One Year Career Plans

731

See how the right certificate program could prepare you to pursue new opportunities.

By Jennifer Berry

Do you hate your job? Feeling like you're stuck in a work rut?

If you want to get a fresh career start in a different field, consider the quick preparation that a certificate program could offer. Many could be completed in one year or less - depending on your course load and program, - making it a smart, time-efficient option if you want to prepare to transition to a new career quickly.

[Click to find the right Certificate program for you]

Whether you want to transition to a career in culinary arts, health care, design, or law, a certificate program could help you gain relevant skills.

Keep reading to see eight certificate options.

#1: Medical Billing and Coding Certificate
Education time: About six months to one year, on average.*

As a medical biller and coder, you would get to interact with doctors and other health care professionals to clarify diagnoses. Also part of this profession: collecting and organizing patient health information. To help prepare for this career, look into medical billing and coding certificate programs.

Average earning potential: The average annual wage for medical billers and coders is $33,880. The highest ten percent in this occupation average at $51,510.**

[Find Medical Billing and Coding Near You]

#2: Medical Assisting Certificate
Education time: About one year, on average.*

Medical assistants help with the day-to-day tasks in the doctor's office, often scheduling appointments and taking patient's medical histories. If you want to get into this career, now is a great time. The U.S. Department of Labor ranked medical assistants as one of the fastest growing occupations from 2008-2018. To help prepare for this type of work, consider enrolling in a medical assisting certificate program.

Average earning potential: Medical assistants have a mean annual wage of $29,450, with top earners averaging at $39,970.**

[Click to Find Medical Assisting Programs]

#3: Paralegal Certificate
Education time: About nine months to one year, on average.*

If you already have a bachelor's degree, a paralegal certificate program could help you prepare for this career. Paralegals help lawyers by drafting legal documents, investigating cases, and providing assistance during trials.

Average earning potential: Paralegals have an average annual income of $50,080. The top ten percent average at $75,700.*

[Click to Find Paralegal Programs Near You]

#4: Culinary Arts Certificate
Education time: About one year, on average.*

Want to prepare food for a living? Consider earning a culinary arts certificate. As a chef, you could oversee daily food preparation and service. You might also supervise kitchen staff and even create menus.

Average earning potential: Chefs have an average annual wage of $44,240. The top ten percent have an average annual salary of more than $69,560.**

[Find Culinary Arts programs near you now]

#5: Dental Assisting Certificate
Education time: About one year, on average.*

As a dental assistant, your responsibilities could include sterilizing equipment, updating patient dental records, and assisting dentists during procedures. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, dental assisting is another fast-growing occupation, making it a good time to start preparing to pursue this career.

Average earning potential: Dental assistants make $34,000, on average. The top ten percent in this profession average at more than $47,070.**

[Find Dental Assisting programs Near You]

#6: Ultrasound Technician Certificate
Education time: About one year, on average.*

If you're already working in the health care field and want to increase your marketability, an ultrasound technician certificate could help. As an ultrasound technician or medical sonographer, you could work with patients during scans and analyze the results for doctors.

Average earning potential: Diagnostic medical sonographers have an average yearly income of $63,640. Top earners in this field average at $85,950.**

[Click to Find Ultrasound Technician Programs]

#7: Graphic Design Certificate
Education time: About one year, on average.*

Graphic designers create visual solutions to get their client's messages out through print or electronic media. If you already have a bachelor's degree but want to transition to a more creative career, a graphic design certificate could help you gain valuable skills.

Average earning potential: Graphic designers have an average yearly income of $47,820. The top ten percent average at $76,450.**

[Find Graphic Design Programs Near You]

#8: Pharmacy Technician Certificate
Education time: About six months to one year, on average.*

Pharmacy technicians often process prescription requests and pour, weigh, measure, and mix medications under the direction of a pharmacist. If you want to pursue this career, consider completing a pharmacy technician program. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, employees prefer to hire those with formal preparation and certification.

Average earning potential: The average annual salary for pharmacy technicians is $28,940. The top ten percent can average at more than $40,160 a year.**

[Find Pharmacy Technician programs near you now]

*Program completion times are averages and will vary by course, load and school.

*All average income information is provided by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2009. Please note: income varies by location, employer, experience, and other factors.

Written on

Find the Best
Universities

Recent Articles

Online Degrees that Could Prepare You to Pursue Flexible Careers

Certain online degrees could prepare you to pursue careers with a high level of flexibility.

5 Online Degrees That Could Pay Off

These 5 online degrees could prepare you to pursue a high-paying career.

3 Things You Need to Enroll in Online College

These tools could help you prepare for online college.

Select an Area of Study to Find a University For You!

Business

Creative Arts & Design

Criminal Justice & Security

Culinary

Education

Engineering

Psychology & Social Services

Health Care

Nursing

Trade & Vocational

IT & Computer Science

General Studies

Medical