Copyright

Career Information for a Certificate Program

If you're not interested in pursuing a degree but want to pursue a new career, an alternative is to enroll in a certificate program. People can complete certificate programs for careers such as caterer, hotel receptionist, network design engineer assistant and dental assistant. Read about these career options to see if one is right for you.

View popular schools

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Agriculture
  • Architecture
  • Biological and Biomedical Sciences
  • Business
  • Communications and Journalism
  • Computer Sciences
  • Culinary Arts and Personal Services
  • Education
  • Engineering
  • Legal
  • Liberal Arts and Humanities
  • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
  • Medical and Health Professions
  • Physical Sciences
  • Psychology
  • Transportation and Distribution
  • Visual and Performing Arts

Career Options for Certificate Graduates

There are a variety of career options for which no degree is required. People can also improve their salaries and job prospects by gaining skills through certificate programs. There are as many certificate programs as there are passions, from sewing machine repair to drawing to interior design. By completing a certificate program, you could pursue such careers as caterer, hotel receptionist, network design engineer assistant or dental assistant.

Caterer Hotel Receptionist Network Design Engineer Assistant Dental Assistant
Field of Education Food Service Management Hospitality; Office Administration Computer Science Dental Assisting
Duties Food preparation and service Customer service, telephone and computer skills Network and computer setup, maintenance and repair Initial patient care, equipment management
Median Salary (2015)* $48,690 (all food and beverage managers) $21,040 $62,250 (all network support specialists) $35,980
Job Outlook (2014-2024)* 5% growth 10% growth (all receptionists) 8% growth (all network support specialists) 18% growth

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Caterer

Many functions, be they big or small, provide food for delegates, guests or employees. This may comprise light snacks or a larger, more formal meal comprising several courses, including alcoholic beverages and dessert. Caterers may work in large industrial kitchens or use clients' on-site kitchen facilities. Quite often food is prepared off-site and brought in using insulated containers to retain heat and quality. To reduce costs, some companies now employ caterers to oversee hospitality rather than incurring the expense, both in terms of time and money, of dining out with clients.

Holders of certificates in catering or hospitality services generally find work as catering managers or captains, directing the labor of others and interacting with clients. Hours generally start quite early in order to prepare meals in time. Weekend work is common, and for some companies weekends may be the busiest time of the week. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), all food and beverage managers, including caterers, earned a median salary of $48,690 as of May 2015.

Hotel Receptionist

Hotel receptionists perform a vital role in the smooth running of a hotel. They represent the hotel to the public and are generally the first person guests meet. Hotel receptionists need to be approachable, confident, helpful and have high standards of personal grooming. Work involves meeting and greeting guests, allocating rooms, bill preparation, taking payment and helping guests make travel arrangements. Most hotel receptionists work shifts, especially in large international hotels.

In spite of the growth in telecommuting and e-commerce, face-to-face meetings are still necessary for many business dealings, and hotels continue to enjoy a healthy revenue stream from the business community. The BLS reported in May 2015 that hotel receptionists earned a median salary of $21,040.

Network Design Engineer Assistant

Network design engineer assistants may find employment with many different companies. As computer technology has become the modern economy's most valuable resource and networking has become commonplace, the need for workers with expertise in these fields has exploded. Daily tasks for a network design engineer assistant may include installing, designing and configuring networks. Many companies have networks already, so much of a network design assistant's work may consist of upgrading existing installations to improve response times, tighten security, maximize performance and increase bandwidth. The BLS notes that computer network support specialists earned a median of $62,250 per year as of May 2015.

Dental Assistant

Dental assistants perform both clinical and administrative tasks in dental offices. State laws affect the kinds of tasks these professionals can do, especially advanced procedures like coronal polishing and the application of sealants, anesthetics and fluoride. Common tasks for dental assistants include giving dentists tools during procedures, processing x-rays, cleaning dental tools and getting patients ready for treatments. Some administrative duties they might perform include dealing with customer billing, scheduling appointments and maintaining dental treatment records.

Dental assistants usually gain practical experience during a certificate program. Depending on the state in which they work, additional certification may be needed. Licensure or registration is also needed for assistants to do advanced tasks in some states. In May 2015, the BLS reported that dental assistants earned a median wage of $35,980.

Overview of a Certificate Program

A professional or trade certification or professional designation is simply a way of showing that a person is qualified to perform a job. Certification means that the holder has specific knowledge, skills or abilities in the view of the certifying body. One can become certified by completing guided training and/or passing an exam. Some certifications last a lifetime, but others must be renewed at regular intervals during the course of one's career.

Next: View Schools

What is your highest level of education?

Some College
Complete your degree or find the graduate program that's right for you.
High School Diploma
Explore schools that offer bachelor and associate degrees.
Still in High School
Earn your diploma or GED. Plan your undergraduate education.

Schools you may like:

Popular Schools

The listings below may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users.

    • Master of Science in Nursing - Doctor of Nursing Practice Path, Executive Leader Specialization
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice
    • Master of Science in Nursing - Doctor of Nursing Practice Path
    • Master of Science in Legal Studies
    • MS in Psychology
    • MBA
    • Master of Public Health
    • MBA - Human Resources
    • MBA - Health Care Management
    • BS in Liberal Studies
    • BS in Business Administration
    • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Investment Career Focus Area
    • BS in Liberal Studies Leadership
    • BS in Nutrition Science
    • BSFIN in Accelerated MS Finance
    • AAS in Business Administration - Business
    • AAS in Legal Support and Services
    • AAS in Business Administration
    • AAS in Business Admin-Office Management
    • AAS in Criminal Justice
    • AAS in Accounting
    • Medical Office Administration Certificate
    • Human Services Certificates in Child and Family Services
    • Pathway to Paralegal Postbaccalaureate Certificate
    • Medical Billing and Coding Certificate
    • Family Nurse Practitioner Graduate Certificate
    • Executive Leader Graduate Certificate

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication
    • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication - Advocacy and Social Impact Concentration
    • Master of Arts in Economics
    • Master of Public Administration and Policy
    • Master of Science in Agile Project Management
    • Master of Science in Healthcare Management

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Master of Science in Accounting
    • Master of Public Administration in Non-Profit Management
    • Master of Business Administration
    • Master of Business Administration - Accounting
    • Master of Business Administration - Finance
    • Master of Business Administration - Marketing

    What is your highest level of education?

  • What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Master of Business Administration in Interdisciplinary Business
    • Master of Business Administration in Taxation
    • Master of Science in Accounting
    • Master of Science in Taxation
    • Master of Science in Library and Information Science
    • Master of Science in Library and Information Science: Academic Librarianship

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Online Master of Professional Studies in Cybersecurity Management
    • Online Master of Professional Studies in Information Technology Management

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Master of Education in Special Education, specializing in Applied Behavior Analysis
    • Master of Health Administration in Health Systems Management
    • Master of Science in Health Informatics
    • Master of Business Administration
    • Master of Education in Special Education, specializing in Autism Spectrum Disorder

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Master of Science in Communication
    • Master of Science in Education in Special Education
    • Master of Science in Engineering Technology
    • Master of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management
    • Master of Public Health
    • Master of Science in Education in Learning Design and Technology

    What is your highest level of education?

  • What is your highest level of education?

    • MA in Communication
    • Master of Liberal Arts
    • MA in Science Writing
    • MS in Applied Economics
    • MS in Geographic Information Systems
    • MS in Bioinformatics

    What is your highest level of education?

Find your perfect school

What is your highest level of education?