10 Best Jobs For A Second Career

As many older Americans put off retirement and continue working, it makes sense that some of them are looking for second careers -- jobs that may have little to do with the careers they became experts at.

AARP notes that second, or "encore," careers have become increasingly common among those age 50 and older, noting the some 9 million boomers have found new livelihoods, while some 30 million more say they would like to make a change.

Of course, it isn't only older people who change careers. Many younger workers find that they're unsatisfied with their initial choice in jobs and want to do something else. The Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn't compile data on job changers -- in part, the agency says, because there's no consensus on what constitutes a career change.

Researchers do know, however, that younger people are more apt to change jobs more often than older ones. As The Wall Street Journal reported last fall, three in four workers age 16 to 19, and half of those 20 to 24, have been with their current employers for less than a year.

With the help of PayScale and BLS data, AOL Jobs has identified 10 jobs that are ideal jobs for those looking for a second career. The positions listed below are relatively high paying, don't require an advanced degree, aren't management-level jobs, have good growth projections and employ relatively large numbers of people.

The job-search portal notes that some of these jobs may be easier to gain a foothold in if you have previous, related experience. With that in mind, we've included a brief job description as well as the typical background each position requires to give a better idea of what's needed ideally to do the job.

10. Marketing Analyst: Study market conditions in local, regional or national areas to examine potential sales of products or services.
  • Median annual pay: $56,400*
  • Background / preparation required: strong analytical skills / top jobs often require a master's degree

Looking for a job as a marketing analyst? Click here to get started.

9. Home Care Nurse: Works with disabled and chronically ill patients as well as older people who need assistance, which may include bathing and dressing patients and performing light housekeeping.
  • Median annual pay: $62,100
  • Background / preparation required: health care / associate degree

Looking for a job as a home care nurse? Click here to get started.

8. Medical Equipment Field Service Engineer: Installs, maintains and repairs patient-care equipment, which may include devices used in patients' homes.
  • Median annual pay: $62,300
  • Background / preparation required: associates degree in biomedical technology or engineering; bachelor's degree may be required.

Looking for a job as an medical equipment field service engineer? Click here to get started.

7. Dental Hygienist: Cleans teeth, examines patients for oral diseases such as gingivitis, and provides other preventative dental care, including education and instruction.
  • Median annual pay: $67,300
  • Background / preparation required: health care / associate degree

Looking for a job as a dental hygienist? Click here to get started.

6. Biomedical Engineer: Designs ways to build new replacement parts for the human body.
  • Median annual pay: $71,500
  • Background / preparation required: engineering / a bachelor's degree in biomedical engineering is typically required.

Looking for a job as a biomedical engineer? Click here to get started.

5. Software Developer: Develop applications that allow user to perform specific tasks on computers and other devices, or create operating systems that run the devices or control networks.
  • Median annual pay: $72,400
  • Background / preparation required: computer science / bachelor's degree may be required.

Looking for a job as a software developer? Click here to get started.

4. User Interface Engineer: Design and build systems that allows users to more easily interact with computers and other systems (similar to software engineer).
  • Median annual pay: $77,000.
  • Background / preparation required: computer science / bachelor's degree may be required.

Looking for a job as a user interface engineer? Click here to get started.

3. Clinical Research Associate (CRA): Monitors clinical trials involving medical research and drug testing.
  • Median annual pay: $80,200.
  • Background / preparation required: research / a certification or degree in a medical field may be required.

Looking for a job as a clinical research associate? Click here to get started.

2. Portfolio Manager: Supervises a team of analysts and selects the mix of products, industries and regions for a given investment portfolio.
  • Median annual pay: $83,900.
  • Background / preparation required: finance / business; a bachelor's degree is typical though some positions may require a master's degree.

Looking for a job as a portfolio manager? Click here to get started.

1. Supply Chain Consultant: Works with companies and organizations to design systems to move products from supplier to consumer more efficiently.
  • Median annual pay: $95,700.
  • Background / preparation required: finance / business; bachelor's degree may be required.

Looking for a job as a supply chain consultant? Click here to get started.


*NOTE: The salary shown for each career is the amount earned by workers with 5 to 8 years of experience in that occupation -- half earn more, while half make less.




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2 Comments

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Hey Jackie!

You say these jobs "don't require an advanced degree" yet half of them require a bachelor's degree, and #10 requires an MBA! Hardly second career jobs.

January 03 2013 at 11:32 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gary

The entry level pay for most of these jobs is less than HALF the median salary to start.. so dont' get your hopes up to enter the middle class should you land one of these jobs. Ex, dental hygenist will make $29k to start.. with little exp. entry level, and $67k is way out of line.. be considered lucky if you can make $55k working overtime.

July 09 2012 at 9:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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