When people think of a rewarding career today, they often think that they must complete a college degree. However, as we have seen with the modern marketplace and changes in technology over the last few decades, those four years of higher education may not be as useful anymore. There are many jobs (and high-paying ones at that) where certification is all you need to get started! And with seven certificates on this list - your next paycheck can't come soon enough!
1. Web Developer
Web developers are in high demand in the era where most businesses are shifting to digital, and the internet has become a crucial part of life. If you’re looking for an edge to help make yourself marketable, consider becoming certified as a Web Developer by either the International Association of Online Professionals or a Web Development Certificate from various educational organizations.
While it might seem easy enough to learn these skills yourself without paying money for instruction, many employers see going through training like these programs instead of relying on self-study as a sign of commitment and have a broader knowledge background.
2. HVAC Technician
An HVAC technician is an excellent certification to have, considering it is one of the most in-demand careers in America. HVAC technicians can make an average salary of $60k with just a high school diploma and some on-the-job training or make about $92k with a four-year degree from a community college or university!
For people that are interested in becoming certified as an HVAC technician, there are many programs such as:
• Air Conditioning Service Apprenticeship Program (ASAP)
• Nationally Recognized Construction Career Training Programs for Women (NRCW)
• ASEP - Automotive Service Excellence Professionals Certification Program.
Programs give students hands on experience working on equipment. It is also crucial for HVAC technicians to understand how to read and use schematics as they will encounter a range of products from different manufacturers. They need to interpret manuals and trouble shoot problems when repairing or installing air conditioning units, furnaces, refrigerators, dishwashers, washer/dryer combinations, and other appliances with cooling coils. For example, as explained at phyxter.ai/blog/understanding-ohms-law-wheel, understanding Ohms Law can help you determine what's wrong with your machine by looking at electrical usage.
3. Database Administrator
In the era where more company files are online and hacking has become a significant concern, the need for Database Administrators has increased. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that this specialization will grow by 12% from 2016 to 2026, which is much faster than average and is one of the highest-paying certifications on my list!
Database Administrator programs teach people how to manage corporate servers or data on the cloud so staff can access critical data. They learn how to maintain and protect databases from hackers trying to steal personal information like social security numbers and credit card info. They also help control access so that only authorized personnel can view sensitive data while others have restricted access based on company policies.
4. Software Developer
Software development positions have been one of the most in-demand jobs for quite some time, and now, they are finally starting to pay more than average. Forbes published an article stating that software developers make $69K a year on average, with their highest earners making over $130k. The job usually requires a bachelor's degree or higher and about four years of experience (including internships), but a number of certification programs exist. Software development is more complicated than web design and programs are longer. It is important to look at what programming languages you will be taught (many programs use Java, Python or C/C#/C++). However, once you have learned one language, future languages come much faster.
5. Civil Engineering Technician
A civil engineer technician is someone who has a certification or degree in civil engineering and usually take on tasks like surveying, construction management, and building site supervision. Civil Engineering Technicians made about $51,000 per year as of 2017. If you take the certification program from the Association of Civil Engineering Technicians, you'll receive a nationally recognized designation. Much of the learning is on the job, so you can use your certification to apply for apprentice civil engineering jobs or technician positions.
6. Certified Nursing Assistant
The health sector is constantly booming and the demand for nursing assistants is high and only growing. A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) will care for patients in various healthcare environments like hospitals, long-term facilities, home health agencies, and rehabilitation centers. CNAs are responsible for everything from medication management to the administration of treatments. To be a CNA, you'll want experience working with patients as an orderly, support staff member or other position in medicine. Programs include experience in a clinical setting to gain hands on experience.
You can become certified by taking classes through your local hospital association or community college, followed by passing both written exams given by the National Association for Practical Nurse Education & Services (NAPNES).
7. Massage Therapist
The need for relaxation in the hectic modern world is at an all-time high. People have many responsibilities, with careers, family, and hobbies to keep them busy every day.
Massage therapy can be more than just a relaxing experience for people; it has been shown to help relieve stress levels in your body by improving blood flow and easing muscle tension. If you're considering starting up massage therapy as a career, this could be one way that you will enjoy work daily helping clients while still earning a good living.
Becoming a massage therapist, however, requires training and certification. A certification program will teach you both the theory and the practice required to become a licensed massage therapist in your state.
This article suggested a few certification programs that may be a good fit for you. All of them offer good pay and interesting career opportunities. While you may be hesitant to commit to a certification program and worry about completing the requirements, these programs are often a less risky way to get started on a career. Many can be completed part time. Some are online while others are available from a school nearby. If you have not gone to college, this may be a way to find the career for you without spending four or more years in college trying to find out if you like your major. For those already in the workforce, you may find pursuing these certifications will help you secure a new job or advance in your field.