Two big trends are defining the jobs that will show the most work opportunities from 2010 to 2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The first is population growth. More persons mean more potential customers who will require the services of more workers. The second is the aging of the baby-boomers, who form one of the largest segments of the U.S. population. As they become more elderly, they will need more medical treatment and help with activities, providing opportunities for those in the healthcare and helping professions.
The profession that will benefit most from these trends belongs to registered nurses, whose numbers are expected to increase by 711,000 to a total 3.5 million. They assist doctors in providing medical care but also have the training to provide some diagnosis and treatment on their own. The job requires one of three types of education: a diploma, associate degree or bachelor’s degree.
Jobs for retail salespersons are expected to increase by 706,000 to a total 4.9 million. These workers sell goods, such as furniture, toys and cars, in retail stores. They help answer customer questions, locate items for purchase, and in some cases, tally the bought goods and accept payment. In general, salespeople do not need training to enter their profession. Most learn on the job although some employers provide formal classes. The job can be a stepping-stone to management or other careers, particularly in retail chains.
Home Health Aides
Home health aides assist the chronically sick, disabled or elderly with such tasks as dressing, housework and doctors’ appointments. Work opportunities will grow by 706,300 to a total 1.7 million. Aides usually work for certified agencies that receive government funding and so must meet standards of competence. No advanced education is necessary because they receive training from their employers. Many can provide basic medical services such as checking vital signs or changing dressings.
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