How do I become a...?
What is the typical path to entry into a career? Many occupations require certification or a college degree, but some occupations require no formal education. When researching careers it's important to consider the necessary education, training, work experience, licenses, certification, etc. needed to enter the career or advance in the career.
Education: In some occupations, such as computer support specialist, workers have varying educational backgrounds, in others, such as doctors and lawyers, workers need advanced college degrees.
Training: Some professions require workers to receive practical or classroom training after being hired. For example, firefighters generally complete training at a fire academy or a similar program before they are considered prepared to combat fires.
Work experience: Some managers, such as architectural and engineering managers, typically have previous work experience as an architect or engineer.
Licenses: Licenses are issued by states to signify that the person has met specific legal requirements to practice that occupation. To become licensed, workers usually need to pass an examination.
Certification: Some occupations have certification either as a requirement or as a non-required opportunity. Fitness trainers are encouraged, not required, to become certified before entering the occupation, and employers will often allow a trainer to become certified after being hired.
Other qualities: Some occupations require certain aptitudes and personal characteristics. For example, a paramedic, in addition to having the required education, must also be physically strong.