Going Back To School: One Year Certificate Programs

December 4, 2023 by Jenny Smedra

back to school

Many people consider going back to school to get a degree or change their careers. Maybe you want to increase your income or find more fulfilling work. No matter the reason, you do not have to attend a four-year university to find a good job. A certificate program might be exactly what you need to find a satisfying career with higher pay. These programs for specialized skills range from six months to two years. Here are several one year certificate programs you can enroll in to get into a new career.

One Year Certificate Programs for the Medical Field

Medical Assistant

If you want to become a medical assistant, you will achieve the certificate within nine months to a year. It offers a variety of options for the workplace as well. Every doctor’s office and hospital needs medical assistants to take care of clinical and administrative tasks. Therefore, it is a career that will also provide job security. Training includes office practices, record keeping, client confidentiality, lab techniques, and diagnostic procedures. So, if you are detail-oriented and possess good problem-solving abilities, this one could help you improve your salary.

Medical Coder

Medical coding is one of the more popular certificate programs. Recently, a friend of mine achieved her certificate in only three semesters and found immediate job placement. These skills to translate and effectively communicate medical information are in high demand. And, they pay well. It also offers incredible flexibility to travel. The certification is national, so can work anywhere in the US.

Licensed Practical & Licensed Vocational Nurse

Licensed practical nursing and licensed vocational nursing certificates are a great option for people who enjoy working with patients. You will learn the proper protocols to conduct simple medical procedures such as starting IVs and inserting catheters. Most nursing schools and colleges across the country offer these programs. However, make sure the program you choose has national accreditation before enrolling.

One Year Certificate Programs for Technical Skills

Phlebotomy Technician

If you don’t mind the sight of blood, becoming a phlebotomist might be right up your alley. This program only takes two to six months of training to receive a certificate. Then, you can work at any hospital or medical office, drawing patient’s blood for the labs. Although some states do not require it, obtaining a certification will help you find better paying positions. Furthermore, it will also create more opportunities since you have no restrictions as to where you can work.

Industrial Engineering Technician

If you obtain this certificate, you will be working alongside industrial engineers in the field. It is your job to assist with implementing designs and ensuring that companies are using their equipment to maximum efficiency. This certification means employers spend less time training you on the job, allowing you to get hands-on experience right away. That means you spend less time in the classroom and start earning a full salary sooner.

Pipefitter and Plumber

This is another job skill that is often overlooked, but necessary for every type of construction. Pipefitters and plumbers are required to install or repair pipes in every building. There are a number of applications for this certificate including inspectors, individual contracts, and large scale construction operations. While it is possible to get into the field through apprenticeships, having a certificate makes it much easier to get an entry-level position. Furthermore, it is the first step for other programs that pay even more, such as boilermakers, building inspectors, and construction managers.

One Year Certificate Programs for Other Specialized Skills

Fitness Trainer

If you love fitness and want to take your goals to the next level, studying to be a fitness trainer is a smart move. You can get paid to teach others how to achieve their goals, love their bodies, and boost self-esteem. Education takes about six months and gives you a few options for job placement. Most trainers end up work with gyms or starting their own training business.

Massage Therapist

Massage therapy is an attractive option for those who want to help people outside traditional health care. There are over 80 treatments therapists can specialize in, but each one has a starting salary around $40,000. The best part is that the time it takes to complete the course is up to you. You will need 500 hours of training through an accredited school before applying for state certification. Then, you can work for yourself or with physical therapy clinics.

Nail Technician

If you have an artistic eye or a talent for cosmetology, you should look into getting a nail technician certification. Cosmetology schools nationwide offer 600 hour training courses that fully prepare you for this new career. Once you pass the written and practical exam for your state, you are free to practice you craft and building your new career.

Benefits of a Certificate Program

A certificate program differs from degrees earned through colleges and universities. These programs offer special training for a particular job. It is designed to give you the training and experience you need in the shortest time possible.

There are jobs in several industries available to you through one year certificate programs. It is a great way for people just entering the labor force, cannot afford expensive tuition costs, or want to gain a new skill and boost your income. So, if you are interested in a new career, you can complete these programs  in less than a year.

Going back to school is intimidating, but worth the effort. Changing careers can be an exciting opportunity and one you will be glad you didn’t dismiss. If you are considering a new career path, take time to think about what skills you have and how you want to earn a living. Then, look for a certificate program that can lead you in the right direction. You will be glad you did.

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