teeth and gums through various dental treatments or preventative care measures, such as routine teeth cleaning, sealing, and polishing. May also provide surgical or cosmetic repair or removal of diseased or damaged teeth and gums that may be impacting oral hygiene and patient health. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Doctorate Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $50 - $89/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Advanced Medicine and Dentistry 2) Active Listening and Communication 3) Radiology and Surgical Procedures 4) Customer and Personal Service 5) Personnel and Human Resources 6) Management and Leadership

Similar Roles/Titles: Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD), Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS), Family Dentist, Pediatric Dentist, General Dentist

Typical Work Environments: Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: IRS - Investigative, Realistic, Social

 

Primary Care Physician – Senior Level

Diagnose, treat, and help prevent common injuries and diseases through various medical treatments, prescribed medications, or preventative care measures. May refer patients to specialists and other health or dental care professionals for further diagnosis or treatment. Educate patients or residents about healthy living habits and other local health issues or concerns. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Doctorate Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $71 - $117/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Advanced Medicine and Dentistry 2) Biology and Human Behavior 3) Therapy and Counseling 4) Active Listening and Communication 5) Medical and Office Software 6) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

Similar Roles/Titles: Doctor, Medical Doctor (MD), General Care Physician, Family Doctor, Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO)

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: ISR - Investigative, Social, Realistic

 

Physician Assistant (PA) – Senior Level

Assist physicians with various duties, such as diagnosing illness, counseling patients, developing medical or recovery plans, and providing medical treatments. Under the supervision of a physician, may also prescribe medications or serve as a patient’s primary healthcare provider, such as in rural or harder-to-reach locations. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Master’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $41 – $56/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Advanced Medicine and Dentistry 2) Therapy and Counseling 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 5) Observing and Documenting Information 6) Medical and Office Software

Similar Roles/Titles: Certified Physician Assistant (PA-C), Clinical Physician Assistant, Family Practice Physician Assistant, Medical Provider Assistant, Doctor Assistant

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SIR - Social, Investigative, Realistic

 

COMMUNITY & BEHAVIORAL HEALTH – THE SUPPORTERS

Occupations in the Community & Behavioral Health family specialize in mental health care, rehabilitation services, and overall social or public wellness. They strive to improve not only physical health, but also the hearts, spirits, and minds of those in their communities through a wide range of social and human services, often focusing on strategies for counseling, treatment, and preventative care maintenance.

While much of the work in these occupations is conducted directly with patients within a community, a large portion of time is often also spent organizing events or sessions, collaborating with other public and private support agencies, advocating for patient rights and access, and educating members of the community about available goods, services, and assistance programs.

These occupations are good for someone who enjoys helping others, is comfortable around a wide range of people, and wants to make a positive impact on their community. Patience, empathy, and communication skills are very important in these occupations, some of which may also involve travel and working outside.

 

Career Spotlight:

Lisa O. — Dietitian and Diabetes Educator at Mitchell County Regional Health Center (Osage, IA)

“My grandmother, aunt, and sister are all nurses, however, I did not know about the many other possibilities until I was researching career options that were more people and service-oriented. In my current role, I work with patients in the hospital, outpatients, and the community. For people who are hospitalized, I provide education on special diets and ensure patients are eating adequately for recovery. I also provide medical nutrition therapy for outpatients for conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and obesity. In the community, I speak in a variety of venues sharing information on general healthful eating and application strategies.”

 

Dietary Technician – Entry Level

Assist in the design, planning, and implementation of food service and nutritional programs for small to large-scale food production operations in a wide variety of working environments, under the supervision of a dietitian. May also plan and produce meals based on established guidelines, teach principles of food and nutrition, or counsel individuals on dietary and health needs.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $11 - $18/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Dietary and Nutrition Programs 2) Food Production and Safety 3) Comprehend and Deliver Instructions 4) Counseling and Therapy 5) Computers and Electronics 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Dietary Assistant, Dietary Clerk, Nutrition Tech, Dietary Aide, Health Support Specialist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SIR - Social, Investigative, Realistic

 

Interpreter/Translator – Entry Level

Assist doctors, dentists, and other professionals in communicating with a diverse population. Interpret or translate oral or sign language for in-person interactions and written text from emails, letters, or other forms of non-verbal communication to ensure understanding and the accurate delivery of health care services. May specialize in specific languages, populations, or locations within a community.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $12 - $20/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) English and Foreign Languages 2) Speaking, Reading, & Writing Comprehension 3) Comprehend and Deliver Instructions 4) Basic Medical and Dentistry Terminology 5) Computers and Electronics 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Medical Interpreter, Paraprofessional Interpreter, Medical Translator, Technical Translator, Communications Specialist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: ASE - Artistic, Social, Enterprising

 

Social & Human Services Assistant – Entry Level

Assist and advocate for community members by providing a wide range of services, such as counseling, rehabilitation, and social work. May assist clients in researching, identifying, and obtaining available social or community services and benefits. May assist social workers and other public or community health professionals with developing, organizing, promoting, and conducting various programs or services.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $13 - $22/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 2) Active Listening and Communication 3) Social and Human Services 4) Customer and Personal Service 5) Computers and Electronics 6) Therapy and Counseling

Similar Roles/Titles: Community Advocate, Family Support Worker, Human Services Program Specialist, Outreach Specialist, Social Work Associate

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: CSE - Conventional, Social, Enterprising

 

Mental Health Technician (MHT) – Entry Level

Assist doctors, nursing, and other medical staff with the care and management of mentally or emotionally impaired patients or residents in their daily living activities, participating in educational and recreational activities, or accompanying them to and from examinations and treatments. May need to occasionally restrain confused or distressed patients for the safety and security of themselves and others.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $15 - $22/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Basic Psychology and Human Behavior 2) Therapy and Counseling 3) Customer and Personal Service 4) Comprehend and Deliver Instructions 5) Observation and Critical Thinking 6) Public Safety and Security

Similar Roles/Titles: Mental Health Aide (MHA), Psychiatric Aide, Mental Health Worker (MHW), Psychiatric Nursing Aide, Resident Care Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SRC - Social, Realistic, Conventional

 

Community Health Worker – Mid-Level

Assist individuals and communities to adopt healthy behaviors by taking advantage of new or existing programs and services. Conduct outreach for medical personnel or health organizations for programs that promote, maintain, and improve individual and community health. May provide social support and informal counseling, advocacy, and collect data to help identify community health needs.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $14 - $25/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Social and Community Services 2) Therapy and Counseling 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Observing and Documenting Information 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Medical and Office Software

Similar Roles/Titles: Community Outreach Worker, Community Health Program Representative, Community Health Advocate, Community Nutrition Educator, Community Nutrition and Wellness Program Advisor

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SIE - Social, Investigative, Enterprising

 

Health Care Social Worker – Mid-Level 

Advocate and provide individuals and communities with psychological or social support needed to cope with chronic, severe, or terminal illnesses, injuries, or diseases. Duties may include advising family caregivers, providing patient education and counseling, making referrals to other health care professionals or agencies, and addressing barriers to accessing health care or support services within a community.

Typical Education/Training: Master’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $15 - $28/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Therapy and Counseling 2) Medical and Dental Terminology 3) Health and Human Services 4) Active Listening and Communication 5) Observing and Documenting Information 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Clinical Social Worker, Hospice Social Worker, Medical Social Worker, Social Work Case Manager, Substance Abuse Social Worker

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SIC - Social, Investigative, Conventional

 

Rehabilitation Counselor – Mid-Level 

Meet with and counsel individuals coping with various mental, social, and occupational difficulties that result from birth defects, illness, disease, accidents, stress, or trauma. Assess client needs and research, design, and implement rehabilitation programs to maximize their independence and employability, which may include counseling, training, and job placement assistance. Professional license may be required.

Typical Education/Training: Master’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $16 - $29/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Therapy and Counseling 2) Psychology and Human Behavior 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Addiction and Substance Abuse 5) Observing and Documenting Information 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Rehabilitation Specialist, Vocational Placement Specialist, Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC), Substance Abuse Counselor, Rehab Case Manager

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SRC - Social, Realistic, Conventional

 

Mental Health Counselor – Mid-Level

Work with individuals and communities to promote positive mental and emotional health by conducting mental health assessments, developing treatment plans, leading therapy sessions, and educating on preventative care methods. May focus on areas like addiction or substance abuse, family or marital problems, stress management, self-esteem, and aging or death. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Master’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $17 - $30/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Therapy and Counseling 2) Psychology and Human Behavior 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Observing and Documenting Information 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Medical and Office Software

Similar Roles/Titles: Mental Health Therapist, Behavior Support Specialist (BSS), Mental Health Case Manager, Mental Health Specialist, Therapist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SIE - Social, Investigative, Enterprising

 

Dietitian/Nutritionist – Mid-Level

Lead the design, planning, and implementation of food service and nutritional programs for small to large-scale food production operations. May supervise activities of staff or a team, counsel individuals or communities, and conduct nutritional research. May also specialize in specific types of food products, food production procedures, or populations within a community. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $7 - $32/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Dietary and Nutrition Programs 2) Food Production and Safety 3) Comprehend and Deliver Instructions 4) Counseling and Therapy 5) Observing and Documenting Information 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Clinical Dietitian, Food & Nutrition Program Manager, Dietary Manager, Registered Dietitian, Food and Nutrition Advisor

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SIC - Social, Investigative, Conventional

 

Health Educator – Senior Level

Design, manage, and provide health education programs that help individuals and communities improve and maintain healthy lifestyles, policies, and environments. Collect and analyze data to identify community needs, monitor participation and feedback, and evaluate overall success of programs. May also provide professional development and training for new or current health care professionals.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $18 - $32/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Education and Training 2) Management and Leadership 3) Medical Equipment and Software 4) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 5) Health and Safety Regulations 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Clinical Instructor, Clinical Nurse Educator, Community Health Education Coordinator, Education Coordinator, Public Health Educator

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SEC - Social, Enterprising, Conventional

 

Social and Community Services Manager – Senior Level

Plan, direct, and coordinate the overall management of a social service program or community outreach organization. Oversee budgets and policies regarding participant involvement, program requirements, and benefits or impact on a community, ensuring compliance with all appropriate compliance and regulatory rules, regulations, and laws. Assist with the hiring, firing, and training of new or current staff.

Typical Education/Training: Master’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $20 - $34/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Community and Social Services 2) Management and Leadership 3) Personnel and Human Resources 4) Therapy and Counseling 5) Active Listening and Communication 6) Government and Regulatory Law

Similar Roles/Titles: Social Services Director, Clinical Services Director, Director of Social Services, Community Programs Director, Community Outreach Program Director

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Office, Clinic, Community

Career Interest Types: ESC - Enterprising, Social, Conventional

 

Clinical Psychologist – Senior Level

Diagnose or evaluate the mental and emotional health of the members of a community through direct and indirect observation, short and long term communication practices, and in-depth or advanced psychological tests. Consult with other health care professionals to develop personalized plans or programs of treatment that will improve mental health and well-being. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Doctorate Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $33 - $45/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Advanced Psychology and Human Behavior 2) Therapy and Counseling 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Government and Regulatory Law 5) Observing and Documenting Information 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Clinical Therapist, Forensic Psychologist, Licensed Psychologist, Licensed Therapist, Staff Psychologist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: ISA - Investigative, Social, Artistic

 

Psychiatrist – Senior Level 

Diagnose, prescribe, treat, and help prevent mental, emotional, or behavioral disorders through a wide range of counseling, pharmaceutical, and psychotherapeutic procedures or treatments. Analyze and evaluate patient data using advanced medical or scientific software. Collaborate with physicians, psychologists, social workers, and other health professionals. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Doctorate Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $54 – $92/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Advanced Psychology and Medicine 2) Advanced Therapy and Counseling 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Pharmaceuticals and Medical Treatments 5) Observing and Documenting Information 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Consulting Psychiatrist, Medical Psychiatrist, Staff Psychiatrist, Director of Mental Health, Rehabilitative Psychiatrist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: ISA - Investigative, Social, Artistic

 

IMAGING & DIAGNOSTIC TESTING – THE INVESTIGATORS

Occupations in the Imaging & Diagnostic Testing family often play a supportive role in running tests and evaluations that aid in the detection, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases, injuries, or other physical conditions. This is one of the fastest growing areas of health sciences and offers a great way to enter the field without extensive education and experience requirements.

These professionals will have some direct patient interaction, such as when drawing blood or taking X-rays, but most of their time is spent in laboratories or other off-site locations while remotely assisting health care professionals by conducting prescribed tests, investigating results, and communicating findings. These professionals may also make recommendations for additional tests or specialized treatments based on their findings.

These roles are great for people who are curious, have an attention to detail, and like to solve puzzles or problems. New and exciting innovations to technology and medicine will continue to expand the opportunities in this family, especially in the areas of genetic testing, DNA sequencing, and on-demand advanced health screenings.

 

Career Spotlight:

Shara K. — Core Lab Supervisor at Mercy Medical Center North Iowa (Mason City, IA)

“I first learned about careers in health care at a high school job fair. I started as a Medical Lab Technologist, but have been able to advance pretty quickly to Supervisor. I like that every day is different and you can always learn new things, especially with new advances in technology. The lab may not always stand out in the medical world, but has a huge impact on patient care, sometimes without ever even meeting the patients. As much as 70% of clinical decisions are based off of the lab results we provide. The lab is a small, but mighty part of the health care system!”

 

Phlebotomist – Entry Level

Safely and carefully draw and label blood for tests, transfusions, donations, or research purposes. Educate and inform patients about procedures and risks, assisting with recovery from any adverse reactions. Safely handle and dispose of blood, blood products, and other hazardous fluid or tissue materials in accordance with all applicable laws, standards, and policies. May require travel to and from various sites.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0-3 years

Wage Range: $13 - $19/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Blood Drawing and Storage 2) Medical Equipment and Software 3) Customer and Personal Service 4) Active Listening and Communication 5) Medical Records and Note Taking 6) Hazardous Materials Storage and Disposal

Similar Roles/Titles: Blood Drawer, Phlebotomy Technician, Patient Service Technician (PST), Medical Lab Assistant, Registered Phlebotomist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: CRI - Conventional, Realistic, Investigative

 

Veterinary Technician – Entry Level

Perform medical tests for use in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of diseases and other medical conditions in animals, including the development of vaccines, serums, and other medications. Clean, sterilize, and maintain instruments and equipment to ensure a safe environment. May also assist veterinarians during surgery and other procedures with advanced training.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0-3 years

Wage Range: $14 - $20/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Animal Behavior and Care 2) Medical Equipment and Software 3) Chemistry and Biology 4) Measuring and Data Analysis 5) Active Listening and Critical Thinking 6) Hazardous Materials Storage and Disposal

Similar Roles/Titles: Veterinary Assistant, Veterinary Lab Tech, Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT), Licensed Veterinary Technician (LVT), Animal Laboratory Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: RIC - Realistic, Investigative, Conventional

 

Medical Laboratory Technician – Entry Level

Perform medical tests for use in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of diseases and other medical conditions in humans. Receive, prepare, and test blood or tissue samples for further analysis and development of medical treatments and corrective measures. Clean, sterilize, and maintain instruments and equipment to ensure a safe and accurate testing environment.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0-3 years

Wage Range: $15 - $25/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical Equipment and Software 2) Chemistry and Biology 3) Measuring and Data Analysis 4) Mathematics and Science 5) Active Listening and Critical Thinking 6) Hazardous Materials Storage and Disposal

Similar Roles/Titles: Lab Tech, Clinical Laboratory Technician, Medical Technician, Lab Assistant, Medical Research Analyst

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: RIC - Realistic, Investigative, Conventional

 

Dental Laboratory Technician – Entry Level

Design, construct, and repair full or partial dentures or other corrective dental devices for and replacements of natural teeth that have been lost or damaged due to disease, trauma, or improper dental care. Consult and collaborate with dentists or orthodontists to plan and customize dental prostheses for individual patients. May also assist with initial consultations, device installation, and final patient satisfaction.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0-3 years

Wage Range: $15 - $26/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical and Dental Equipment 2) Computer Aided Design (CAD) Software 3) Mathematics and Critical Thinking 4) Medical and Dental Care 5) Measuring and Analyzing Data 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Dental Prostheses Specialist, Dental Ceramist, Dental Technician, Denture Technician, Orthodontic Laboratory Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: RIC - Realistic, Investigative, Conventional

 

Radiology Technician – Entry Level

Assist in the operation and maintenance of equipment and supplies necessary to offer an internal view of the human body through x-ray, ultrasound, and other radiologic technologies and procedures. Prepare machines and patients for procedures, answering questions and offering advice for addressing anxiety and other concerns. Observe regulatory and safety laws, rules, and regulations at all times.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0-3 years

Wage Range: $17 - $25/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical Equipment and Software 2) Radiology and X-Ray Technology 3) Chemistry and Biology 4) Measuring and Data Analysis 5) Active Listening and Critical Thinking 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: X-Ray Technician, Radiology Tech (RT), Registered Radiographer, X-Ray Assistant, Radiology Assistant

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: RCS - Realistic, Conventional, Social

 

Cardiovascular Technologist – Mid-Level

Perform medical tests for use in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of diseases and other medical conditions in humans. Receive, prepare, and test blood or tissue samples for further analysis and development of medical treatments and corrective measures. Clean, sterilize, and maintain instruments and equipment to ensure a safe and accurate testing environment.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $19 - $29/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medicine and Dentistry 2) Medical Equipment and Software 3) Measuring and Data Analysis 4) Mathematics and Science 5) Active Listening and Critical Thinking 6) Radiology and X-Ray Technology

Similar Roles/Titles: Cardiovascular Technician, Vascular Technologist, Cardiac Laboratory Technologist, Cardiac Technician, Cardiopulmonary Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab

Career Interest Types: RIS - Realistic, Investigative, Social

 

Radiology Technologist – Mid-Level 

Perform diagnostic imaging procedures, such as x-ray, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and computed tomography (CT) scans, that offer an internal view of the human body. Consult with radiologists to observe, diagnose, and develop treatments for internal diseases or medical conditions. Observe all safety laws, rules, and regulations to ensure patient safety and satisfaction at all times.

Typical Education/Training: Associate’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $22 - $31/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical Equipment and Software 2) Radiology and X-Ray Technology 3) Chemistry and Biology 4) Mathematics and Science 5) Measuring and Data Analysis 6) Active Listening and Critical Thinking

Similar Roles/Titles: X-Ray Technologist, X-Ray Tech, CT Technologist, Mammography Technologist, Radiology Specialist, Staff Technologist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab

Career Interest Types: RSI - Realistic, Social, Investigative

 

Medical Laboratory Technologist – Mid-Level  

Assist in the operation and maintenance of equipment and supplies necessary to offer an internal view of the human body through x-ray, ultrasound, and other radiologic technologies and procedures. Prepare machines and patients for procedures, answering questions and offering advice for addressing anxiety and other concerns. Observe regulatory and safety laws, rules, and regulations at all times.

Typical Education/Training: Associate’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $24 - $32/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical Equipment and Software 2) Chemistry and Biology 3) Measuring and Data Analysis 4) Mathematics and Science 5) Active Listening and Critical Thinking 6) Complex Problem Solving

Similar Roles/Titles: Medical Technologist (MT), Clinical Laboratory Scientist (CLS), Lead Lab Tech, Research Assistant, Chief Medical Technologist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: IRC - Investigative, Realistic, Conventional

 

Radiologist – Senior Level

Consult with patients and health care professionals to determine needs for diagnostic imaging procedures. Research and analyze findings from scans to diagnose and develop treatments for internal diseases or medical conditions, sometimes through the use of radioactive or hazardous materials. May assist in the supervision and training of other radiology or lab support staff. Professional license required.

Typical Education/Training: Doctorate Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $45 - $100/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Radiology and X-Ray Technology 2) Advanced Biology and Physics 3) Complex Reasoning and Problem Solving 4) Data Measurement and Analysis 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Advanced Medicine and Dentistry

Similar Roles/Titles: Attending Radiologist, Diagnostic Radiologist, Interventional Radiologist, Radiology Resident, Staff Radiologist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab

Career Interest Types: IRS - Investigative, Realistic, Social

 

Clinical Laboratory Scientist – Senior Level

Plan, oversee, or coordinate overall imaging and diagnostic testing projects to ensure compliance with all appropriate rules, regulations, and protocols and to remain in line with quality control standards and objectives. May assist in the evaluation and analysis of data trends and report findings or additional recommendations to various audiences and business stakeholders. May require advanced certification or professional license.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $41 – $59/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Analytical and Scientific Software 2) Management and Leadership 3) Medicine and Dentistry 4) Biology, Chemistry, & Physics 5) Advanced Mathematics and Measuring 6) Imaging and Diagnostic Testing

Similar Roles/Titles: Clinical Lab Manager, Testing Program Manager, Diagnostic Testing Administrator, Diagnostics Specialist, Imaging Program Director

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: EIC - Enterprising, Investigative, Conventional

 

BIOTECHNOLOGY RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT – THE INNOVATORS

Occupations in the Biotechnology Research & Development family are involved in the research and development of new or improved technologies, pharmaceuticals, and medical treatments or procedures. These professionals are on the cutting edge of modern medicine, pioneering new theories and developing life-changing products.

Much of this work is conducted in a laboratory, facility, or other external site that offers little direct interaction with the patients and staff who will ultimately be using these new products or procedures. Some occupations may specialize on specific types of products, such as medical devices or pharmaceuticals, while others may focus on a specific body part or disease, such as the circulatory system and the cure for cancer.

Those who enjoy testing new ideas and aren’t afraid of failure will do well in this family. Their hard work, critical thinking, and creativity also help lead the way to create new or improved methods for testing, diagnosing, and treating a wide range of diseases or disorders that continue to evolve and resist current medical treatment options. The work from this family has the potential to change the world!

 

Career Spotlight:

Emad O.— Medical Lab Scientist, Technical Lead at Mercy Medical Center (Cedar Rapids, IA)

“Since high school I have been fascinated by science, how the human body works, and what causes diseases. As a Technical Lead in our Core Laboratory, I analyze human body specimens like blood and cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) to assist physicians in providing excellent patient care. I also help with quality control and equipment maintenance around the lab. I hope to one day hold a PhD in the field of clinical lab sciences.”

 

Bioinformatics Technician – Entry Level

Gather, analyze, and track data about biological functions or characteristics to assist scientists in areas such as pharmaceuticals, medical technology, genomic testing, and DNA sequencing. Build and maintain databases for processing and analyzing genomic or other biological information to be used in the development of new or improved medical treatments, medications, or technologies.

Typical Education/Training: Associate’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years Wage Range: $16 - $28/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Analytical and Scientific Software 2) Computers and Electronics 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Mathematics and Biology 5) Data Measurement and Analysis 6) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

Similar Roles/Titles: Statistical Assistant, Bioinformatics Analyst, Bioinformatics Specialist, Biotechnician, Research Assistant

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Lab

Career Interest Types: IRC - Investigative, Realistic, Conventional

 

Chemical Laboratory Technician – Entry Level

Assist scientists in the qualitative and quantitative analysis of solids, liquids, and gaseous materials. Observe, document, and report test findings to aide in the research and development of new products or processes, quality control analysis, and contribute to work involving experimental, theoretical, or practical applications of chemistry and related sciences. Assist in maintaining a clean and safe work area at all times.

Typical Education/Training: Associate’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $17 - $26/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Mathematics and Chemistry 2) Analytical and Scientific Software 3) Computers and Electronics 4) Measuring and Data Analysis 5) Safety and Quality Control 6) Hazardous Materials Storage and Disposal

Similar Roles/Titles: Chemical Analyst, Formulation Technician, Lab Technician, Lab Chemical Tester, Quality Control Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Lab

Career Interest Types: IRC - Investigative, Realistic, Conventional

 

Quality Control Analyst – Mid-Level 

Review, evaluate, and recommend changes to health science products or processes in order to achieve consistent quality and safety. Conduct routine and on-the-spot analysis of raw materials, environmental samples, and finished goods, such as pharmaceuticals and medical or surgical equipment. Interpret and compare test results to specifications and in accordance with all laws, rules, and regulations.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $19 - $32/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Inspection and Data Analysis 2) Mathematics and Measuring 3) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 4) Safety and Quality Control 5) Reading Technical Documents and Prints 6) Attention to Detail

Similar Roles/Titles: Inspector, Analytical Lab Analyst, Quality Assurance Technician, Quality Assurance Analyst, Quality Control Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab

Career Interest Types: CIR - Conventional, Investigative, Realistic

 

Bioinformatics Scientist – Mid-Level

Conduct or lead a research team using bioinformatics theory and methods for pharmaceuticals, medical technology, genomic testing, and DNA sequencing. Design databases and develop algorithms for processing and analyzing genomic information or other biological information to be used in the development of new or improved medical treatments, medications, or technology.

Typical Education/Training: Master’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $18 - $34/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Analytical and Scientific Software 2) Computers and Electronics 3) Advanced Mathematics and Biology 4) Data Measurement and Analysis 5) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 6) Active Listening and Communication

Similar Roles/Titles: Bioinformaticist, Director of Bioinformatics, Director of Informatics, Informatics Scientist, Information Process Engineer

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab

Career Interest Types: ICR - Investigative, Conventional, Realistic

 

Biomedical Engineer – Mid-Level 

Research, design, and develop equipment and processes for manufacturing biological and health systems or products, such as artificial organs, prostheses, and health management and care delivery systems, by applying knowledge and principles of biology, engineering, and biomechanics. Install, adjust, maintain, or repair related equipment or processes to ensure a safe, quality product at all times.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $23 - $42/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Biology and Mathematics 2) Engineering and Technology 3) Complex Problem Solving 4) Research and Data Analysis 5) CAD or AutoCAD Software 6) Safety and Quality Control

Similar Roles/Titles: Biomedical Scientist, Biomedical Engineering Technician, Biomedical Equipment Designer, Biomedical Program Manager, Research Engineer

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Lab

Career Interest Types: IRE - Investigative, Realistic, Enterprising

 

Clinical Data Manager – Mid-Level 

Accurately and efficiently collect and manage data from a variety of medical research projects, such as clinical or pharmaceutical trials. Analyze data closely to spot any trends, dangerous side effects, or other promising findings and present information in-person or with reports to upper management team or investors. May lead a team of other scientists, technicians, and data management professionals.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $30 - $45/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Analytical and Scientific Software 2) Management and Leadership 3) Medicine and Dentistry 4) Data Measurement and Analysis 5) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Director of Clinical Data Management (CDM), Clinical Informatics Manager, Project Data Manager, Clinical Lab Manager, Lead Data Manager

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Lab

Career Interest Types: CIE - Conventional, Investigative, Enterprising

 

Chemical Engineer – Mid-Level 

Research, design, and develop equipment and processes for manufacturing chemicals and products, such as pharmaceuticals, synthetic plastics, and food additives by applying knowledge and principles of chemistry, physics, and engineering. Troubleshoot problems with chemical manufacturing processes, equipment, and finished products to optimize performance or to ensure a safe, quality product.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $33 - $46/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Chemistry and Mathematics 2) Engineering and Technology 3) Complex Problem Solving 4) Research and Data Analysis 5) CAD or AutoCAD Software 6) Safety and Quality Control

Similar Roles/Titles: Chemical Development Engineer, Chemical Process Engineer, Research Engineer, Biochemical Engineer, Chemical Process Control

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Lab

Career Interest Types: IRE - Investigative, Realistic, Enterprising

 

Animal Scientist – Senior Level

Lead or conduct research covering the genetics, nutrition, reproduction, and development of animals, either individually or as part of a team of other scientists from various areas of study and specialization. May assist in preparing charts, reports, and other visual representations of research findings. May require advanced certification or professional license.

Typical Education/Training: Doctorate Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $28 - $42/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical Equipment and Software 2) Biology, Chemistry, and Physics 3) Advanced Mathematics and Measuring 4) Research and Data Analysis 5) Active Listening and Critical Thinking 6) Animal Behavior and Anatomy

Similar Roles/Titles: Animal Nutritionist, Livestock Animal Specialist, Animal Research and Development, Research Center Partner, Research Scientist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Lab

Career Interest Types: IRC - Investigative, Realistic, Conventional

 

Medical Scientist – Senior Level

Lead or conduct research covering the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of human diseases, injuries, or disorders and to improve health, either individually or as part of a team of other scientists from various areas of study and specialization. May assist in preparing charts, reports, and other visual representations of research findings. May require advanced certification or professional license.

Typical Education/Training: Doctorate Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $30 - $45/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Advanced Medicine and Dentistry 2) Medical Equipment and Software 3) Biology, Chemistry, and Physics 4) Advanced Mathematics and Data Analysis 5) Active Listening and Critical Thinking 6) Human Behavior and Anatomy

Similar Roles/Titles: Clinical Laboratory Scientist, Associate Director of Experimental Medicine, Laboratory Director, Research Scientist, Research Center Partner

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab

Career Interest Types: IRA - Investigative, Realistic, Artistic

 

Biochemist/Biophysicist – Senior Level

Research, document, and analyze the chemical composition, physical principles, electrical and mechanical energy, and other variables or aspects of living cells and organisms, individually or as a member of a team. May conduct or lead research to further the understanding of the metabolism, reproduction, growth, and heredity of living organisms. May require advanced certification or professional license.

Typical Education/Training: Doctorate Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $32 - $48/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Advanced Biology, Chemistry, & Physics 2) Advanced Mathematics and Technology 3) Complex Problem Solving 4) Research and Data Analysis 5) Analytical and Medical Software 6) Safety and Quality Control

Similar Roles/Titles: Research Chemist, Research Physicist, Biochemical Scientist, Research Engineer, Medical Physicist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab

Career Interest Types: IRE - Investigative, Realistic, Enterprising

 

Clinical Research Coordinator – Senior Level

Plan, oversee, or coordinate clinical research projects to ensure compliance with all appropriate rules, regulations, and protocols and to remain in line with overall clinical objectives. May assist in the evaluation and analysis of clinical data and report findings and additional recommendations to various audiences and business stakeholders. May require advanced certification or professional license.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $41 - $59/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Analytical and Scientific Software 2) Management and Leadership 3) Medicine and Dentistry 4) Biology, Chemistry, & Physics 5) Advanced Mathematics and Measuring 6) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

Similar Roles/Titles: Clinical Program Coordinator, Clinical Program Manager, Clinical Research Administrator, Clinical Research Associate (CRA), Research Manager

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab

Career Interest Types: EIC - Enterprising, Investigative, Conventional

 

HEALTH INFORMATICS & BUSINESS OPERATIONS – THE ADVISORS

Occupations from the Health Informatics & Business Operations family are involved in the fast-paced management of health science agencies, patient data and analytics, and overall business operations. The various hospitals, clinics, homes, centers, drug makers, and other support agencies that make up our complex modern health sciences industry need to be managed and marketed successfully by these professionals to remain viable in an increasingly competitive local and global marketplace.

Many of these occupations have limited direct interaction with patients, but some offer opportunities to interact by phone or online through various sales, marketing, and communication tools. New careers are also being created or further modified to assist in the marketing and support of these goods and services to current and potential customers, such as through social media and other interactive communication tools. Some sales, fundraising, or customer service roles may even offer the opportunity for increased revenue through performance-based compensation packages and incentives.

You may be good for these careers if you enjoy working with data, interacting with others to fix problems, and have a desire to understand how things and people operate. Some travel may be required, but most work will be likely conducted within an office, laboratory, or other commercial setting.

 

Career Spotlight:

Danielle H. – Community Relations Director at The Views Senior Living (Cedar Rapids, IA)

“My mom is in the health sciences field, so I wanted to do something similar and ended up working in therapeutic recreation before getting the chance to transition into my current role. I meet with and provide education to people wanting to learn more about senior living, which often involves providing tours and building relationships with those in our community. I enjoy working with our families and seeing our tenants thrive in a new environment. I also help design advertising campaigns through social media, TV, and online. I recommend exploring your options for working in health sciences. There is so much more than just doctors and nurses!”

 

Medical Office Specialist – Entry Level

Perform administrative or clerical duties for health science practitioners. Greet patients and visitors and assist with scheduling appointments, providing directions to locations within a facility, and answering phone calls or emails, ensuring the accurate and appropriate documentation, rerouting, or delivery of messages. May assist in recording and maintaining medical charts, reports, and other correspondence.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $14 - $24/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical and Dental Terminology 2) Active Listening and Critical Thinking 3) Clerical and Administrative Procedures 4) Computers and Electronics 5) Comprehend and Follow Instructions 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Administrative Assistant, Medical Secretary, Physician Office Specialist, Front Desk Clerk, Scheduling Assistant

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: CSI - Conventional, Social, Investigative

 

Medical Billing & Coding Specialist – Entry Level

Acts as the connection between health care providers, patients, support agencies, and insurance companies to ensure that all are billed correctly and in a timely manner. Read patient charts, medical histories, and other documentation to compile data, compute fees and charges, and prepare invoices. Maintain accurate records of transactions, sometimes assisting in providing additional documentation or information.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $14 - $26/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Accounting and Medical Software 2) Computers and Database Management 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Mathematics and Finance 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Attention to Detail

Similar Roles/Titles: Accounting Clerk, Billing Clerk, Billing Coordinator, Billing Specialist, Medical Coder

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community

Career Interest Types: CEI - Conventional, Enterprising, Investigative

 

Medical Transcriptionist – Entry Level

Document, translate, or transcribe medical reports recorded by physicians and other health practitioners using various electronic devices, covering visits to offices or emergency rooms, diagnostic or imaging tests, operations, chart reviews, and final summaries. Edit materials as necessary and return reports in either printed or electronic form for review and signature to ensure accuracy and completeness.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $15 - $27/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Medical and Word Processing Software 2) Computers and Database Management 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Medical and Dental Terminology 5) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 6) Attention to Detail

Similar Roles/Titles: Clinical Transcriptionist, Documentation Specialist, Medical Language Specialist, Medical Transcriber, Transcriptionist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: CRI - Conventional, Realistic, Investigative

 

Customer Service Representative – Entry Level

Interact with customers by phone, email, and online to provide information in response to inquiries about products and services. Handle, record, and resolve complaints when necessary, weighing the needs of the customer and the employer for long term growth and success. May work with billing and coding specialists, health care practitioners, and insurance providers to assist in resolving billing or payment issues.

Typical Education/Training: High School Diploma/HSED

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $15 - $28/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Customer and Personal Service 2) Problem Solving and Critical Thinking 3) Conflict Management and Resolution 4) Active Listening and Communication 5) Sales and Marketing 6) Social and Digital Media

Similar Roles/Titles: Customer Service Agent, Call Center Representative, Customer Care Representative, Patient Support Specialist, Member Services Representative

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: ESC - Enterprising, Social, Conventional

 

Sales Representative – Entry Level

Identify the needs of current and potential customers through direct and indirect interaction and research. Match customer needs with product offerings, negotiate sales, and train customers in the appropriate, safe, and legal uses of products and equipment. Estimate or quote prices, contract terms, warranties, and delivery dates. May assist with fundraising, marketing, and public relations duties.

Typical Education/Training: High School Diploma/HSED

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $16 - $39/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Sales and Negotiation 2) Communication and Interpersonal Skills 3) Social Media and Marketing 4) Problem Solving and Critical Thinking 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Computers and Technology

Similar Roles/Titles: Sales Associate, Pharmaceutical Sales, Marketing Representative, Technical Sales Representative, Medical Equipment Sales

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: ECS - Enterprising, Conventional, Social

 

Medical Records & Health Information Technician – Mid-Level

Collect, process, and maintain medical records of patients or residents in accordance with all appropriate medical, ethical, legal, and regulatory requirements. Ensure the completeness, accuracy, and quality of data entered into computer systems from paper-based filing systems or hand-written notes. May assist in the careful, private, and secure reviewing of health records and insurance claims.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $18 - $30/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Accounting and Medical Software 2) Computers and Database Management 3) Medical Billing & Coding 4) Active Listening and Communication 5) Documenting and Processing Information 6) Attention to Detail

Similar Roles/Titles: Health Information Clerk, Health Information Specialist, Medical Records Analyst, Medical Records Clerk, Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT)

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: CEI - Conventional, Enterprising, Investigative

 

Customer Service Supervisor – Mid-Level

Plan, direct, and coordinate the activities of customer service agents and other staff who interact with customers, personally handling complex or elevated cases and customer complaints. Assist in the training and professional development of new and existing employees. May also assist in reprimanding, implementing corrective action plans, and firing of problematic employees.

Typical Education/Training: Associate’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $20 - $34/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Customer and Personal Service 2) Conflict Management and Resolution 3) Management and Leadership 4) Active Listening and Communication 5) Sales and Negotiation 6) Social and Digital Media

Similar Roles/Titles: Administrative Supervisor, Patient Support Supervisor, Office Supervisor, Client Facing Supervisor, Customer Service Lead

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community

Career Interest Types: ESC - Enterprising, Social, Conventional

 

Marketing Specialist – Mid-Level

Research market conditions and gather information to determine potential sales of various health science products or services. Measure the effectiveness of marketing, advertising, and communications programs and strategies, including through social media and other digital marketing channels. Collect and analyze data on competitors, customers, pricing, sales, and methods of marketing and distribution.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $20 - $36/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Sales and Negotiation 2) Communication and Interpersonal Skills 3) Social Media and Marketing 4) Problem Solving and Critical Thinking 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Measuring and Analyzing Data

Similar Roles/Titles: Business Development Specialist, Communications Specialist, Market Analyst, Marketing Research Analyst, Digital Marketing Specialist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: IEC - Investigative, Enterprising, Conventional

 

Regulatory Affairs Specialist – Mid-Level

Assist in the coordination and documentation of regulatory processes designed to protect public health, such as internal audits, inspections, license renewals, or registrations for various medical products, pharmaceuticals, and devices. May directly observe or assist in quality assurance, safety procedures, and clinical trials. Compile and prepare materials for submission to regulatory agencies.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $20 - $35/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Evaluating Information and Compliance 2) Computers and Database Management 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Scientific and Medical Software 5) Safety and Quality Control 6) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

Similar Roles/Titles: QA Specialist, Quality Assurance Specialist, Regulatory Affairs Analyst, Regulatory Affairs Associate, Regulatory Services Consultant

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab

Career Interest Types: CEI - Conventional, Enterprising, Investigative

 

Database Administrator – Mid-Level

Administer, test, and implement computer databases to assist in the storage of sensitive and valuable data and medical records necessary to ensure the safe, accurate, and quality delivery of health care. Stay updated on advances in technology, cybersecurity needs, and industry trends to ensure data is safeguarded and private. May purchase and install new hardware or software equipment or components.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $28 - $42/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Database Management and Networking 2) Computers and Telecommunications 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 5) Analytical and Scientific Software 6) Data Collection and Analysis

Similar Roles/Titles: Data Architect, Patient Data Manager, Database Coordinator, Information Systems Manager, Management Information Systems (MIS) Director

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: CIA - Conventional, Investigative, Artistic

 

Regulatory Affairs Manager – Senior Level

Plan, direct, and coordinate the activities of regulatory staff to manage and document processes designed to protect public health. Collaborate with managers and directors of other departments involved in the continuous monitoring and improvement of quality assurance, safety procedures, and clinical trials. Oversee the submission of data and materials to regulatory agencies in a timely and efficient manner.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $29 - $48/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Evaluating Information and Compliance 2) Management and Leadership 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Scientific and Medical Software 5) Business Intelligence and Data Analysis 6) Safety and Quality Control

Similar Roles/Titles: QA Manager, Director of Quality Assurance, Director of Regulatory Affairs, Regulatory Affairs Lead, Regulatory Services Advisor

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: CEI - Conventional, Enterprising, Investigative

 

Health Care Administrator – Senior Level

Plan, manage, and oversee wide-ranging medical and health services for an entire health facility or center, a specific unit or department, or a medical practice for a group of physicians or other health science professionals, with the ultimate goal of ensuring their staff provide the most effective patient care possible, within all appropriate short and long-term budgetary, ethical, and regulatory measures or goals.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $30 - $49/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Management and Leadership 2) Computers and Database Management 3) Personnel and Human Resources 4) Active Listening and Communication 5) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 6) Business Intelligence and Data Analysis

Similar Roles/Titles: Medical and Health Services Manager, Clinic Director, Health Information Management Director, Director of Health Services, Practice Administrator

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: ECS - Enterprising, Conventional, Social

 

Public Relations & Fundraising Manager – Senior Level

Oversee the management and coordination of all public relations, customer service, and fundraising staff to maintain a positive public image. Plan, direct, and coordinate activities to solicit and maintain funds from donors, grants, and other public or private sources to create awareness, build rapport, and ensure the continued success of the organization. May assist in the hiring, training, and firing of related staff.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $31 - $54/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Management and Leadership 2) Contracts, Budgets, and Financial Models 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Marketing and Public Relations

Similar Roles/Titles: Director of Annual Giving, Communications Director, Community Relations Director, Public Affairs Director, Director of PR

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: EAS - Enterprising, Artistic, Social

 

Nursing Manager – Senior Level

Plan, direct, and coordinate the activities of all nursing staff within a facility or area of practice, including various advocacy, recruitment, and retention initiatives, in observation of all regulatory, ethical, budgetary, and legal regulations, policies, and procedures. May also collaborate with physicians, nurses, and other health professionals and specialists with advanced or complicated medical procedures.

Typical Education/Training: Master’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $32 – $56/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Management and Leadership 2) Personnel and Human Resources 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Advanced Medicine and Dentistry 5) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 6) Negotiation and Conflict Resolution

Similar Roles/Titles: Director of Nursing, Nursing Program Manager, Nursing Supervisor, Nursing Program Administrator, Practice Administrator

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: ECS - Enterprising, Conventional, Social

 

Computer & Information Systems Manager – Senior Level

Plan, manage, and oversee all computer or IT-based activities for an organization, such as electronic data processing, information systems, systems analysis, and computer programming. Research, recommend, and implement the purchase or improvement of related computer hardware, software, and programming needs to ensure the continued safe and private collection, transmittal, and storage of data.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $40 - $62/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Database Management and Networking 2) Computers and Information Management 3) Management and Leadership 4) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 5) Business Intelligence and Data Analysis 6) Engineering and Cybersecurity

Similar Roles/Titles: Computing Services Director, Data Processing Manager, Information Systems Director, IT Manager, Management Information Systems (MIS) Director

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: ECI - Enterprising, Conventional, Investigative

 

HOSPITALITY & FACILITY MANAGEMENT – THE MAINTAINERS

Occupations in the Hospitality & Facility Management family offer some direct, but mostly indirect interaction with patients or the public to provide an orderly, safe, and clean environment for the seamless and successful delivery of health care services. They are often the unseen forces that keep the day-to-day business and operations running behind-the-scenes.

Equipment, machinery, and an environment that are not properly maintained are not only dangerous and costly to operate, but can also negatively impact the ability for patients, staff, and visitors to focus, relax, and heal. Behind every doctor, nurse, and health care specialist is a team of staff dedicated to ensuring their safety and security while at work. They keep things running smoothly so health care professionals can offer the best possible service more quickly and efficiently.

These occupations are great for someone who enjoys working with their hands, likes to see and feel the results of their hard work, and has a good attention to detail. The dedication and skills of these professionals keep the health care system running, patients satisfied, and businesses profitable. These occupations offer a great opportunity for entry into the field and hands-on experience without more extensive or specialized health care training.

Career Spotlight:

Edward H. – Exercise Therapist at Opportunities Unlimited (Sioux City, IA)

“I was introduced to this field by my aunt, who has been a CNA for over 25 years. When my dad suffered a stroke in 2007, I decided to take a job at Opportunities Unlimited, a brain injury rehabilitation center. After 11 years and additional brain injury education and training, I’m still here as an Exercise Therapist. Each day I see 30-35 individuals to work on exercise goals, such as improving range of motion and strength or taking them out into the community to work on necessary life and work skills. I enjoy the challenge and learning something new every day. I plan to further my training on brain injuries and want to continue to be a role model for my boys by teaching them how to be caring, respectful, and honest men.”

Animal Caretaker – Entry Level

Feed, water, groom, exercise, and care for pets, companion animals, and other non-farm animals, such as dogs, cats, fish, reptiles, and birds. Keep records of feedings, medical treatments, and the receipt or discharge of animals. Clean, disinfect, and repair cages, pens, or fish tanks in accordance with all animal safety laws, rules, and regulations. With advanced training, may assist in some minor medical procedures.

Typical Education/Training: High School Diploma/HSED

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $11 - $17/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Animal Behavior and Care 2) Patience and Attention to Detail 3) Active Listening and Communication 4) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 5) Animal Safety Laws and Regulations 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Animal Care Technician, Pet Groomer/Stylist, Kennel Attendant, Kennel Technician, Pet Daycare Worker

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: RCS - Realistic, Conventional, Social

 

Food Service Worker – Entry Level

Plan, prepare, and serve or deliver meals to individuals, sometimes with special dietary needs and restrictions. Maintain a clean work environment based on local and national food safety standards, rules, and regulations. May assist in the cooking or re-heating of pre-made food items and selling food items to patients and visitors by using equipment such as price scanners, cash registers, and credit card readers.

Typical Education/Training: High School Diploma/HSED

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $12 - $18/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Food Preparation and Service 2) Measuring and Cooking 3) Comprehend and Follow Instructions 4) Food Equipment and Operation 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Food Quality and Safety Control

Similar Roles/Titles: Food Server, Dietary Aide, Food Service Assistant, Food Service Specialist, Preparation Cook

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community

Career Interest Types: CRE - Conventional, Realistic, Enterprising

 

Shuttle and Delivery Driver – Entry Level

Transport health care patients, visitors, and residents and/or medical supplies, equipment, and other packages safely and in accordance with all transportation rules, laws, and regulations. May assist elderly, injured, or disabled passengers in safely boarding or exiting vehicles. Vehicle size and length of routes may require specialized license or certification, such as a commercial driver’s license (CDL).

Typical Education/Training: High School Diploma/HSED

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $12 - $18/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Transportation Safety and Laws 2) Patient and Supplies Delivery 3) GPS and Route Logging Technology 4) Comprehend and Follow Instructions 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Time and Route Management

Similar Roles/Titles: Shuttle Bus Driver, Patient Transport Driver, Patient Access Driver, Concierge Driver, Delivery Driver

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: CRI - Conventional, Realistic, Investigative

 

Housekeeping & Laundry Worker – Entry Level 

Perform cleaning, laundry, and related duties to maintain a clean, safe, and orderly environment. Duties may include making beds, washing clothes, cleaning rooms or halls, and mopping. May operate related equipment or machinery to wash, dry-clean, vacuum, or steam treat various types of garments, fabrics, flooring, and wall coverings, alerting maintenance or health care staff to repair needs.

Typical Education/Training: High School Diploma/HSED

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $12 - $19/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Cleaning and Housekeeping 2) Laundry Care and Techniques 3) Measuring and Machine Operation 4) Time and Project Management 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Comprehend and Follow Instructions

Similar Roles/Titles: Maid, Cleaning Crew, Laundry Assistant, Laundry Attendant, Maintenance Assistant

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community

Career Interest Types: RCE - Realistic, Conventional, Enterprising

 

Cook – Entry Level

Plan, prepare, and cook meals for individuals, sometimes in large quantities and in accordance with special dietary needs and restrictions. Maintain a clean work environment based on local and national food safety and quality standards, rules, and regulations. May work individually or as part of a team of other cooks, dietitians, food service, and health care workers.

Typical Education/Training: High School Diploma/HSED

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $14 - $20/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Cooking and Baking 2) Food Preparation and Service 3) Food Equipment and Operation 4) Customer and Personal Service 5) Food Quality and Safety Control 6) Comprehend and Follow Instructions

Similar Roles/Titles: Lead Cook, Dietary Cook, Chef, Cafeteria Cook, Food and Nutrition Services Assistant

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community

Career Interest Types: RCE - Realistic, Conventional, Enterprising

 

Maintenance Worker – Entry Level

Assists in keeping machines, medical equipment, facilities, or building grounds repaired and in safe working order. Diagnose mechanical, structural, or safety problems and determine how to correct them by checking blueprints, repair manuals, technical journals, or parts catalogs. Assist other maintenance and cleaning staff to ensure compliance with health care environmental, air, and noise quality standards.

Typical Education/Training: High School Diploma/HSED

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 0 - 3 years

Wage Range: $15 - $23/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Building Maintenance and Construction 2) Comprehend and Follow Instructions 3) Mechanical and Medical Tools 4) Machine Maintenance and Repair 5) Safety Regulations and Procedures 6) Hazardous Materials & Disposal

Similar Roles/Titles: Maintenance Crew, Custodian, Janitor, Repair Technician, Maintenance Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: RCI - Realistic, Conventional, Investigative

 

Beauty & Cosmetology Specialist – Mid-Level

Provide a wide range of beauty services to residents and patients of health care services, such as shampooing, cutting, and styling hair; massaging and treating the head, hands, and feet; and applying various cosmetics and beauty products to improve physical appearance and overall well-being. Duties may include advanced dermatology, hair removal, and therapeutic massage techniques or procedures.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $12 - $25/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Cosmetology and Beauty Science 2) Hair Cutting, Styling, and Trimming Tools 3) Cosmetics and Beauty Supplies 4) Skin Care and Massage 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Sales and Marketing

Similar Roles/Titles: Beautician, Hairdresser, Stylist, Beauty Consultant, Personal Services Attendant

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice

Career Interest Types: AES - Artistic, Enterprising, Social

 

Fitness & Activities Instructor – Mid-Level 

Lead the instruction or coaching of individual or group activities to improve physical fitness, mental sharpness, and overall well-being. Demonstrate proper techniques and form to customers and explain corrective measures necessary to improve. Maintain a safe and welcoming environment for all to learn and grow. May assist in the design or updating of exercise routines, general entertainment, or other activities.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $12 - $18/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Physical Fitness and Wellness 2) Education and Training 3) Customer and Personal Service 4) Safety Regulations and Procedures 5) Time and Project Management 6) Psychology and Human Behavior

Similar Roles/Titles: Aerobics Instructor, Wellness Specialist, Recreational Fitness Trainer, Group Exercise Instructor, Activities Specialist

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: SRE - Social, Realistic, Enterprising

 

Medical Equipment Technician – Mid-Level 

Prepare, sterilize, install, and clean machines, equipment, or other technology used in laboratories, residential living facilities, and other health care settings. May also assist scientists and other support staff with routine laboratory tasks and the operation or inspection of equipment, making minor adjustments or repairs as needed to maintain a high level of safety, accuracy, and performance at all times.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $18 - $29/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Mechanical Tools and Equipment 2) Safety and Quality Control 3) Comprehend and Deliver Instructions 4) Medical Terminology and Testing 5) Customer and Personal Service 6) Measuring and Evaluating Machinery

Similar Roles/Titles: Medical Equipment Preparer, Medical Equipment Repairer, Central Service Technician (CST), Instrument Technician, Sterile Preparation Technician

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: RCI - Realistic, Conventional, Investigative

 

Maintenance Supervisor – Mid-Level 

Directly supervise and coordinate the activities of the maintenance, grounds keeping, and housekeeping staff within a health care, residential living, or commercial support facility. Plan, lead, and teach new team members regarding new or improved equipment, procedures, or safety and regulatory standards. Create or read maintenance reports and propose updates or recommendations.

Typical Education/Training: Technical Certificate/Diploma

Registered Apprenticeship: Yes

Work Experience: 4 - 7 years

Wage Range: $19 - $31/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Building Maintenance and Construction 2) Comprehend and Deliver Instructions 3) Management and Leadership 4) Mechanical Tools and Equipment 5) Mathematics and Measuring 6) Safety Regulations and Procedures

Similar Roles/Titles: Facilities Manager, Facility Maintenance Supervisor, Maintenance Foreman, Maintenance Manager, Housekeeping Supervisor

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community, Home

Career Interest Types: ECR - Enterprising, Conventional, Realistic

 

Fitness & Activities Coordinator – Senior Level 

Plan, direct, and coordinate medically-approved recreation, fitness, and wellness programs for patients and residents. Activities may include sports, field trips, theater, social activities, or arts and crafts. May consultant with class instructors to assess patient conditions and recommend additional activities or services. Manage and train staff of health educators, fitness instructors, and other support staff.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $26 - $43/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Therapy & Counseling 2) Management and Leadership 3) Personnel and Human Resources 4) Event & Activities Planning 5) Active Listening and Communication 6) Time and Project Management

Similar Roles/Titles: Activities Director, Wellness Coordinator, Recreational Therapist, Fitness & Wellness Director, Residential Activities Director

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Community

Career Interest Types: SAE - Social, Artistic, Enterprising

 

Director of Operations – Senior Level 

Plan, direct, and coordinate the general operations of a health sciences organization, center, or facility. Communicate work policies, manage daily operations, review financial statements or performance data, and plan the use of materials and human resources to keep day-today operations running smoothly and profitable. Oversee the hiring, training, and firing of staff and assist in regulatory compliance measures.

Typical Education/Training: Bachelor’s Degree

Registered Apprenticeship: No

Work Experience: 8+ years

Wage Range: $30 - $62/hour

Knowledge & Skills: 1) Management and Leadership 2) Critical Thinking and Problem Solving 3) Data and Systems Analysis 4) Health Care Processes and Procedures 5) Safety Regulations and Procedures 6) Customer and Personal Service

Similar Roles/Titles: Maintenance Manager, Facility Manager, Operations Manager, Facilities Manager, Site Superintendent

Typical Work Environments: Hospital, Center, Office, Clinic, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Hospice, Lab, Community

Career Interest Types: ECS - Enterprising, Conventional, Social

 

ADDITIONAL CAREER OPTIONS – There is a career for everyone in health sciences!

Don’t see a career you like? This document is not meant to cover every possible career option in the health sciences industry in Iowa, so don’t worry if you don’t see something that immediately grabs your attention or seems to match your career interest type. In addition to the many specializations discussed in the “Customized Career Opportunities” section, there are also a wide range of complementary or supplementary career options available that are necessary for all types of businesses, regardless of industry, size, or location. Below are just a few examples of where you might also fit within this exciting and fulfilling industry:

INTEGRATIVE AND HOLISTIC MEDICINE – Occupations that involve the use of treatments, philosophies, and techniques that take into account the whole person. Practitioners work in a therapeutic partnership with patients to help address physical, emotional, mental, social, spiritual, and environmental influences that affect a person’s health in partnership with traditional Western medicine techniques.

ACUPUNCTURISTS, CHIROPRACTORS, HEALING TOUCH PRACTITIONERS, HERBALISTS, HOMEOPATHISTS, AND MASSAGE THERAPISTS

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY – A wide range of careers that focus on the use of computers and other technology to receive, store, transmit, and work with different types of information and data.

COMPUTER PROGRAMMERS, CYBER SECURITY ANALYSTS, NETWORK ENGINEERS, HELP DESK SUPPORTS, GRAPHIC DESIGNERS, AND WEB DEVELOPERS.

HUMAN RESOURCES – Those in charge of overseeing various aspects of employment for a company, such as recruitment, employee benefits, and compliance with labor laws.

HIRING MANAGERS, BENEFITS COORDINATORS, TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT SPECIALISTS, PAYROLL ADMINISTRATORS, HEALTH AND SAFETY SUPPORT, AND RECRUITERS.

ADMINISTRATIVE AND FINANCIAL SERVICES – A group of support careers that assist in the day-to-day operations of a successful company, such as keeping track of finances, monitoring government regulations, and administrative support to other departments.

ACCOUNTANTS, FINANCIAL ANALYSTS, ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANTS, HEALTH INSURANCE UNDERWRITERS, AND SUPPORT CLERKS.

SKILLED & MECHANICAL TRADES – Buildings and facilities take a lot of time and work to maintain, so companies sometimes employ specialized workers or contractors to keep a facility properly maintained and running smoothly.

PLUMBERS, ELECTRICIANS, HEATING AND AIR CONDITIONING TECHNICIANS, CONSTRUCTION WORKERS, AND INDUSTRIAL PAINTERS.

EXECUTIVE MANAGEMENT – A team of individuals at the highest level of management of an organization who oversee the mission, vision, and general tasks of managing an organization.

PRESIDENTS, VICE PRESIDENTS, CHIEF OPERATIONS OFFICERS (COO), CHIEF INFORMATION OFFICERS (CIO), AND CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICERS (CEO).

NEXT STEPS & PLANNING RECOMMENDATIONS

This document was meant to begin the conversation about the great career opportunities available in the health sciences industry in Iowa. Below are some additional recommendations for next steps readers can take to continue their career exploration journey. Utilize the basic career exploration plan and notes sections of the next few pages to begin putting thought into action. Links have been provided to help guide readers to additional online resources.

STUDENTS AND JOB SEEKERS

FUTURE READY IOWA CAREER COACH – The free interactive Career Coach tool at FutureReadyIowa.gov is a great way for students and job seekers of all ages to learn more about their career interests and research specific occupations in health sciences, including the ability to customize labor market information, education offerings, and employer listings to their specific geographic location.

VOLUNTEER, JOB SHADOWS, OR TOURS – Contact an employer directly to ask questions, learn about current openings, and to request either a site tour or job shadow opportunity for a better idea of what it would be like to work for them. Internships and volunteering are also great opportunities to earn experience, build up a resume, and test out a career before making any long-term and expensive career decisions. Consult with counselors and educators for local opportunities or visit VolunteerIowa.org to search for additional openings.

EARN SKILLS AND CERTIFICATIONS – Many careers in this industry will rely on some foundational skills and certifications that can be earned relatively easily and affordably by students and job seekers proactively before entering the workforce. Some schools even have dual-enrollment or pre-apprenticeship agreements that allow students to earn college credit and even full work certifications before graduating, such as CNA or CMA. Having these skills, experience, and certifications will increase your chances of landing a great job compared to others who have not taken any such action to improve themselves.

EMPLOYERS, EDUCATORS, AND COMMUNITY SUPPORT PARTNERS

WORK-BASED LEARNING INTERMEDIARY NETWORK – The Intermediary Network is made up of 15 regional networks that serve as a single one-stop point of contact by connecting businesses and schools with work-based learning opportunities. These can include job shadows, internships, site tours, guest speakers, and educator externships. Contact your regional Intermediary and access the Work-Based Learning Guide to learn more about setting up a successful local work-based learning experience. With adult supervision and appropriate privacy and safety measures, youth under the age of 18 can work in this industry.

IOWA STEM TEACHER EXTERNSHIPS – Teachers across Iowa have the opportunity to take advantage of an externship program, where during the summer, they work side-by-side with knowledgeable and skilled health science professionals who help bring the classroom curriculum to life. Teacher Externships are full-time, six-week temporary summer positions in local businesses and agencies for secondary teachers of mathematics, science, and/or technology. Teachers earn a stipend of up to $4,800 (including two days of professional development), as well as one graduate credit through the University of Northern Iowa’s Continuing Education program. Teacher Externships provide educators with the exposure to answer questions about real-world application, prepare students for careers they may have in the future, and improve educational experiences. Visit IowaSTEM.gov/externships to learn more and apply for these great opportunities.

SECTOR PARTNERSHIPS AND BOARDS – Employers, educators, and other community support partners can take a more active role in training and developing their local workforce by meeting to collaborate on local education, economic, and community issues. These employer-led groups are often referred to as sector partnerships or sector boards. There are currently over 60 of them spread throughout Iowa, with a growing number devoted exclusively to health sciences. More information, group locations, contact information, and resources can be found at SectorPartnerships.EducateIowa.gov.

*Disclaimer: This product does not necessarily reflect the official position of the Iowa Department of Education. The Iowa Department of Education makes no guarantees, warranties, or assurances of any kind, express or implied, with respect to such information or its completeness, timeliness, usefulness, adequacy, continued availability, or ownership. This product is copyrighted by the Iowa Department of Education. Internal use by any organization and/or personal use by an individual for noncommercial purposes is permissible. All other uses require prior authorization. Revisions and/or corrections made when necessary.

Printed from the Iowa Department of Education website on July 05, 2020 at 6:39pm.