Healthcare is quickly becoming the fastest-growing industry in the United States, as well as the most promising and secure employment sector today. By the year 2024, experts predict that over 2.3 million jobs will become available to aspiring healthcare professionals. If you are interested in becoming a healer – whether it be a nurse, physician, medical assistant, dentist, or even a social worker – now is undoubtedly the time to kick off your career path at a reputable healthcare school.
But where do you begin? Deciding what kind of education to get (and where to get it) can feel quite overwhelming, as there are so many different possibilities out there today. Healthcare is a multi-faceted field, with an array of career choices in research, patient care, administration, and advocacy. Typically, the path you choose to follow will also guide your path for learning and training at a dedicated healthcare school. The thing is, you might still be deciding which career path is the right one to take. You may know that you want a future in healthcare, a future of helping others, but are unsure of your next steps. These are big life decisions; ones you shouldn’t have to make alone.
As a leading healthcare school in the state of Connecticut, Goodwin College has created this article to help guide you through the decision-making process and set you up for success in the healthcare field. From program quality to program offerings, class flexibility to enrollment requirements, there are many core considerations we recommend you keep in mind. By taking the following actions, you will be on your way to choosing the right healthcare school for your goals and needs:
- Assess your needs and decide which type of program makes the most sense for you.
As with any major decision, you first need to take time to think about your own needs, and consider what you would like to gain from your healthcare education. Do you prefer a blend of clinical and classroom training? Do you work better alone, or on a team? Do you have a full-time job, and require a school that can accommodate your work schedule? Do you prefer a short-term or long-term program?
Also take time to consider your career goals, and decide how a school can help get you where you want to be. Do you need specific certifications, coursework, or on-the-job training to get into your desired field? What degree-level do you need to obtain, and does the school offer programs at that level? What skills do you need to develop to reach your career goal? Does the healthcare school you are considering offer career advice, internship experience, or job networking for its students?
- Decide which fields of study are of most interest to you.
Once you decide what you need from a healthcare school, it is important to consider which career path is of most interest to you. Most colleges will offer specialized majors for students interested in dedicated areas of healthcare, such as nursing, dental hygiene, and public health. Before committing to a school, ensure that it offers the program (or potential programs) that appeals most to you.
If you have dreams of becoming a nurse practitioner, for example, ensure that you choose a school that offers nursing degrees at an Associate, Bachelor’s, and Master’s level. If you want to work specifically with children, the elderly, or work with larger populations, know that there are various healthcare degrees dedicated to these interests as well – including occupational therapy and public health.
If you are not certain about your desired career path, choose a school that offers an array of program offerings in health. At Goodwin College, for example, our healthcare majors range from medical assisting to medical billing and coding, vision to respiratory care, nursing to public health, and more. We also offer a general health science degree, which can prepare you for a diversity of occupations such as environmental health and healthcare administration.
If you are not confident in your choice or do not feel ready to commit to a long-term program, you might also consider using a shorter educational path as a stepping stone into the healthcare field. A phlebotomy certificate program, for example, can be completed in a single semester and will lead you into a thriving healthcare position, collecting and testing blood samples. You can then choose to continue your career down the road, as a medical assistant, nurse, or other healthcare professional.
- Consider the flexibility of the program offerings.
Convenience and flexibility are key when choosing the right healthcare college – and you deserve one that offers classes on your schedule. Whether you work full-time or part-time, have a family to care for or other important obligations, it can be hard to commit to round-the-clock schooling. That is why choosing a flexible program is key. At Goodwin, you’ll find convenient class times that actually fit into your schedule – offered on days, evenings, and weekends, on campus, online, or a combination of the two. We’re always willing to work with you and design a schedule meets your needs.
In choosing a school, don’t forget to inquire about wait times and enrollment. If you are eager to jump into the healthcare field and start a career in as short a time as possible, do not settle for long wait lists or short enrollment periods. You deserve to get into a healthcare school and the healthcare field without obstacles in your way. If you are interested in applying to Goodwin College, rest assured we accept applications up to three times per year. And, in general, there are no wait lists for enrollment.
- Think location.
The last factor to consider in choosing a healthcare school is location. Not only should you think about convenience, but also about the potential of the area surrounding the school. Are there hospitals or clinics near the school? Is the school located in a city that is near major medical facilities?
Connecticut has approximately 50 hospitals in the state – and some of the top-ranked are right in the Hartford area. Choosing a school that is nearby one of these thriving settings can put you closer to the cutting-edge of healthcare, especially if the school has professional connections with the facilities nearby. With Goodwin’s prime location in East Hartford, we have developed professional relationships with several healthcare leaders in Connecticut, making us a top choice for healthcare education.
To learn about earning your healthcare degree at Goodwin College, please call 800-889-3282 today.
Goodwin College is a nonprofit institution of higher education and is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), formerly known as the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). Goodwin College was founded in 1999, with the goal of serving a diverse student population with career-focused degree programs that lead to strong employment outcomes.