Career Options for Working with Teenage Parents
Some individuals become parents during their teenage years. This may occur while they're still in high school, or after graduation but before they've attended college. Since teenage parents are typically not ready to secure a career or capable of providing for their family, they may need to work with professionals who can help them complete their education, make informed decisions about their child, access resources they need or address legal issues.
|Job Title||Median Salary* (2016)||Growth* (2014-2024)|
|School and Career Counselors||$54,560||8%|
|High School Teachers||$58,030||6%|
|Child and Family Social Workers||$43,250 (for all child, family and school social workers)||6% (for all child, family and school social workers)|
|Health Educators and Community Health Workers||$44,390||13%|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Career Information for Jobs Working with Teenage Parents
Pediatricians earn a medical degree and then fulfill the terms of a residency and internship program in pediatrics. This prepares them to be medical doctors who specialize in working with children. They also care for infants and teenagers. Since pediatricians provide medical care to teenagers, they may be involved in providing medical care to a teenager during her pregnancy. After teenage parents have given birth, their baby will typically also see a pediatrician for medical check-ups.
School and Career Counselors
School and career counselors may work in school environments and might be involved in counseling teenagers who are pregnant or have a child. Those who work in schools are usually involved in helping students determine their career goals and decide what courses they need to take. Teenage parents may work with school and career counselors who can help them assess their career options in relation to their family needs and concerns, and they may inform these students about financial assistance they can seek so that they can continue to attend school. School and career counselors are required to have a master's degree.
High School Teachers
High school teachers work with teenagers, and they may work with teenagers who are already parents. They may adjust the focus of their teaching or offer different classes that are designed to meet the needs of teenage parents. Those who teach such courses as family consumer sciences may be able to teach teenage parents and other students many practical skills that relate to independent living. High school teachers must earn a bachelor's degree, and those that teach for the public school system must have a teaching license.
Lawyers are required to have several years of postsecondary training; they must earn a law degree and their law license so that they can practice law. Lawyers can specialize in many different fields, and this includes working with families. Family lawyers may help their clients obtain a divorce. They may also seek a legal ruling regarding a child's custody. In the event that a teenager has a child and is seeking child support, they may work with an attorney to get the court to award them custody and order child support payments.
Child and Family Social Workers
Social workers help people with personal and practical issues. The work they do can vary widely, and those specializing in the area of child and family social work may be involved in helping people in their community locate financial aid or other assistance that they need in order to provide for their families. Social workers who work with teenage parents may help them apply for food stamps or find affordable housing and childcare. Social workers are required to have a bachelor's degree in social work.
Health Educators and Community Health Workers
Health educators identify health issues that may be affecting members of their community and then create programs or identify resources that can help address those health issues. Community health workers work in conjunction with health educators and talk to people in the community about their health concerns. They may also help community members learn about healthcare services they may be in need of and work with teenage parents who need to be educated about the proper care of their child. Health educators are required to have a bachelor's degree, although community health workers can learn their profession through on-the-job training.