From Teaching to Tech: The Best Jobs For Teachers Changing Careers

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Many teachers are preparing to close their classroom doors for the last time: The NEA reports that 55% of teachers are considering leaving the teaching profession earlier than planned. That number is almost double the number reporting that in July 2020.

Ninety percent of teachers say that they’re burned out by staffing shortages, low pay, pandemic changes, and student absences. If that describes you, you might be asking, what job can I do if I don’t want to teach anymore?

3 Signs Teaching Is No Longer Working for You

If any of these signs sound familiar, it might be time to look into second careers for teachers.

1. You don’t love teaching anymore

Many teachers get into teaching because they have a passion for it. They love working with people and seeing the lightbulb moment when students truly understand the ideas they’ve been teaching. After years of pandemic changes, increased workload, and burnout, you may not feel that love anymore. You may even have experienced depression or dread going to work every day.

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From Nurse to Working in Tech: The Ultimate Guide to Making a Career Transition from Nursing

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One in three nurses is considering leaving the profession, and the departure is growing.

McKinsey & Company found that 32% of nurses were considering a career change in November 2021, up from 22% less than a year earlier. Despite decent pay and high demand, nursing and hospital work have grown more challenging during the COVID-19 pandemic due to staffing shortages and other hindering factors.

Nursing is stable. It pays well, you tell yourself. So why do you dream of leaving?

I Want To Leave Nursing. What Else Can I Do? 

If you’re reading this article, it’s likely because you’re one of that 32%. More and more nurses experience burnout— 43.4% of former nurses cited burnout as a reason for their decision to leave.

Poor leadership and the emotional toll of working with sick and dying patients may be draining you. You may want a change because your family situation has changed and shift work no longer works with your lifestyle. Perhaps you want to develop and use skills outside of your current job responsibilities.

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10 Steps to Break Into Tech – Real Stories from Real People (UK Edition)

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Getting into tech doesn’t have to be complicated. Nowadays, it’s common for people to change careers even if you don’t have a university degree. As a result, it’s becoming increasingly common for career changers to do online courses, part-time classes, or bootcamps to pivot into a new career.

Despite Brexit and the pandemic, UK’s tech industry is booming. According to last year’s Tech Nation Report, the number of unique tech jobs advertised in the UK outweighed that of other European countries by 259% on average.

UK employers are always looking for new tech talent — keep reading to discover our top 10 tips to break into tech without a university degree.

Tip #1: Your Transferable Skills are a Gold Mine

You’ve probably heard about transferable skills as someone looking to change careers. But what are transferable skills, and which are the most important?

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What is upskilling and what are the benefits?

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Digital transformation has created opportunities and challenges for corporate leaders. Ways of doing business have changed dramatically. Today, consumers want to engage and transact with brands digitally, which has led to massive investment in technology. Yet the workforce’s skills have not kept up at the same pace, leaving businesses playing catch up as they race to hire the right talent to meet consumers’ demand for modern experiences.

According to Statista, global investment in digital transformation is expected to nearly double from $1.8 trillion in 2022 to $2.8 trillion in 2025, which will only serve to widen this skills gap. As companies continue to struggle to find the right technical talent from external sources, they are increasingly turning to upskilling their existing workforces to fill needed roles.

What is upskilling?

Upskilling is when an employee learns new skills that enable them to advance in their career. For example, an individual contributor might learn data skills so they can be promoted into a management role. Upskilling shouldn’t be confused with reskilling, in which an employee learns new skills that enable them to transition into an entirely different role.

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How to Build a Successful Talent Development Strategy in 5 Easy Steps

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A successful talent development strategy is critical for businesses to remain competitive and bridge the skills gaps within their workforces. Today, the rapid pace of technology development and digital transformation has forced companies to be more nimble and creative with talent development. Gone are the days where learning and development consisted primarily of soft skills training, like people management and conflict resolution. Today, talent development teams must also ensure their workforce has the skills needed to compete in the digital economy. 

In the US alone, corporations spend nearly $180 billion annually on formal training programs. Yet, somehow, businesses still face a global talent shortage. Talent development programs can help address this by unleashing the full potential of a company’s existing workforce. 

This isn’t something businesses can think about in a silo. According to IBM, 120 million workers in the world’s largest economies may need to be retrained due to automation. If companies don’t plan for the future with innovative approaches to talent development, mass displacement of workers could occur—with serious economic ramifications. 

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One Way to Recession-Proof Education Investment? Work-based Learning

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Despite budget cutbacks and headlines warning of Big Tech’s hiring slowdown, overall employer demand for technical skills is still on the rise and projected to grow, with job postings across technical sectors still twice as high than any other fields.

But many workers are struggling to access the opportunities that put these in-demand jobs within reach. COVID-19 has driven the skills gap even wider, with nearly six in 10 U.S. workers expressing that a lack of skills prevented them from applying for a job they wanted in the last two years and countless employers complaining of a labor shortage. Automation and digitization are accelerating, and millions of low wage workers are at risk for displacement.

Resolving the global training deficit is a massive and complex undertaking – and while significant, meaningful work is underway, it cannot be accomplished without wide-scale public and private sector collaboration. As rising inflation wears away personal disposable income, and the college debt crisis reaches new heights, it’s clear the onus cannot be on individual workers to bankroll solutions. Instead, for an industry known for cutting edge innovation, a tried and true model is emerging as an effective tool: apprenticeships.

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Alumni Success Stories: How this GA Grad went from Farmer to UI/UX Designer Build Blog

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Ming Xuan Teng Alumni Portrait

Meet Ming Xuan🧑‍🎓, a proud GA User Experience Design graduate and successful UI/UX Designer. Read first-hand about her difficult but rewarding career change journey and see how General Assembly’s User Experience Design Immersive (UXDI) helped prepare her for a career in the UX Industry.

What were you doing before joining GA?

I was a farmer (farm specialist trainee) looking for full time opportunities but had little luck. I started taking up free online courses and learnt about UX. I later heard from my boyfriend that GA was offering an immersive course and, with his encouragement and support, I decided to take the leap of faith for a career switch.

What inspired you to decide to change careers and move into UX design specifically?

I have always been interested in design and found that UX was a great combination of art (design) and science (research). I was fascinated by how research could lead to designs which were both intuitive and aesthetic. 

What was your GA journey like?

My GA journey was really great! I had super fun classmates who were a joy to work (and play) with. Many of my classmates were already in the creative industry and were very willing to share tips and tricks, and discuss various topics. The instructional team was also very experienced in the field and were super supportive and helpful throughout the intense course.

How did you feel throughout this career transition?

I was very nervous quitting my previous position to enter this completely unrelated field and afraid that I won’t be able to pass the course. Through the duration and intensity of the course, I got more confident in my abilities and skills. 

When I graduated, I was faced with Imposter Syndrome and was very worried about not being able to land a job. A couple of us from class formed a support group and we just cheered each other on whenever any of us felt burnt out. 

As a UX Designer,  I find it most fruitful to see my designs slowly come to live and work through technical limitations with the developers. I look forward to seeing real users interacting with the products and further improving from there!

What advice would you give to someone who is keen to join a GA Course?

Do your research! Take up free online courses first to have a taste of what it’s like. If you like it and are ready to commit yourself to it, just take that leap of faith! It won’t be easy but “nothing worth having comes easy” right?

Alumni Success Stories: From Public Relations to UX Design

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Megan Cruickshank Portrait. UXDI GA Sydney.

Meet Megan Cruickshank🧑‍🎓, a proud GA User Experience Design graduate and now a successful Designer. Find out why she made the decision to join General Assembly’s User Experience Design Immersive (UXDI). She shared with us her learning journey, how she prepared for the course and what the transition to a new industry was like for her.

What were you doing before you came to GA?

I started my career in public relations and social media before I realised that what I wanted to be doing was more holistic problem solving – it never made sense to me to spend huge budgets to market products that (sometimes) were flawed! I felt like I was solving the wrong problem. 

What did you enjoy most about your course? 

I loved how practical the course was in replicating real working conditions – completing projects within constraints, rather than only learning UX within a perfect world. Susan was an amazing instructor and my biggest learning was how to trust my gut, learn the rules, and how to break them. I’m still friends with many of my fellow students even now and appreciated meeting new people who shared the same passion as me. 

What are you doing now professionally? 

I work as a Service & Strategic Designer at a Design Studio in Melbourne now – my favourite thing is always working on different projects and different problems – every day is so different. Personally I also love working as a generalist designer so I get to flex different muscles all the time and continue to learn constantly. 

What advice do you have for individuals who are looking to change careers?

Lean on your past experience and the soft skills you already have as much as you can, especially if like me, you don’t have any previous “design” experience on paper. Think about all of the things you can offer that other designers can’t and what your own unique value proposition is! Get good with telling your brand story to anyone who will listen.

Is there anything else you’d like to share?

You get out of the course what you put in. Go above and beyond, listen to your instructors and career coaches. Everyone is here to help you win – the only person standing in your way is YOU! Decide you’re passionate about it and go all in. 

Feeling inspired to start your own path as a UX designer? Check out GA’s part-time and full-time UX design courses and introductory workshops. 

3 mistakes you’re making when setting DEI goals…and how to avoid them

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When it comes to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), top global businesses are struggling to bridge the gap between aspirations and actions. They know building a truly inclusive work culture is essential when it comes to social expectations, political trends, and board and shareholder demands. But business leaders also understand the direct correlation between a strong DEI program and attracting–to retain–top diverse talent. So, many businesses have stated their goals and started working toward them. They have established employee resource groups. They have appointed an array of DEI executives. They have made public pledges to elevate diverse employees to the C-Suite level. They have set a timeline for building a more diverse workforce. In short, they have taken the first–and very necessary–steps.

While society is committed to advancing DEI in the workplace, logic and statistics show there is still much work to do–from ensuring better diverse representation to more equitable compensation. Only 4% of companies employ a female chair and a meager 3.2% of executive or senior-level managers at Fortune 500 companies are Black. When you dig into pay disparities, the statistics are even more disconcerting. For every dollar a white male employee makes, Black employees make 62 cents, and Latina employees just 54 cents. The facts, while stark, are hardly surprising. Businesses have been talking about building a more diverse workforce for years, but–for the most part–they have been stuck in neutral, spinning their well-intentioned wheels.

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Don’t Let These 5 Career Change Myths Hold You Back

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How old were you when you chose your career path? 

Likely it was some time in your early 20s — when you chose your university or college major, started looking for full time work, or maybe just felt societal pressure to make a decision about what career you wanted to pursue. 

Whenever it was, you’re likely a different person then you were at that age. You know more, there are new career options and your interests might have changed altogether. People evolve, and it’s okay for your career to evolve with you. 

But a big change comes with obstacles, both internally and externally. 

“I’m not good enough”

 â€śIt’s financially impossible” 

“I don’t have the right connections”

…these are some of the lies we tell ourselves that get in the way of making a positive change. We get it, change is scary and hard. But you know what’s more scary? Staying in a job you don’t like. That’s why it’s time to put those anxieties aside.

In this blog, we’ll walk you through some common career change myths and actionable steps to help you overcome your fears.

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