If you’re hoping to make a career change it may be tempting to just jump ship, but most of us have responsibilities and bills to pay, so we can’t afford to do that. How can you safeguard your financial and home situation while getting into the career path you’ve been dreaming about?
Here are our best tips on how to make a career change while working a full-time job.
Clarify your goals
Do you know exactly what career changes you want to make, what you hope to accomplish, and how soon? Figuring this out in as much detail as possible is your first step. You can adjust the specifics later if you change your mind, but write down your goals right now:
Not very good: “I want to be working a new job by the end of next year.”
Better: “By fall semester of 2017 I want to be enrolled in night school for my BA in design so I can pursue a career in design by 2019.”
Use your goals to create a timeframe and short-term plans
Your next step is to put a plan in place so you can commit to setting things in motion. If you have small, incremental steps you can take already set out in front of you, it’s easier to stay on task. Make a list of your steps and short-term plans that you need to accomplish to achieve your goals. Here are some examples:
- Identify my current skill set and skills I still need to develop
- Determine educational/training needs I will have to achieve my goals and find out how I can meet those needs
- Identify schools and programs and apply to them
- Determine other local resources such as internships, volunteer opportunities and local businesses which could serve as resources
- Identify a list of “dream jobs” to help clarify my goals further
- Prioritize the steps you should be taking so that you can accomplish them efficiently in plenty of time
Now that you have a plan and some specific tasks to achieve, get organized and stay that way. Keep all of your career-pursuit plans and progress in one location—virtually in an app or your computer, or even in a paper notebook. Keep it with you always so you can devote spare moments to your career change; working full-time means you’ll need to find extra time here and there for your tasks.
Maximize your time with a smart school schedule
Anyone who works full-time and pursues a new career needs to maximize all available time; night classes at Platt College San Diego are perfect for students transitioning into new careers. At Platt there are as many evening courses as there are during the day, and multiple degrees offered: the associate of applied science degree in graphic design or digital media design, or the bachelor of science degree in media arts specializing in web design, 3D animation, digital video production, or visual effects and compositing.
Design classes at Platt begin at 6:00pm and run until 10:00pm, Monday through Thursday. Each six week class allows students to explore a subject in depth before moving on to the next topic. Some Platt College San Diego general education courses meet Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays; others meet Tuesdays and Thursdays only. For this reason these courses run from 6:00pm to 8:00pm, or from 8:30pm to 10:00pm.
All courses at Platt offer an unparalleled level of flexibility for the full-time working student looking to change careers.