UCLA Extension Offers Life-Long Learning,

Professional Development to Meet Top Hiring Trends and Career Strategies for 2012

Is career advancement in 2012 on your holiday wish list? Are you in or considering a switch to a job within the occupations projected for the highest growth next year? Are you preparing to remain relevant in your profession?

UCLA Extension, a leading continuing higher education institution, is ideally suited to assist working professionals around the globe obtain their career advancement or career-switching goals in 2012. 

“As the economy continues to recover, there will be both new opportunities for advancement as well as increased pressure on individuals to remain current in their chosen fields and to meet the increasing demands of their profession or industry,” said Dean Cathy Sandeen. “UCLA Extension continues to develop cutting edge classes and professional certificates programs across a range of occupations to meet these needs.”

In reviewing various government and private industry reports, UCLA Extension highlights below just five occupations with current or projected strong hiring trends as well as other growth careers that align with the institution’s course and certificate offerings:

  •  Health care and social assistance: The second largest field for job growth in California in 2011 with similar patterns expected in 2012.  According to the U.S. Department of Labor, opportunities for medical and health services managers are projected to grow by 16 percent through 2018. UCLA Extension’s Health Sciences offers both science prerequisite courses for certain pre-med fields such as nursing and denistry, as well as classes in management and leadership. One of the 20 fastest-growing careers is in alcohol and drug abuse counseling.
  • Information technology. Among some of the greatest job gains in 2011, this field covers web development, computer system analysts, information security, database management and more. Certainly, well-publicized security breaches in 2011 placed greater emphasis on the need for programmers and others specializing in this field.
  • Engineering.  Salaries continue to climb for graduating students with engineering degrees, and the range of engineering needs continues to expand.  Relatively new engineering specialty areas such as sustainability and recycling will continue to see growth as green practices become mainstream among all businesses. As Southern California aerospace firms secure more contracts, specialties such as spacecraft system design will be in greater demand. 
  • Management. The Department of Labor projects an 11 percent job growth through 2018 in general management jobs and companies continue to see more professionals with project management experience. UCLA Extension offers a variety of courses and certificates to enhance management skills including, contract management, cost estimating and pricing, IT management, project management, and supply chain management.
  • Financial Planning.  With a 30 percent projected job growth rate by 2018, personal financial planning certificates continue to be a popular choice at UCLA Extension.

Another trend to monitor in 2012: More online offerings offered through university-based continuing education institutions.  The reason: Professionals seeking to boost their careers and remain current in the workplace are increasingly finding greater benefits from the shorter timeframes and lower costs involved in a certificate program that can be obtained online. 

“The world is certainly moving faster and faster. Certificate programs offer busy adults the opportunity to update their skills, network, develop a personal interest, boost their careers or change fields entirely,” Sandeen said. “What’s more, certificate programs tend to be geared toward practical application rather than academic knowledge; and they are scheduled at times convenient for working professionals.”

Registration is open for the Winter quarter, which begins Jan. 9, 2012. 


About UCLA Extension

UCLA Extension is the continuing education division of the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). We offer courses evenings and weekends in Westwood and downtown Los Angeles, plus online classes available around the globe. Courses include business, arts, engineering, information technology, entertainment studies, public policy, public health, the humanities and more. Explore UCLA Extension: uclaextension.edu.

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