INA, Ill. (Aug. 6, 2020) — When shelter-in-place orders took hold in the United States this spring, many jobs were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
From February to April the unemployment rate in the United States jumped from 3.5% to 14.7%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In Illinois, the unemployment rate peaked at 17.2% in April and remained at 14.6% as of June. But as the economy slowed down, not everyone was forced to give up their livelihood. Several careers proved to be essential in this time of need. So, if you are looking for a vocation that can withstand a global crisis, consider the following occupations.
1. Truck driving
The demand for consumable goods didn’t slow down with the pandemic, and neither did the logistics industry. Companies worked hard to maintain business as usual for their customers and that meant a lot of trucks on the road moving product. Truck drivers helped keep supplies moving during a critical time, and with a growing trend away from brick and mortar stores, the demand for their services isn’t slowing down anytime soon. BLS predicts the job market for truck drivers will continue to grow by about 5% over the next decade. And RLC has the ability to help train people to fill those needs. The truck driver training program can be completed in one semester. A certificate from RLC can have you on the road and earning money in just a few months with a median pay of $45,440 per year for truck drivers in Southern Illinois, according to BLS. Help keep America moving. See how truck driving is the right career fit for you.
An integral part of battling the COVID-19 pandemic, nurses and health care workers around the country became everyday heroes for their efforts on the front lines of the crisis. Many states even asked nurses to come out of retirement to help meet the need for health care workers. And the nursing career path was already an in-demand choice for students before the pandemic. It has long been one of Rend Lake College’s most popular programs. A degree from RLC sets up future nurses with a multitude of options in the health care field with the promise of a good salary and plenty of job opportunities. The 2019 median pay for registered nurses in Southern Illinois was $58,3120 per year and the job market is expected to grow at 12% in the United States over the next decade, according to BLS. Want to help save lives? See how you can get started at RLC. Testing and entry into the Nursing program begins this fall.
3. Information Technology
Technology has been growing rampantly over the past several decades and the shelter-in-place initiatives just reinforced how integral tech has become in our everyday lives. It’s the various IT careers that keep our technology infrastructure running and protected. Demand for development, design, engineering and analysis for computers and IT systems will only continue to grow and Rend Lake College has the programs to help train the next generation of workers. With degrees in computer programming, computer science, IT database specialist or IT security specialist, RLC has a multitude of options for anyone looking to break into the industry. The degrees of certificates can set someone up to work immediately or continue their education at the next level. And it is a high paying job market with a median salary of $89,570 per year for computer programmers in Southern Illinois, according to BLS. Give yourself a leg up in the thriving field of technology. See what Rend Lake College has to offer.
The classroom might look a little different, but education is still just as prominent as ever during the pandemic. Teachers had to change on the fly to an online environment to accommodate school closings this semester, but they continued to work. And they will return to the classroom soon. Rend Lake College can help get the educators of tomorrow trained to teach our future generations. With degrees in Elementary, Secondary and Early Childhood Education, RLC has paths to any level of learning. And with a teacher shortage across the nation, the demand for qualified candidates is prevalent. For those staying in Illinois, the starting salary for teachers is going to be $40,000 per year very soon. Want to help shape young minds? Teaching may be the path for you. And RLC can help get you started.
5. EMT – Paramedic
Like the nursing profession, EMT and paramedic workers have been integral at helping save lives during the COVID-19 pandemic. The need for more health care workers in any capacity has been in high demand. In the early stages of the outbreak, local EMTs were recruited to assist in New York state where the virus was spreading at a rapid pace. But even without a global pandemic, the need for more qualified EMTs and paramedics is in high demand. It’s an industry that is showing faster than average growth, according to BLS data. And it’s also a program where you can get to work after just one semester at RLC. The EMT Occupational Certificate can put you to work in the field right away. If you would like to advance your skills even further, RLC has both an occupational certificate and a degree program for those looking to become a licensed paramedic. Those interested in this career path can get started on Monday by gaining the skills needed to become an EMT-Basic.