What Are Popular Human Services Careers?

If you're interested in a career that will allow you to address the various social needs of a community and its members, a career in human services may be a good fit. If you would like to know more about the field of human services, please keep reading. Schools offering Human Services degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is Human Services?

The field of human services encompasses a broad range of careers that attempt to improve the overall well-being of the members of a community. Success in the field requires you to have a high level of dedication and commitment, along with a sincere desire to prevent and solve the many social problems faced in today's society. These professionals also attempt to improve the quality and accessibility of the social services offered in a particular geographical area. Because the human services field is broad, it offers a wide variety of careers. A few of these careers are profiled next.

Important Facts About a Career in Human Services

Median Salary (2014) $59,100 annually (for social workers)
Required Education Bachelor's degree in social work
Master's degree (schools and health care)
On-the-Job Training 2 years or 3,000 hours of supervised clinical experience (for clinical social work)
Licensure State license required for clinical social work

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Elder Care Assistance

Working in elder care, you'd assist the elderly with a variety of daily tasks. Your job would involve providing social, personal and emotional support while encouraging the elderly to maintain a maximum level of independence. You'd also encourage the elderly to remain socially and physically active. Common workplaces include hospitals, nursing homes or day centers. You might also assist elderly living in their homes.

Youth Work

If you're interested in working with troubled youths, you could become a youth worker. In this role, you'd form relationships with struggling youngsters in order to encourage positive change in their lives. To help encourage positive growth, you may use a variety of planned recreational and social activities. Such a role also involves acting as a resource for both the youth and their families. You can often find youth care work in treatment centers or in group homes.

Drug and Alcohol Treatment Counseling

Working as drug and alcohol treatment counselor involves recognizing and treating substance abuse in a variety of clients, including inmates and youth. This work involves observing counseling sessions, as well as counseling clients in order to encourage their participation in treatment programs. Treatment specialists may also monitor and conduct group therapy sessions.

Additional Options

The sections above highlight only a few of the careers available in human services. Some other popular human services careers include:

  • Income maintenance casework
  • Social work
  • Vocational rehabilitation counseling
  • Probation officers
  • Marriage and family counselors
  • Mediators
  • Clergy
  • Child care workers

Career Outlook Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS), job opportunities in the human services field are, in general, expected to increase faster than the national average for all jobs between 2012 and 2022. For example, positions for social workers are expected to increase by 19%, and positions for substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors could increase by 31% in that time frame.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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  • Kaplan University

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