As someone looking to dedicate their life to serving others, you want a degree that will equip you with the skills and knowledge to make a meaningful impact. Luckily, several degrees can provide exactly that. Whether you’re interested in healthcare, education, social services, or another field, one of these degrees may be the springboard to dive into the field of your choice. With the training and knowledge you acquire, you can help people overcome their challenges and live more fulfilling lives.
6 Degrees for Those Who Want to Help Others
A degree in social work provides the skills to assist people facing challenges such as poverty, addiction, unemployment, disability, and abuse.
As a social worker, you will also learn how to build relationships with clients, as well as how to work collaboratively with other professionals in the field. You will develop skills in crisis intervention, advocacy, and community organizing and learn how to navigate complex systems to help clients access necessary resources. Additionally, you will gain an understanding of social justice issues and learn how to address systemic problems that contribute to social inequality and injustice.
Coursework covers human development, social welfare policy, research methods, and social work practice. Hands-on field experience, known as internships or practicums, provides opportunities to apply your knowledge under the guidance of experienced social workers.
By earning an MSW degree, you can further advance into careers such as social worker, counselor, healthcare case manager, and community outreach coordinator.
To become a nurse, you must earn a nursing degree, such as an associate’s degree in nursing (ADN) or a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN). Nursing degrees teach you the knowledge and skills to care for the sick and injured correctly.
ADN takes 2-3 years and prepares you to take the NCLEX-RN to become a Registered Nurse (RN). Core nursing topics like anatomy, physiology, biology, chemistry, and pharmacology are covered. With an ADN, you can work as an RN in hospitals, nursing homes, and home health agencies. A BSN takes four years and provides more in-depth education in critical thinking, leadership, and community health. Hospitals and healthcare facilities prefer BSN candidates. It prepares you to advance into leadership roles like nurse manager or nurse practitioner.
With a nursing degree and an RN license, you can assess patient needs, develop individualized care plans, and administer medications and treatments. You will gain expertise in patient education, teaching patients and their families about their health conditions and how to manage them at home. Furthermore, you will learn to work collaboratively with other healthcare professionals to ensure patients receive comprehensive and coordinated care.
A degree in psychology will provide you with insights into human thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. You will develop skills to assess psychological, emotional, and learning problems and determine effective solutions.
Coursework typically includes classes on developmental, social, and abnormal psychology. You will study psychological disorders and mental illnesses, as well as human development across the lifespan. Courses in research methods, statistics, and psychological testing are also standard.
With a psychology degree, you can pursue careers such as a psychologist, counselor, social worker, or psychiatrist. These roles involve helping people cope with challenges, mental health issues, and life transitions.
A degree in counseling will provide you with the skills to help guide others through complex life challenges and transitions.
Coursework will focus on theories of counseling and human development, as well as practical skills. You will learn active listening, empathy, problem-solving, and how to develop constructive interventions. Classes in ethics, diversity, and counseling techniques are central to the curriculum.
With a counseling degree, you can pursue careers like:
- School counselor: helps students develop social/emotional skills and plan for higher education or careers.
- Substance abuse counselor: helps clients recover from addiction.
- Rehabilitation counselor: assists people with disabilities or injuries to gain independence and employment.
- Mental health counselor: supports those with depression, anxiety, trauma, grief, or relationship issues.
Counseling degrees provide the opportunity to help clients gain insight into themselves and their behaviors, develop coping strategies, set goals, and find solutions to problems.
A degree in education prepares you for a career shaping young minds. As an educator, you will teach students critical thinking and social skills to help them reach their full potential.
With a bachelor’s degree in education, you can become a teacher at the elementary, middle, or high school level. You will learn instructional techniques tailored to the age group you want to teach. Coursework covers fundamentals like educational psychology, teaching methods, and curriculum development. Supervised student teaching provides hands-on experience in creating lesson plans, leading a classroom, and evaluating student progress.
With a master’s or doctoral degree in education, you can advance into leadership roles like principal, superintendent, or professor. Graduate programs explore education policy, administration, and theory in greater depth. Research skills gained at this level prepare you to introduce innovative teaching practices or publish studies advancing the field of education.
Whether in a traditional classroom or online, educators have a profound and lasting impact on students. If you are passionate about helping children and young adults reach their potential, a career as an educator may be the correct choice.
In law school, you will develop critical thinking, analytical, and communication skills that translate across various legal career paths.
The core curriculum covers contracts, property, torts, and civil procedure, and students also take elective courses in areas of interest, such as tax law, environmental law, or intellectual property.
Law schools teach vital skills beyond legal knowledge, including logical reasoning, critical reading, and effective oral and written advocacy. Moot court simulations teach public speaking and argument development, and legal research and writing classes impart the ability to analyze case law and draft persuasive legal briefs.
As you have seen, there are many rewarding degrees and career paths for those dedicated to helping others. Whether you feel drawn to education, healthcare, social services, or another field, following your calling can lead to a life of purpose and service. By pursuing one of these degrees, you open yourself up to making a meaningful difference in your community and beyond. The road ahead may not always be easy, but know that you have chosen a life of impact — and the gratitude of those you help along the way will be your greatest reward.