So, do you want a new job? Here’s how to retrain | national news

The tens of millions of workers who quit their jobs during the “Great Resignation” – 4.4 million in September alone, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics – will not necessarily need to retrain before they land their next job. use. But those who want a whole new career may find little financial help and social support to learn the skills they need for the future, according to labor experts.

Erin Hatton, associate professor of sociology at the University of Buffalo in New York City, says the pandemic has caused particularly harsh conditions for workers in contact with consumers, including the risk of COVID-19 exposure and liability to enforce the mask on customers, which has created an “undue burden on workers with whom they are simply unwilling to deal.

Workers tired by the pandemic are questioning the value of their work, says Hatton, and that self-reflection may prompt workers to change fields – or at least attempt to do so.

“It may be easier said than done,” she says. “Finding out how to get the training you need to do it can be tricky. “

But will the “Great Resignation” lead to a “great retraining” for workers who want to access jobs with better wages, benefits and working conditions?

It’s doubtful, say experts like Anthony Carnevale, director of the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. He attributes it to this: The United States is not very good at retraining workers.

WHY YOU MAY NEED TO RESTITUTE TO GET A NEW CAREER

Changing careers often requires a new degree (a diploma or certificate), which means you’ll need some type of higher education. Employers in all areas of work require workers to have certain credentials, even in areas that were previously accessible without.

Consider, for example, auto mechanics. Carnevale says this profession now requires a greater need for skills or training, both in mechanics and electronics.

“It used to be that you would open the hood of your car and you could pull out a key and play with this and that, but you can’t do that anymore,” Carnevale says. “There really is an increase in skill requirements for a lot of reasons, but a lot of it is based on technology. “

MANY OBSTACLES TO REFORMATION

Hatton says that “making a meaningful career change” is particularly difficult for those who don’t have the time and money to train in a new field while balancing their obligations like paying rent or paying a salary. mortgage. Caring for the elderly and children can also increase the burden.

The challenges of retraining are largely due to a lack of social support, and it is up to the individual to find that out for themselves, says Katie Spiker, executive director of government affairs for the National Skills Coalition, an organization in non-profit that aims to improve skills. American workers in all industries.

She and other experts say federal investments and policies are key to tackling unemployment, which has yet to hit pre-pandemic lows, and getting workers up to speed.

“We have a history of seeing really strong results for workers when they can access skills retraining to meet the demands in their area,” said Spiker. She adds that additional support is also helpful, including access to childcare services and help with basic needs.

YOUR REFORMATION OPTIONS

Don’t give up hope for a better job, but know that the road ahead is not necessarily easy.

When considering your options, you’ll want to consider whether the job exists in the area where you need to be, want to be, or can be, says Pamela Egan, director of the Labor Management-Partnerships Program for the University of California, Berkeley Labor Center.

Start with your state workforce development investment office, which provides information on training opportunities, suggests Egan. She says that the system has its flaws, but that it is accessible to all since it is financed by public money. Your state might also have “high-level training partnerships” between high-quality employers in a particular labor market and workforce education and training programs, Egan says.

Your ability to successfully enter a new field will depend on the degree programs available and your ability to afford them. Additional recycling options include:

– Employers who provide training. Yvette Lee, a human resources advisor at the Society for Human Resource Management, says employers use many approaches to train workers to fill positions, including on-the-job training and tuition assistance.

– Traditional college or higher school. The College Scorecard, a US Department of Education data tool, allows users to rate college programs and includes information on graduation rates, costs, debt, and student outcomes.

– Community college programs. Two-year public schools are generally eligible for student aid and offer vocational training programs and associate’s degrees. The programs are inexpensive and eligible for federal assistance.

– Short-term trade schools and certificate programs. Trade schools may be the fastest and most streamlined option for retraining and moving from credentials to licensing to employment. But schools vary in quality and performance, and can also be expensive or ineligible for financial aid. University scorecard includes training program s who accept Pell Grants and participate in Federal Workforce Development programs.

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This article was provided to The Associated Press by the NerdWallet personal finance website. Anna Helhoski is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: anna@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @AnnaHelhoski.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

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