Why choose a nontraditional career?
Women and men can gain real advantages by choosing a nontraditional career. Society benefits, too. When men and women choose nontraditional careers, stereotypes break down, giving everyone more roads to success! Here's what you stand to gain:
Job Satisfaction: People who choose nontraditional careers based on their abilities and interests experience greater job satisfaction than those who limit themselves to traditional choices for their gender.
Participate in Growing Industries: Many nontraditional careers are linked to new technologies and fast-growing fields like health care and alternative energy. Fast-growing fields also experience labor shortages and offer opportunities in a variety of career paths. Because demand is often nationwide, your valuable skills can take you anywhere!
Increased Salaries, Better Benefits: Many nontraditional careers offer higher salaries, especially for women. These careers also may offer better health and retirement benefits.
Gender Equity Hiring Practices: Because there are fewer people of your gender vying for jobs, you may have better chances of being hired and promoted.
Greater Opportunities for Advancement and Learning: The trade unions and established career ladders often found in male-dominated careers give employees of both genders job security and more chances for promotion. Frequent on-the-job training keeps you up to speed on new technologies.
When faced with challenges...
While the advantages far outweigh the challenges, some people experience obstacles in taking on a nontraditional role. You can navigate any of these situations by being prepared and proactive in your approach, should you face any of the following:
Feeling isolated: You might be the only one or one of a few of your gender at your workplace. A sense of isolation is common especially during your first weeks on the job. However, the feeling of not "fitting in" will go away as you get to know your coworkers and they get to know you.
Discrimination and/or harassment: These serious problems do not just happen to women or in nontraditional workplaces.
Unfortunately, these illegal acts can take place anywhere and be directed at anyone.
Most responsible employers have written policies and training to help their employees
understand both the consequences and appropriate ways to interact with each other in
Encountering the unfamiliar: Are you ready to do something different? Nontraditional careers may spark insecurities about stepping outside familiar gender roles. As a remedy, take time to prepare for your new career. Through Palm Beach State's close ties with industry and our focus on teaching the latest technologies, you'll be learning the skills employers need now. Once on the job, if you do encounter unfamiliar procedures, techniques or equipment, remember to keep a positive attitude and don't get in your own way! You can do it!