11 Jobs for Professionals Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing
Updated June 20, 2023
Having a disability doesn't define your capabilities as a professional, and there are a variety of jobs and employers that provide flexible options for professionals who are deaf or hard of hearing.
In this article, we provide tips on how to find jobs when you're deaf or hard of hearing and list 11 jobs that work well for deaf professionals and individuals who are hard of hearing.
How to find jobs when you have a hearing loss
Review these steps to determine how to find jobs when you have hearing loss:
1. Research job services
There are several job service websites that help professionals who are deaf or hard of hearing find jobs and determine the best ways to get job offers or address hearing loss concerns with current or potential employers. The National Association of the Deaf and the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) provide beneficial insights and advice on how individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing can find work opportunities.
2. Search for disability programs
Another effective way to search and find potential job opportunities is to research which employers offer the best benefits and opportunities for those with disabilities. You can also look at employee reviews, company website information and job openings to aid your decision.
3. Ask about opportunities
If you find a job you want to apply for but the job description doesn't include information about benefits or disability opportunities, contact the hiring manager or HR department by email. Discuss your desire to apply and your desire to learn more about work opportunities for individuals with hearing loss. You can also include your resume and cover letter for further consideration.
4. Address your hearing loss
You can use your cover letter to discuss your professional qualifications more in-depth, but you can also use it as a platform to address your hearing loss, what you've learned and how you can contribute to the role in a unique way.
11 jobs for people with hearing loss
Here are 11 jobs that people who are deaf or hard of hearing could thrive in, with salary expectations, job responsibilities and education requirements. For the most up-to-date salary information from Indeed and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, click on the links provided.
National average salary: $39,180 per year
Primary duties: Sonographers work in health care facilities and use sonography equipment to complete ultrasounds on patients and take images throughout the process. After appointments, sonographers send images via email to the patient's primary physician for them to review.
Related: Learn About Being a Sonographer
2. Pastry chef
National average salary: $46,825 per year
Primary duties: Pastry chefs work in restaurant kitchens, bakeries or patisseries and specialize in preparing, baking and decorating a range of different pastry items for customers to enjoy. Pastry chefs create food items like croissants, quiches, pasties, eclairs, cream horns, tarts and pies.
Related: Learn About Being a Pastry Chef
National median salary: $49,120 per year
Primary duties: Artists paint murals, designs and other items on walls or canvases for clients. This is a great role for individuals who have a desire to be creative. Artists can complete custom projects for clients or sell their work to art galleries, local shops or online stores.
National average salary: $49,672 per year
Primary duties: Photographers use photography equipment to capture scenes of nature, city life, human portraits and other subjects to sell. Photographers use their eye for photography to communicate themes, personalities or ideas in a visual way.
National average salary: $49,969 per year
Primary duties: Tradespeople specialize in carpentry, stonework, welding, plumbing, electricity, landscaping and other areas to promote construction projects or renovations for commercial and residential properties. Trades professionals perform the majority of work tasks by taking measurements, assembling structures and creating blueprints.
National average salary: $51,643 per year
Primary duties: IT technicians typically work in IT departments and oversee the installation, repair and maintenance of computer hardware or software for company employees. Individuals with hearing loss can thrive in IT technician roles as they need to complete a variety of visual tasks to troubleshoot problems and install computer components.
Related: Learn About Being an IT Technician
National average salary: $55,148 per year
Primary duties: Customer support representatives provide advice and resources to customers. Employees with hearing loss can communicate with customers via chatrooms or video relay services.
National average salary: $60,051 per year
Primary duties: Social media managers work for companies to oversee social media channels. This includes creating post schedules, engaging with followers and answering questions in the comment section, creating stories and ensuring brand unity across all channels.
National median salary: $61,765 per year
Primary duties: Teachers plan instruction, teach classes and care for students in elementary, middle and high school. College professors also take on the role of student advising and serve on committees. Schools and universities often seek teachers who are deaf to teach American Sign Language to students as a secondary language.
Related: 15 Sign Language Careers
National average salary: $63,006 per year
Primary duties: Fitness instructors teach fitness classes like yoga, pilates, cycling, kickboxing, barre or aerobics. Deaf fitness instructors can specialize in teaching other individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to build a fitness community for the deaf community in their area.
National average salary: $69,587 per year
Primary duties: Sign language interpreters work with people who are deaf or hearing impaired by translating sign language into spoken words and spoken words into sign language. In the United States, most sign language interpreters use American Sign Language.
Deaf interpreters are specialists who provide interpreting and translation services in ASL and other visual and tactual communication forms used by people who are deaf, hard of hearing and deaf-blind.
Read more: How To Become an ASL Interpreter in 6 Steps
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