The human services field has increased in importance as poverty and the continued challenge of underserved communities have created a need for those who provide support and aide to those in less privileged circumstances.
Earning a Bachelor of Arts in Human Services can lead to a variety of interesting jobs for many different employers. They include government-operated community service agencies, nonprofit organizations or social services at large hospitals and other healthcare facilities.
It’s an important job in the 21st century that has a direct impact on people’s lives.
While prosperity has expanded worldwide, issues of poverty, underserved communities and human rights issues continue. Human services leaders face these issues head on, working to better the circumstances for those who need support.
This includes identifying areas where support is needed, developing programs to address those needs and managing the implementation of those programs.
It’s In Demand
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects an 18% increase in the number of human services managers by 2026. Across all fields in social work and human services, the BLS projects almost 500,000 new jobs over the next decade. As needs grow, so does the demand for qualified professionals who have the skills and knowledge to address complex issues.
A job in human services directly impacts the lives of others in ways that few other jobs offer. Human services professionals also can work with specific populations, including children, teens and families. An aging U.S. population also has increased the need for those who specialize in caring for the elderly, who are staying more active than previous generations but also require support and services.
A Variety of Jobs
Human resource professionals work in a variety of settings. Nonprofits that focus on different areas, including poverty, human rights and the needs of children, are numerous. Community centers offer healthcare guidance and other support for underserved communities. Social workers help families with day-to-day issues that often confront those in lower-income communities. The variety of jobs is larger than almost any other profession.
The Right Skills
Human services typically attracts workers who have a certain mix of knowledge and skills. Some of the traits and skills of human services professionals include:
- Strong communication
- Organization and planning
- Time management
- A sense of responsibility
While many human services professionals bring all or some of these skills to the table, all of them can be developed in a quality degree program.
The Right Education
A four-year human services degree, such as the one offered by the University of Massachusetts, offers graduates the training and education needed to take on the top jobs in the field.
These positions require all the skills mentioned above, as well as an education in how to manage a human services agency or a large department within such an agency. The ability to manage people well, handle budget issues and develop and implement successful programs are key skills a student will acquire in a human services degree program.
A career in human services is challenging. But the satisfaction in supporting the less fortunate in society makes a career in this field attractive to those with the right mix of skills, dedication and education.