Advice for Changing Careers

I graduated from college in 2001 with a liberal arts degree. I now work as a Disability Claims Specialist but I definitely would rather be in another field that is more rewarding and also give me more of a feeling of self accomplishment and professionalism.

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I have always enjoyed working with the elderly and would love to see what opportunities are out there for me, but don't know where to start. I would like to go back to school too, but right now I just want to start setting goals and do the work to achieve them. Can anyone help, or point me in the right direction? I would be very appreciative.

By zimmerman615 from Philadelphia, PA

May 5, 20090 found this helpful

Have you tried your local Council on Aging? I know that a lot of communities have needs, some may just be for volunteers, but that could give you an idea. There are also positions here called 'ombudsmen'---they are people that advocate for the elderly in the nursing homes. If there are complaints that don't seem to be solved, they help intervene. I am not sure what they pay, but you can't lose by asking.

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May 11, 20090 found this helpful

Perhaps you could find work in a therapy or rehabilitation center. You might enjoy being a physical therapist assistant (less school time required than being a P.T.), an occupational therapist assistant, or a recreational therapist. Working w/these folks will help you decide for or against a career in one of those fields, or in lieu of a paying job, you could always volunteer!

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May 12, 20090 found this helpful

You might also contact hospice care to see if they have needs for volunteers. If you do go back to school and are considering a long-term degree, I'd suggest a Masters in counseling or a Masters in Social Work (so you could be a geriatric therapist, maybe through a hospital or hospice care), or perhaps get a degree that would allow you to become a nursing home administrator.

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