Military spouses often put their own careers on hold as they move from one military base to another with their Active Duty spouse. Luckily, the DoD created the My Career Advancement Account (MyCAA) Scholarship Program, which pays up to $4,000 towards the cost of acquiring a license, certification or associate’s degree in a portable career field.
What is a portable career?
A portable career is a career path that allows you to pack up and take your skills with you no matter where you go! Workers develop the abilities and qualities sought-after within a variety of in-demand industries, allowing employees to often perform their jobs remotely/virtually or be able to easily transition their skills to new locations.
Instead of switching employers every time you move, military spouses in portable careers can even continue working for the same organization while working towards promotions. And by utilizing your MyCAA benefit, you’ll be able to acquire these skills with less (if any) out-of-pocket costs!
So, what are the best portable military spouse jobs and careers to pursue?
We’ve put together a short list featuring a few of the top choices within growing career fields for you to consider.
Pharmacy technicians assist busy pharmacists in dispensing prescriptions. Among the wide range of their duties, they gather necessary information, accept payments, process insurance claims, keep track of patient data, and deal directly with customers over the phone. Truly, these professionals provide invaluable services within the healthcare industry, which is why the demand for qualified workers is always steady.
The job outlook for pharmacy technicians is 7 percent, which is higher than the average for other career fields. To be a sharp pharmacy tech, you’ll need plenty of patience and outstanding customer service and listening skills, too. It’s also vital to be detail-oriented, very organized, and good at basic math since you’re dealing with pills and measurements.
Medical bills and insurance paperwork can be complicated. That’s why there’s a high demand for trained specialists in this area. Medical billers focus on ensuring that everyone is billed correctly by working with patients and insurance companies, while keeping invoices organized and paid on time. On the coding side, workers focus on assigning consistent codes to all medical actions taken, so that everyone is on the same page as the paperwork travels around.
With over 900,000 doctors in the country, plus countless medical suppliers, pharmacies, and insurance companies, there’s always a need for qualified billers and coders. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts an 11% job growth rate in medical records and health information employment. To be successful, you should be detail-oriented, analytical, comfortable working with software, and have good interpersonal skills and a high degree of integrity since you are dealing with sensitive health information.
Patients understandably feel vulnerable when sitting in a chair while people poke sharp metal objects in their mouths! A caring dental assistant helps put patients at ease while working as part of the dental team and assisting dentists with a variety of tasks. These may include prep work, instrument sterilization, taking impressions of teeth, teeth polishing, applying fluoride or sealants, lab work, records-keeping, scheduling, and billing, among many other assigned duties.
This career area is projected to rise by 11 percent between now and 2028, meaning plenty of job security for trained individuals. Dental technicians must be detail-oriented, organized, and have good interpersonal skills. It’s also important to be good with your hands and possess a high degree of dexterity, since you’ll have to work very carefully in sensitive spaces!
If you enjoy working with animals, being a veterinary assistant could be your dream job! People filling these crucial roles help to feed and clean animals, assist with exams, keep kennels and equipment maintained, and tend to animals recovering from surgery. They may also be called upon to render aid to sick or injured animals and give medication and immunizations.
Jobs for veterinary assistants are projected to grow an astounding 19% over the next decade. To perform work in this field, you’ll obviously have to have compassion for animals of all kinds, but also be able to communicate clearly with pet owners, veterinarians, and their other staff. It takes a good deal of dexterity and physical strength to do this job, since assistants may be required to hold or pick up animals…sometimes when the animals aren’t in the mood to be touched!
Graphic design is the perfect job for those with a creative streak! Working with either physical materials and/or software programs, a designer crafts visual images made to convey a feeling, idea, or message to a specific audience. The work involves speaking with clients to get a feel for what they’re after before laying out designs, often with the help of illustration or photo-editing software like Photoshop.
From logos to ad campaigns, graphic designers rely on a mix of artistic talent and technical prowess to create projects for their customers who will, in turn, use those elements on their own books, magazines, products, websites, or ad campaigns. It’s hard to pin down projected growth in this field because it varies by industry. Print material is seeing a bit of decline, however computer systems design, for example, is set to explode up to an eye-popping 24%.
The best way to keep ahead of the curve is through staying on top of trends, learning new techniques, and keeping up with ever-changing technology. With that in mind, graphic design is best suited for people who are flexible, possess artistic aptitude, the ability to understand client needs, good computer skills, and great time-management skills since you’ll be juggling all those projects!
Human resources professionals manage the life cycle of an organization’s employees. They help recruit, interview, hire, and onboard employees, as well as handle employee relations, compensation and benefits, training, and, when needed, terminations, resignations, retirements, and other exits. Suffice it to say, with such comprehensive responsibilities a strong HR team is critical to any company’s success.
That’s why BLS predicts over 67,000 new job openings per year over the next decade. That said, their site also encourages workers to seek out professional certifications in order to stay competitive. To work in HR, you’ll absolutely need strong interpersonal skills, plus the ability to make decisions which can impact the lives of others. It’s vital to be detail focused since you’ll oversee things like background checks, personnel records management, and legal matters related to labor rights.
All told, the above list covers only a few of the fantastic career opportunities for military spouses to use their MyCAA training funds on! For more information about getting started with MyCAA, fill out this form or give us a call at (855) 520-6806.