You don’t have to become a doctor or a nurse to get a career in medicine. There are many paths you can take to achieve this goal, and they can be just as fulfilling. For instance, you could become a pharmacist, a medical lab technician, or even work in health administration.
So don’t be discouraged by the different paths you can take — just choose the one that’s right for you! Here are some careers you might want to consider, as well as what kind of degree you should major in to get there.
Pharmacists work in pharmacies or drugstores, obtaining prescription medication for their patients. And you don’t have to become a doctor or a nurse to get this job. What you need is to earn a bachelor’s degree from an accredited pharmacy school.
Of course, you don’t want to major in anything too obscure that won’t help you get a job after graduation. Pharmacists usually need to earn a Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree to practice. You can major in anything, as long as it’s science-related; prerequisites for this degree usually include biology, chemistry, and physics courses.
What if you don’t want to go through medical school, but still want a career in medicine? You can always become a research assistant. This usually means you’ll need to earn a bachelor’s degree in science, then work as an assistant for a doctor or researcher.
You might be able to get this job with a degree in something non-science-related, but you won’t be able to compete with people with degrees in biology or chemistry. So take the time to major in something that will give you an edge.
Medical Lab Technician
Medical lab technicians use laboratory equipment to perform tests on blood samples and other bodily fluids. Usually, a bachelor’s degree is required for this job, but you can major in anything as long as it’s science-related. You don’t need to study as many subjects as for a science degree, but you should take classes in biology and chemistry.
This is because medical lab technicians need to take a national certification exam after they graduate, which requires classes in these subjects. So sound out the different degrees at your college beforehand to see if they include the classes you need.
Health administrators are also employed in the healthcare industry, but not necessarily in hospitals and clinics. They usually work in public health and manage healthcare services in a community or region that’s under their jurisdiction.
You need to earn a bachelor’s degree for this career, and you can major in anything as long as it’s science-related once again — meaning that biology, chemistry, and physics must be included in your curriculum. Prerequisites for this degree usually include mathematics courses.
Nutritionists provide dietary advice and education on proper eating habits, with an emphasis on overall health. They often work in hospitals, nursing homes, and restaurants. If you’re interested in nutrition, you can earn a bachelor’s degree in this field.
People who study to become a nutritionist usually need to earn a bachelor’s degree in nutrition, food and nutrition science, or public health nutrition. Nutritionists also need to be licensed in some states, which means you’ll need to pass a certification test after graduating.
Administrative assistants do just that — they assist the administrative staff in their office, managing day-to-day tasks like scheduling appointments and handling phone calls. You don’t necessarily need a bachelor’s degree to do this job, but you should major in business or finance to be considered for employment.
You can choose to major in anything as long as it’s business-related; prerequisites for this degree usually include liberal arts, economics, and business courses. This is because administrative assistants need to take a certification test before they’re hired to work in an office, and this test requires courses in these subjects.
Mental Health Social Worker
Mental health social workers provide guidance and assistance to people with mental disabilities. They usually work in community-based clinics, but can also be employed in other types of facilities such as hospitals.
To become a mental health social worker, you’ll need to earn an associate degree in social work or a similar subject. Then you’ll need to go on and earn a bachelor’s degree in the same subject — always under the social work umbrella. After that, you should be able to get your license in social work.
Don’t forget that there are many paths you can take to a career in medicine. Becoming a doctor or a nurse isn’t the only way to accomplish this goal, so don’t be discouraged by the different paths you can take. Instead, you should choose the one that you think is right for you!