Friday, February 18, 2011

One Year Programs for Good Paying Jobs

You don't need a four year degree, or even a two year degree, to get a good job. There are several good paying, in demand jobs that can be gotten after a year or less of training. Here are a few.

Chef: Becoming a chef, cook, food preparer, takes less than a year on average. You can enroll in a public junior college, or private culinary institute. Some big restaurants have on the job training or internships. Chefs can earn on average between $45,000 and $70,000 a year.

Medical Assistant: Health care jobs are in demand. Paraprofessionals are becoming even more desirable. Medical assistants can do a wide variety of medical office tasks, like insurance forms, secretary, set up, even minor medical tasks like vital signs. Private and public career colleges have medical assistant programs that are less than one year. Earning power: $30,000-$40,000 a year.

Pharmacy technicians: Pharmacy technicians work in pharmacies in drug stores and hospitals. They work filling drug orders and prescriptions under a registered pharmacist. Private and public career colleges have medical assistant programs that are less than one year. Earning power: $30,000-$40,000 a year.

Paralegal: The law profession is changing and paralegals are becoming quite popular. This one will be more than a year if you don't have a college degree now. But, if you do, then all you need is probably a paralegal certificate. If not, look at a two year program at a junior college. This may be more for a working adult looking to improve their job standing, or recently laid off. Earnings $50,000-$75,000 a year.

Graphic Designer: As the world moves to online media, graphic designers are going to increase in demand. You could probably learn this on your own using various programs, but you need a certificate or some portfolio to show some expertise. Some companies may have on the job training, offering jobs as assistants. Graphic designers can expect to earn about $35,000 a year.

>>5 jobs college students can get now.

>>Free college money help.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

When college students should not use credit cards.

College students are ripe for identity theft to begin with, as they live in an unsecured environment and share a lot of things. Like dorm rooms. College students like to have a little fun off campus as well. There are places and circumstances when you would not want to use a credit card, as the risk is increased.

Swap meets and flea markets. A lot of these booths that take credit cards do not have it hooked up electronically. If it is, over phone lines, etc., it may be secure. But many do the old fashioned way. With credit slips and carbon copies. This is very, very ripe for credit card abuse. If you do, be sure and get any carbon copy. Check out the establishment and determine if they look legit. Your personal information and credit card numbers are now on a piece of paper that may be found by many people. Even by accident.

Watch out for ATMs that are not a bank owned ATM. Major banks have ATMs on the outside of their banks. These are very secure. Use them if you need an ATM. Stand-alone ATMs at fairs and street corners, may not be owned by major bank and are not as secure. These are also more prone to getting the card swipe altered. If you must use one, look carefully at the card swipe and make sure it looks normal and not tampered with. Use your own bank's ATM and you will probably not be charged a large fee.

Anywhere you swipe your credit card, like gas stations, LOOK close to see if it has been tampered with. Look for tell-tale signs like wires and damage.

When traveling out of the country, like on Spring Break, use cash as much as possible. Large hotels and major businesses there probably is no risk in using a credit card. But small independent shops and restaurants have the same risks as the swap meets.

If you buy things online, make sure it is encrypted and secure with an https. If not, don't plug your credit card in. Some small businesses want a credit card number by email. Don't do it. Large retailers, and paypal, will always have a safe website. Also, don't use a credit card for anything while on a public wi-fi hotspot, like at Starbucks. It's not secure. This also includes buying stuff from your smartphone. Not as secure.

>>More tips for college students and credit cards.

>>Free college money help.