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Higher Education Careers for Veterans

Mar 17, 2018

Higher education offers opportunities for teachers and faculty, but like any other large organization it has many other administrative and support roles. Discover careers for veterans.

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Veterans have experience in many different fields that are applicable to higher education careers, and most of them are not in teaching. Below are five career opportunities.

Career Comparison

Job Title Median Wage (2016)* Job Growth (2016-2026)* Applicable Military Skills/Traits
General Maintenance and Repair Workers $36,940 8% Experience with construction and maintenance of grounds, facilities, HVAC, and other systems
School and Career Counselors $54,560 13% Advising of troops and recruits in career choices and other issues
Computer Network Support Specialists $62,670 8% Experience setting up and maintaining computer systems and networks
Postsecondary Teachers $75,430 15% Specialized advanced training as an instructor and experience in related fields
Public Relations and Fundraising Managers $107,320 10% Performance of public relations during active duty

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Higher Education Careers for Military Veterans

Colleges and Universities require much of the same support as any large institution, such as facilities maintenance, computer networks and support, and publicity, as well as student services and teaching. Many of these careers may be a good fit for veterans from any military branch and a variety of job classifications.

General Maintenance and Repair Workers

Universities and colleges have grounds and buildings to maintain, and they need staff with training and experience to ensure the job is done right. Military veterans may stand out from others in this career category due to their experience, training, ability to read blueprints and schematics, and willingness to follow safety procedures.

General maintenance and repair workers are responsible for the maintenance of industrial sites and business facilities. They may repair and replace machinery, such as heating and cooling systems, as well as fix plumbing, perform carpentry, or paint. They may also work on flooring, windows, and other items. This position requires experience and a high school diploma.

School and Career Counselors

This may be a good career choice for veterans who served as military recruiters or military social workers. In fact, some schools have positions dedicated to working with veterans seeking education and career advice. Veterans seeking these positions may have an advantage over other candidates.

School counselors provide assistance and guidance for students in terms of their academic choices and advancement. Career counselors work with people to help them make good choices and to chart a career path that has the potential for success. Both types of counselors usually require a master's degree. In addition, experience and licensing is required, which varies by state. Certification agencies are different for school counselors and career counselors, and state licensing requirements differ by state and specific job title.

Computer Network Support Specialist

Veterans with experience setting up and maintaining computers and networks are likely to find a number of opportunities in this field. Testing and troubleshooting experience with a variety of networking systems, including wireless, is likely to help veterans stand out in this career.

Computer network support specialists are in charge of monitoring and maintaining computer and network systems throughout an organization or department. They perform diagnostic tests and analysis on systems, and troubleshoot problems. They often work on multiple systems, such as local area networks (LANs) and wide area networks (WANs), as well as Internet connectivity. This career requires an associate's degree.

Postsecondary Teachers

Veterans who enjoyed teaching and leading will likely do best in this career. Recruiters, trainers, and instructors may have an advantage due to their prior experience.

Postsecondary teachers work at the college and university level. They teach in a wide variety of subjects, from highly technical or scientific subjects, like engineering and physics, to applied science subjects, like nursing and accounting. There are a variety of levels for pay and benefits which teachers fall into, with many working as hourly faculty lecturers, while professors have tenured salaries and divide their time between lectures and research. A Ph.D. in a subject related to the course is almost always required, although graduate students working toward their Ph.D.'s may teach some courses. At the community college level some positions are open to those with master's degrees.

Public Relations and Fundraising Managers

For those veterans who served as public relations officers, or worked in these departments, this could be a good career choice. Hands-on experience with public relations during military service may allow veterans to stand out in a competitive field.

Public relations and fundraising managers are responsible for maintaining a positive public image for their institution. They may do this through press releases, public information campaigns, and public events. Many universities and colleges rely on donations and fundraising for many operations that improve student achievement and opportunities. Experienced and effective fundraising management is vital to maintaining these programs. A bachelor's degree and experience are required for this career.

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