Learn About Career Training for People Changing Their Careers

Certificate programs may be the best way to change your career. These types of programs typically take less time to complete than a standard Bachelor’s degree. 

Certificate programs and other short-term career training programs also cover a great deal of information in a narrow field, so that you may master the subject and begin working as soon as possible.

Online certificate programs may offer you more flexibility, especially if you want to keep your job while you are enrolled in a program. However, even the best online certificate programs require you to attend in-person labs. An in-person program may also be a more immersive experience and give you a chance to work directly with your instructors. 

As a career changer, you may be looking for a program that does not require you to start from scratch. In other words, your transition may be easier if you can use some of the skills you have already learned from a previous career. 

If you are looking to enter an entirely different field, it is not impossible. Your career training program may take more time, but you may gain a sense of fulfillment in your new career. Learn more about the different career paths available to you in the sections below. 

Pharmacy Technician

Pharmacy technician career training does not require a long-term commitment. In fact, most programs for entry-level positions may be completed in one year or less.

A pharmacy technician works directly with a pharmacist and helps him or she fill out prescriptions, consults with medical professionals and customers, mix medicines, label items, gives instructions for prescriptions and operate the cashier. 

Pharmacy tech training for a certificate or a diploma typically takes a year, unless you complete an accelerated course online. Career training for a pharmacy technician associate degree usually takes at least two years, assuming you are enrolled full-time. 

If you are looking for an affordable solution, consider attending a public community college in your state. The average certificate program costs between $1,500 and $5,000, which is far less than a bachelor’s degree or master’s program.  

An associate degree for pharmacy technician school may cost between $8,000 and $25,000, though you may be eligible for a higher-ranking position when you graduate. 

The average salary for a pharmacy technician is $16.13 per hour. 

Cosmetology School

Cosmetology school, or beauty school, teaches students about beauty treatments and how to perform those beauty treatments on customers. There are many different fields of cosmetology, including:

  • Hairstyling.
  • Hair coloring and hair perms.
  • Nail care and manicures.
  • Cosmetic skincare.
  • Photo and movie styling.
  • Makeup.

You may enroll in a cosmetology school online if you require more flexibility in your schedule and want to save money. However, you will still need to complete a certain number of credit hours gaining hands-on experience. 

You may also attend cosmetology classes to learn about a management position. For instance, you may want to become a salon owner, coordinator, manager or consultant. There are also training courses in cosmetology for beauty magazine writers and editors, beauty product designers, research chemists and more.

Cosmetologist salaries vary greatly depending on a person’s expertise. A barber, for instance, may make approximately $29,900 each year. A celebrity makeup artist, on the other hand, may earn an average annual salary of $85,930.

Dental Assistant

A dental assistant is important to the overall functionality of a dentist’s office. He or she may assist inpatient care or perform more of the behind-the-scenes work by maintaining the office schedule or completing laboratory duties. 

The tasks you perform will depend on your credentials, though other common duties include: 

  • sterilizing instruments. 
  • Preparing a treatment room.
  • Discussing treatment options with patients. 
  • Taking and developing radiographs, or x-rays.
  • Taking impressions and vital signs.
  • Assisting a dentist with all aspects of a dental procedure.

Dental assistant school may be the perfect career change opportunity if you are interested in science, oral health and medicine and have excellent problem-solving and communication skills. You will also have the chance to move up in your career and become an office manager, research associate, dental laboratory technologist and more. 

Dental assistant programs usually last one to two years if you are enrolled full-time. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, dental assistants earned an average of $35,390 in 2014. Salaries typically increase depending on experience and education.

Personal Trainer

A personal training certification may help you turn a lifelong commitment to fitness into a full-fledged career. Personal training may be a good career for you if you enjoy helping others, love fitness and want to learn more about the human body. 

Becoming a personal trainer allows you to work one on one with your clients and feel a sense of fulfillment when your clients are successful and motivated to improve. You will also have a certain level of flexibility in your schedule.

You may also use personal training to become a fitness instructor or health writer, opening the door to finding more job opportunities

A personal trainer certification program may be completed in less than a year. Some programs may take you six to eight weeks to complete, while others may take four to six months. The length also depends on whether you enroll in an online course, self-study program or an all-inclusive program.

While personal trainer school may become expensive, especially if you participate in an all-inclusive course, you are more likely to earn a higher income once you take your exams and earn your certifications. 


An EMT training program may be the right path for you if you want to help people, take part in an extremely important job and begin a career in healthcare. In fact, many EMTs go on to become paramedics, nurses and more. 

As an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), you will be a first responder in emergency medical situations. While the job may be stressful, you will never have a boring day and you will help save lives. EMTs are also in high demand, which means you may have no difficulty finding a job after you complete your career training.

In order to enroll in EMT classes, you must have a high school diploma, a General Educational Development (GED) certificate or an associate’s degree from an EMT program. Additionally, your immunizations must be up to date. 

Most EMT programs take two years to complete, and the curriculum is extensive. A program may cost between $200 and $2,000 depending on the length of the program and whether the school is a public or private institution. The median annual salary for an EMT is $32,670, and the salary may increase based on experience and education level.

Regardless of which career training program you decide to start, having one of these to make your resume more appealing will improve your chances of finding work in a new field.