Best Two Year Degrees
You don’t have to go to a four-year university to own a business, follow your dream, get a job or find a career. If your tolerance for school will only last two years, but you’re willing to work hard, check out these associate degree jobs you can pursue with two year degrees.
Associate Degree Jobs
Andrea Deitz Smith, 28, co-owns Deitz Salon and Wellness Center with her sister, Tiffany Deitz Michael, 30, in Lexington, N.C. Smith majored in cosmetology at Davidson County Community College (davidsonccc.edu) with the intent to open her own business. Michael earned an associate degree in massage therapy after earning a four-year university degree.
At their salon, customers pour in for haircuts, massages, facials, manicures, pedicures, and makeovers from cosmetologists, estheticians and nail technicians.
If you prefer to work with kids instead of adults, a community college can help you prepare for work in a childcare facility.
Catie Webster was recently director of the Westside Family YMCA Child Care Center in Gates, N.Y., and had an associate degree.
As the center’s director, she hired and scheduled staff, ensured a safe environment for the children and answered parents’ questions. Like many associate degree jobs, hers kept her learning constantly. “I am continually attending child development trainings or classes to keep myself up to date on child development, curriculum, improving staff morale/communication, best practices for recruiting and much more,” she says. “Realize that you have a parent’s most precious gift, and nothing is more important than ensuring that family the best quality care.”
If you have an eye for design, community colleges are hot spots for interior design majors, who organize living, work and play spaces to be efficient and pleasing to the eye.
Graphic design and desktop publishing are two other careers that you can train for with a two-year degree at a community college or art institute.
“We have students working in schools, advertising agencies, for any business that has a Web site or a Web design company,” says Professor Susan De Castro, coordinator of Touro College’s Desktop and Web Publishing departments.
“In the print area, jobs can range from working for local businesses to working for a large advertising agency. Every company today needs some kind of in-house designer.”
And don’t forget the food.
Tim Melton is a student at the Oregon Culinary Institute, where his 10-month certificate program is preparing him to work as a line chef after graduation and open his own restaurant in the future.
“It makes me feel good knowing what I thought would be fun and a cool thing to do really is,” Melton says. “It’s fulfilling when you do the work you’re supposed to do, it looks beautiful, tastes fantastic, and you couldn’t have done that a month ago.”
There are many associate degree jobs. Choosing the best two year degrees can land you a great job in half the time. There are two year degrees for fire science, computer systems administration and nursing. Thinking about a legal career? Paralegals do research, draft memos and legal forms, interview witnesses and may participate in trials—and get their education through community colleges, too.
To discover the best two year degrees and more associate degree jobs, visit nextSTEPmag.com/careers.