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Best Jobs: UC San Diego Study Reveals Top Ten Hot Careers for College Graduates

LA JOLLA, Calif., May 20, 2011 — In a graduation season of high unemployment rates, a new career path study from the University of California San Diego Extension reveals some of the hottest career plan options for college graduates in this recovering economy. The full study is available at

1. Healthcare case management. Case managers are healthcare advocates who — through a collaborative process of assessment, planning, facilitation, and advocacy — help patients understand their current health status, what they can do about it and why those treatments are important. In this way, case managers guide patients and provide cohesion to other professionals in the healthcare delivery team, enabling their clients to achieve goals more effectively and efficiently. According to a January 2011 survey, the number of case managers working in hospital admissions offices doubled from 2010 to 2011.

2. Financial examination and internal auditing. Financial collapses and scandals in the last few years involving the banking and insurance industries means more companies are having the books scrutinized. Enter the financial examiners, the forensic accountants of the business world. The Bureau of Labor Statistics is predicting 41 percent growth. Aspiring financial examiners and internal auditors can expect continued job growth as a result of changes in financial laws, regulations, and requirements. In addition, jobs in this field will become available as financial examiners retire, move into other positions, or leave the field completely.

3. Mobile media. Today's four billion mobile phone users outnumber both Internet users and land-line owners. Cell phones and other mobile devices are now multifunction devices that enable users to surf the Web, listen to music, download podcasts, use maps, access global positioning satellites, shoot and send photos and videos, and send text messages. With the countless new software applications, the number of ways to use smart phones is exploding.

4. Healthcare information technology. As technology increases, so does the need for health information technicians to use and maintain patient data that is vital for quality healthcare and to keep all medical records organized and confidential. Technicians are needed for emerging jobs, such as healthcare integration engineer, healthcare systems analyst, clinical IT consultant, and technology support specialist.

5. Data mining. Looking for a needle in a haystack is a good analogy for data mining jobs. Data mining is the technique of extracting specific types of information or patterns from large databases, such as data warehouses. Advanced statistical methods sift through large volumes of data, providing answers to questions that were once too time-consuming.

6. Geriatric healthcare. The growing population of seniors continues to have a major impact on careers in health care. As the numbers of aging baby boomers increase, so does the demand for certain healthcare jobs and services, including nursing, personal care and home healthcare.

7. Occupational health and safety. Many employees are adding safety expertise as a "value added" skill to make them more likely to be hired or retained in a tight job market. Specialists are needed to cope with technological advances in safety equipment and threats, changing regulations, and increasing public expectations. Employment growth reflects overall business growth and continuing self-enforcement of government and company regulations.

8. Spanish/English translation and interpretation. For those completely bilingual in Spanish and English, these highly marketable language skills open doors to new careers. The key is to gain experience through practical internships in specialized fields such as law, medicine and business.

9. Sustainable business practices and the greening of all jobs. By the mid-21st century, all jobs will be green jobs. Organizations today must address potential regulation changes and look for business growth opportunities in the new era of sustainable environmental economics.

10. Teaching English as a foreign language. Interest in English teaching positions abroad continues to mushroom. College graduates can find teaching jobs abroad, with travel as an added perk.

About UC San Diego Extension (

UC San Diego Extension is recognized nationally and internationally for linking the public to expert professionals and the knowledge resources of the University of California. As the continuing education and public programs arm of the university, UC San Diego Extension educates approximately 56,000 enrollees a year, which translates to over 26,000 students in more than 4,900 courses. Through UCSD-TV, 1 million San Diego homes enjoy daily access to an abundance of useful ideas, creative minds and provocative thinkers. Although a part of the university since 1966, Extension receives no state support and relies on the funding generated from fees, contracts, grants, sponsors and donors for its annual budget of approximately $35 million.

Media contact:
Henry DeVries

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