Teaching: chosen career change for university graduatesFeature of the week
Settling on a career for university graduates in their 20s can be difficult and many find themselves switching job roles and industries every half a year or so to try and find where they are happiest working.
For example, an English graduate might start a career in publishing chasing advertising and then move between two or three magazine publishers working in editorial roles before making a switch into digital marketing, either in outreach and PR or writing copy.
They could move back into publishing, to another marketing company, branch out into recruitment or focus on the career change many 20-somethings, unsure of what to do, go for: teaching.
So, if you are advertising a position on EduStaff, searching for another teacher to join your team, be prepared to interview a high number of 20-something candidates who have abandoned a variety of careers and opted to train as a teacher.
But why are so many people making this move into education? It’s not considered an easy career path after all (no matter what parents say about teachers having six weeks off in the summer). Well, it could be for some of the following reasons.
Teaching is considered one of the most secure job paths, according to an article written by the Guardian. There is high supply and demand for teachers due to the pressure of the job, so those training should be able to secure a job in the industry quickly. This quick transition and job security once in the role will encourage those in their 20s to move into education.
Those who have been to university are still in “learning mode”, teaching allows them to carry on being educated, on top of teaching and inspiring others. Education is of great importance to graduates and so teaching will feel like a natural career choice after attempting other less fulfilling roles.
Teaching is a creative job role. Of course, you do have to follow particular government guidelines but the best teachers are the ones who get creative with lesson plans and activities to really encourage children’s learning. Young graduates are probably the best individuals for such a job, as they have plenty of energy and can still relate to the trials of trying to learn something new.
Pay and progression
The starting salary for a teacher is £22,023 (£27,543 in London) and there are natural pay scale and departmental progression bands in place that cannot be readily found in other professions. Other benefits include discount in restaurants and shops around the country with the National Union of Teachers.
PR and marketing might be glamorous industries to work in, if you find a role in a large company, but teaching is definitely for the more settled individual who takes real pride in planning and work. Those who have attempted other careers might see teaching as a way of settling down in a career. Many become attached to the school they initially work in, so it’s a great career for those who would eventually like to be in one place.
Yes, you do get quite a lot of time off when you become a teacher but the holidays are simply when you can balance work and family time nicely, an advantage for those who might otherwise have had to work over the Christmas period.
Nevertheless, there are still lesson plans to be done, marking to complete and activities that need to be organised, plus the numerous training days you are required to attend during holidays. This is as well as constantly reading and keeping on top of new curriculum requirements.
So with these reasons in mind welcome those 20-something candidates with open arms into your vacant positions. Their motives are honest and they can provide a new perspective on teaching which your older staff might have lost over time.
Photos: Texas A&M University