People, Data, Ideas or Things?
Vocational testing often given in high school and college helps differentiate an individual's ability to work best with people, data, ideas, or things. Those who test well in working with people are encouraged to consider a career that features helping others. Positions can be found in health care, teaching, social work, psychology, rehabilitation, and religion as well as leadership and human development positions in business and industry. Most of these positions, however, require a minimum of four years of college and may require as many as twelve years of education plus continuing education once in a professional position.
In interviewing applicants for graduate school, I often would ask "Why do you want to prepare for this career in health care, rehabilitation, or education?" Frequently the response was: "Because I want to help people."
Having the desire to spend a life time of service to others is a beginning step. Next consider your attributes and what is involved in being a helping professional. Do you have some of the attributes that are needed in one of these helping professions? These include Objectivity, Respect for others, Belief that people can change, Compassion, Honesty, Reliability, Self-Discipline, Discreetness, Self-Knowledge. If so, consider entering one of the helping professions.
A professional is an individual who has completed formal education and acquired professional certification and/or state licensure to practice a specific occupation or vocation.
The helping professions is a name given to a group of occupations whose focus is on helping people solve problems or overcome difficulties ranging from physical to spiritual and from financial to legal. Here are sample career options:
Professional status involves the following: