What it involves: The pharmacy technician works under direct supervision of a licensed pharmacist, helping run the pharmacy according to the policies and procedures of different kinds of environments, from retail store pharmacies to hospital pharmacies. Programs to get the training necessary usually involve temporary placement in an actual pharmacy to get on-the-job experience, and which serves as an on-the-job interview to actually get hired.
Job prospects: Employment of pharmacy technicians is projected to increase 32 percent nationwide between 2010 and 2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In Florida, job openings for pharmacy technicians are projected to grow 28 percentbetween 2008 and 2018, according to figures from the Florida Agency for Workforce Innovation. Aging population, longer life expectancies, new treatments and technology are driving growth in the healthcare industry, in turn creating demand for related occupations like pharmacy technicians.
Learn more: www.pharm acy tech nician salarydata .com
Job: Legal Assistant or Paralegal
Median salary: $46,810.
Training/certificate needed: An associate degree in paralegal studies with a certificate from a recognized paralegal program is required for many entry-level paralegal positions, although some employers might hire prospects who have taken only a certificate program offered in a business school. Conversely, some law firms will require four years of paralegal studies plus certification.
Cost of training: About $300 per course at Broward College or Miami Dade College, or about $7,000 for the 64-credit associate degree. Costs would be higher at private business schools and universities, including Nova Southeastern University.
What it involves: The legal assistant’s or paralegal’s work (the two terms are often used interchangeably) will vary depending on the specializations of the law firm. The legal assistant performs much of the work of case preparation that a lawyer would otherwise do, such as legal research, document preparation and witness coaching. However, there are a few things that a paralegal cannot undertake, such as present cases in court, sign documents or officially advise clients. Paralegals also can work in the legal departments of companies and organizations.
Job prospects: Legal occupations will increase by about 131,000 between 2010 and 2020, representing a growth rate of 11 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This growth reflects continued demand for legal services from government, individuals and businesses. Paralegals and legal assistants are expected to account for 46,900 new jobs nationwide in that time period, as legal establishments attempt to reduce costs by assigning these workers more tasks that were once performed by lawyers. In Florida, openings for legal assistants or paralegals are projected to increase 24 percent between 2008 and 2018, according to the Agency for Workforce Innovation. There are job opportunities for paralegals other than working in law firms, as many corporations and organizations also employ paralegals, where they have various legal duties.
Learn more: www.paralegalsalaryfactsheet.com
Job: Computer Support/Network Support Specialist
Median salary: $46,260
Training/certificate needed: An associate degree with specialized courses on the ins and outs of computer networks and computer servers will get you in the door. Obtaining industry certifications and taking more continuing education courses in the constantly-evolving field of information technology will boost your qualifications for advancement.