40 Alternative Jobs for Teachers Wanting a Career Change

By Indeed Editorial Team

July 15, 2021

Whether you are a retired teacher looking for a new career opportunity or a current teacher interested in changing career paths, there are several jobs in all types of industries that benefit from the skills acquired as a teacher. Knowing the types of positions you can use your teaching skills to be successful in can help you find a rewarding new career path. In this article, we discuss several jobs for former teachers, with salary insights and common job duties for each.

Jobs for former teachers

Here are several career options for former teachers to consider:

1. Occupational therapist assistant

National average salary: $418 per week

Primary duties: Assist occupational therapists in implementing treatment plans designed to help patients recover, develop, improve and maintain skills needed for daily living and working.

2. Life skills trainer

National average salary: $13.02 per hour

Primary duties: Teach clients recovering from illness, injury or disability the basic life skills needed to accomplish and manage everyday tasks, such as cooking, caring for personal hygiene and managing personal finances.

3. Activities director

National average salary: $13.96 per hour

Primary duties: Oversee the planning and coordination of recreational and therapeutic activities for seniors living in retirement communities, assisted living facilities and other healthcare settings.

4. Photographer

National average salary: $14.40 per hour

Primary duties: Use a combination of artistic talent and technical skill to capture pictures of people, places and things. Photographers also often edit the pictures they take for their clients.

5. Medical assistant

National average salary: $15.10 per hour

Primary duties: Assist physicians by greeting patients and escorting them to examination rooms, collecting medical histories and personal information, checking vital signs, handling insurance and patient billing, answering phone calls, educating patients about their diagnosis and treatment plans, and scheduling appointments.

6. Event planner

National average salary: $15.50 per hour

Primary duties: Plan and coordinate all aspects of a client's special event, such as birthday parties, weddings, anniversary parties, bridal showers, baby showers and more. Event planners work with their clients to understand their vision for an event and help them make that vision a reality.

7. Babysitter/Nanny

National average salary: $16.08 per hour

Primary duties: Provide care to children while their parents or guardians are away. Babysitters and private nannies may be responsible for caring for a child's personal needs, planning activities, providing transportation to and from school and activities, and helping with homework.

8. Curator

National average salary: $16.84 per hour

Primary duties: Manage collections of art and artifacts in museums. The responsibilities of a curator vary based on the museum they work for but typically include acquiring items for a museum's collection, caring for museum displays and providing information about the displays to museum visitors.

9. Substance abuse counselor

National average salary: $17.16 per hour

Primary duties: Provide emotional and therapeutic support to individuals seeking recovery from addiction and substance abuse issues through the use of one-on-one therapy. Find and work through the root cause of their addiction and make referrals to recovery programs.

10. Dental assistant

National average salary: $17.65 per hour

Primary duties: Assist dentists by sterilizing and organizing the tools they need to work on a patient, taking X-rays, managing records, answering phones and scheduling appointments.

11. Academic advisor

National average salary: $42,108 per year

Primary duties: Help students identify their strengths and interests and determine the type of educational courses they should take to pursue a career path based on their skills and interests.

12. Tutor

National average salary: $21.31 per hour

Primary duties: Provide support to students who need help in a specific subject area by providing them additional instruction outside of the classroom, helping them with homework assignments and helping them prepare and study for assessments.

13. Personal trainer

National average salary: $21.43 per hour

Primary duties: Help clients identify and work toward achieving their personal fitness goals. Personal trainers may help their clients identify their goals, create customized fitness plans for their needs, teach them proper exercise techniques and form, motivate and encourage them to stay on track with their fitness plan and provide additional information about diet and nutrition to help them achieve their goals.

14. Child protection practitioner

National average salary: $46,882 per year

Primary duties: Work for child protective services to ensure the health, safety and well-being of children by investigating claims that a child is potentially living in a home where abuse or neglect is present. Work with families to identify and address risky behavior and parenting practices to improve the safety and well-being of the children.

15. Translator/Interpreter

National average salary: $22.57 per hour

Primary duties: Assist people who speak different languages with communicating with one another by converting conversations from one language to the other. Translators assist individuals with written communication and interpreters to assist individuals with spoken communication.

16. Social media manager

National average salary: $48,267 per year

Primary duties: Manage a company's social media profiles by creating engaging posts, managing social media marketing campaigns, building brand awareness and responding to comments.

17. Guidance counselor

National average salary: $48,991 per year

Primary duties: Provide emotional support and guidance to students throughout their education. Guidance counselors may help students identify their strengths and interests, work on emotional skills, manage conflict, create positive study habits, improve personal and social development, achieve academic success, prepare for college and make career choices.

18. Sales and marketing manager

National average salary: $49,834 per year

Primary duties: Promote a company's products and services and raise brand awareness in the market. Sales and marketing managers may be responsible for preparing and analyzing budgets, creating and implementing new sales strategies and advertisements, and ensuring the sales team meets their goals and quotas.

19. Editor

National average salary: $50,225 per year

Primary duties: Review material written for magazines, books, newspapers, websites and print advertisements. Make revisions as necessary and coordinate the publication of material.

20. Freelance writer

National average salary: $24.19 per hour

Primary duties: Work as an independent contractor for a variety of clients who pay for written content that can be used for blogs, website content, social media posts and print advertisements like brochures.

21. Paralegal

National average salary: $50,483 per year

Primary duties: Assist lawyers by organizing and maintaining files, drafting legal documents, conducting legal research, attending client meetings and depositions, handling client billing and performing other legal work as needed.

22. Educational consultant

National average salary: $51,122 per year

Primary duties: Provide academic guidance to students, parents, school boards, teachers and other academic organizations. Educational consultants may assess and make recommendations in areas such as academic curriculum, student activities, incorporation of technology and classroom improvements.

23. Human resources specialist

National average salary: $53,816 per year

Primary duties: Responsible for recruiting, interviewing, screening and onboarding new employees for a company, human resources specialists also maintain a positive work culture with employees, manage employee benefits and resolve employee complaints.

24. Accountant

National average salary: $54,451 per year

Primary duties: Work with businesses and organizations to ensure they are operating efficiently by creating budgets, preparing tax returns and reviewing and analyzing financial records, such as financial reports, bank statements and accounting records.

25. Executive assistant

National average salary: $54,701 per year

Primary duties: Assist executives by providing administrative and clerical support. The responsibilities of an executive assistant may vary depending on who they work for, but they typically include tasks like answering and responding to phone calls, scheduling appointments, managing a calendar, preparing meeting agendas, managing travel arrangements and sending memos.

26. Public relations manager

National average salary: $56,765 per year

Primary duties: Responsible for creating and maintaining a favorable public image for their company or client by raising brand awareness, responding to reviews and media requests, organizing press conferences and creating communications for the brand's accomplishments and views.

27. Sales representative

National average salary: $58,011 per year

Primary duties: Responsible for selling a company's goods or services to their consumers or other businesses and wholesalers. Sales representatives may be responsible for handling the entire sales cycle, including finding new customers, pitching the benefits and features of a product or service, closing the sale and maintaining a positive relationship between the company and the customer.

28. Librarian

National average salary: $28.11 per hour

Primary duties: Responsible for managing a library's materials by selecting, acquiring, classifying, cataloging, circulating and maintaining the library's collection of books, newspapers, magazines, movies and computers.

29. Financial advisor

National average salary: $66,393 per year

Primary duties: Help clients assess their financial needs and their short- and long-term financial goals, and create financial plans and strategies to help them reach those goals. Financial advisors may provide services like creating and analyzing budgets, selecting and managing investments, making insurance decisions and complying with tax laws.

30. Corporate trainer

National average salary: $66,886 per year

Primary duties: Work in corporate environments and provide new and existing employees with instruction on the knowledge or skills needed to be successful in the workplace. Corporate trainers may be responsible for creating training plans, providing employee training, creating training material and assessing employee progress during training.

31. Board-certified behavior analyst

National average salary: $68,339 per year

Primary duties: Prepare and conduct behavioral assessments and evaluations and work with other mental healthcare professionals to create comprehensive therapy plans. Board-certified behavior analysts may work in either research or in applied behavior analysis in which they apply principles learned through research into behavioral therapy services.

32. Research analyst

National average salary: $70,325 per year

Primary duties: Responsible for researching, analyzing, interpreting and presenting data about their company and industry. Research analysts may focus on areas like accounting and finance, market trends and changes, business operations, customer satisfaction, market power, economics and more.

33. Registered nurse

National average salary: $33.93 per hour

Primary duties: Assist physicians in providing care and treatment to patients for a variety of health conditions. Registered nurses may be responsible for checking and monitoring patient vital signs, administering medication, monitoring a patient's progress in recovery and educating patients and their families about their diagnosis and treatment plan.

34. Sales manager

National average salary: $75,209 per year

Primary duties: Responsible for leading and motivating a team of sales representatives to meet their sales goals and quotas.

35. Insurance agent

National average salary: $80,023 per year

Primary duties: Assist clients with selecting insurance products to meet their needs, explain features and benefits of insurance policies, screen clients for eligibility, close the sale and complete insurance applications.

36. Psychologist

National average salary: $86,275 per year

Primary duties: Assist clients with making changes to their behavior, provide counseling services to improve emotional well-being and diagnose and treat mental, emotional and behavioral disorders.

37. Attorney

National average salary: $89,434 per year

Primary duties: Provide clients with legal advice and represent their clients' legal rights in criminal and civil cases in court. Attorneys prepare legal documents, conduct legal research and appear in court to advocate for their clients' rights.

38. Realtor

National average salary: $90,423 per year

Primary duties: Assist individuals with the residential or commercial property buying and selling process by helping them find or list properties, taking them to showings, preparing documentation and advocating for their clients' best interests throughout the purchasing or selling process.

39. Actuary

National average salary: $107,621 per year

Primary duties: Analyze financial risks and consequences through the use of statistics and financial theory. Actuaries study the possibilities of uncertain future events to help businesses and organizations make financial decisions.

40. Principal

National average salary: $110,966 per year

Primary duties: Manage major administrative tasks and lead a school to success by planning the strategic direction of the school, developing standardized curricula, encouraging parent involvement, monitoring student progress, assessing teacher effectiveness, creating and implementing policies and procedures, and supervising the actions of students, teachers and staff.

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