The current state of the job market is one to be cautious about. It’s no secret that it is difficult to find work, but there are some areas where jobs are plentiful and rewarding. One such field is school counseling. There are many reasons why becoming a school counselor can be beneficial. Here are some of them you should consider.
Get More Vacation Time
You may be surprised to learn that school counselors are among the most well-rested professionals in the country. Schools are well aware of the fact that students need time off from studies to ensure a balanced life. Since you will be a school counselor, you will also get leave with the students.
School counselors typically work full days, but they rarely have to work weekends or nights. They likely have the summers off as well. This extra time off allows you to take care of yourself and recharge before diving back into your work routine.
A Chance to Change Lives
School counselors are an essential part of any school’s staff. Zippia estimates that over 33,957 school counselors are employed in the United States. They serve a variety of roles and play a vital role in students’ academic, social, and emotional development. Making a difference in students’ lives is one of the most rewarding aspects of being a school counselor.
As a school counselor, you can help students with all aspects of their lives. You can help them with their problems and concerns, whether something as simple as not having enough money for lunch or an issue that is more serious, like bullying.
You can also assist them by helping them improve their grades and study habits, so they are better prepared for college and/or career choices later in life. School counselors may even be involved in helping students develop their social skills so that they feel better about themselves and have more friends at school or online.
School counselors help students achieve their goals:
- School counselors assist students with college applications and financial aid applications.
- School counselors advise high school seniors on post-secondary options (such as dual enrollment programs) that will lead to successful high school completion and entry into post-secondary education or training programs.
- School counselors provide long-term support to all students throughout their educational careers, including those who may struggle academically, socially, or emotionally.
If you love working with children or teens, this career path could be right up your alley. By becoming an educator, you can positively impact another person’s life while simultaneously earning an excellent income by teaching others what you love most.
Wide-Open Job Market
School counselors are in demand, and the job market is strong. School counselors are needed at all levels of education and in private practice. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field is projected to grow 10% from 2021 to 2031. This growth rate is higher than the average for all occupations.
The American School Counselor Association recommends a 250-to-1 ratio of students to school counselors. The national average for the 2020–2021 school year was 415-to-1. This is a much higher ratio than the recommended amount, showing how vital school counselors are to students.
School counselors are often required to have an advanced degree, such as a master’s degree in school counseling or a doctorate in educational psychology. If you’re interested in becoming a school counselor but don’t have an advanced degree yet, there are online programs that allow you to earn one without having to leave your current job or move away from home.
An online Masters in School Counseling program from a good institute will prepare you for this career by providing the skills needed to work with students in different settings such as elementary schools, middle schools, high schools, and colleges. It will also prepare you for the licensed professional counselor exam.
School counselors are well compensated for their work. The high demand for school counselors is one of the reasons behind the increasing salaries. The average annual salary of school counselors is $60,510 per year, which is higher than social workers in general ($50,390).
Besides the demand, the vitality of the role is also a crucial factor. The experiences that students have in their schools can impact their entire life. Hence, the role of school counselors has become significant. They can play a key role in shaping the lives of students who are being bullied or feel lonely in school.
Flexible Work Schedules
Flexible work schedules are another significant advantage of being a school counselor. You can work full-time, part-time, or on a contract basis. The school district usually sets the hours for school counselors, and more often than not, these positions offer incredible benefits like paid vacation days and holidays off.
A flexible work schedule can also help you healthwise. A study published in 2021 found that having a flexible work schedule was associated with a reduced reported likelihood of stress at work. Hence, it will be easier for you to maintain a work-life balance.
Autonomy and Independence
As a school counselor, you will have the opportunity to work independently. You can work with students, teachers, parents, and other school staff. You can develop your curriculum, allowing flexibility in your schedule.
In other words, you can choose when you want to take vacation days or go on maternity leave, which is only sometimes possible when working for someone else or in a company environment where everyone needs to show up at the same time each morning. Also Read – How To Become a Detective: Education and Career Roadmap
Now is the perfect time to become a school counselor. The job market is excellent, and there are many opportunities to make a difference in the lives of children and families. School counseling is one of the most rewarding careers you can choose because you work with kids in all stages of development, from kindergarten through high school graduation.
Whether you’re a recent graduate or an experienced professional, school counseling is a rewarding and fulfilling career. There are many reasons why it makes sense to consider this as your next step. Hopefully, this list has given you some ideas about making the most of your time in school counseling.