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The job market is far different than it was 50 years ago. For the workforce today, it is not unusual for an adult to switch careers multiple times. Dramatic, mid-life career changes are on the rise. According to CNBC, 49% of middle-aged workers have made a job shift in recent years with positive results to their work-life balance and overall contentment¹.

One career, in particular, has become a desirable opportunity for transition, teaching. With an estimated 150,000 jobs created yearly, obtaining a master’s of education can be rewarding². Although changing directions midway can be complicated and even intimidating, Mount Vernon Nazarene University is here to help you make a seamless transition. Below are five hurdles to overcome when making the switch to become an educator.

1. Lacking a Background in Education

Many potential students labor under the premise that they must have a related bachelor's degree in education to enter teaching. But that's not necessarily true for people looking to earn their professional educator license or even something more specialized such as an initial intervention specialist degree. In many states, the requirement is to only have completed an accredited bachelor's program.

Your desired content area is more important than a dedicated undergrad experience in education. During the certification process, most states are looking for you to demonstrate knowledge and proficiency in your area of specialization rather than the field of education in general. Never discount your professional experience either. For example, if you worked in a financial-adjacent career, it would be entirely feasible for you to teach mathematics or economics. Real-world skills make for great teachers!

2. A Confusing Certification Process

Taking classes is one thing; getting certified is another. Each state has its own licensing procedures. The lack of any central certification process can be confusing to aspiring teachers. Fortunately, Mount Vernon Nazarene University can help you sort through those requirements.

3. Steep Price of Education

The cost of college can be one of the most prohibitive factors when considering a career change into teaching. Mount Vernon Nazarene University sets its price per credit hour at an affordable rate and locks your tuition once you enroll. We want to see you achieve your dreams with our online master's degree in education.

In addition to our low relative costs, there are numerous avenues of financial aid that prospective students can pursue. From a FAFSA application for student aid to the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program, there are many options available to lower your costs. Financial aid is available to those who qualify.

4. No Time to Attend Classes

Pursuing a degree of any type is an undertaking that requires time and dedication. This can be especially problematic for professionals who want to make a mid-career change. Saddled with responsibilities like mortgage and family, the average person can't quit their old career cold turkey and attend classes full time.

Our programs at Mount Vernon Nazarene University are designed with busy, mid-career professionals in mind. All coursework is 100% online and adaptable to your schedule. The only face-to-face coursework involved is the student teaching practicum at the end of the degree program for the professional educator’s license and initial intervention specialist licensing route.

5. Can't Find Employment Within the Field

It is no secret that coursework is rigorous, no matter how accommodating the program. Getting through it and receiving your initial resident educator license can be a gratifying achievement. While it may seem like the most challenging part is behind you, job seeking can be just as arduous.

There is a general call nationwide for good, qualified teachers that are experts in their content area. Past job experience is a benefit here rather than a liability. The teaching profession is looking at an accelerated level of industry growth. In the coming years, the job market is expected to enjoy upwards of 5% yearly growth³. Now is a great time to make the transition to your new career.

Make a Career Switch into Teaching with Our Online Master's of Education Programs

Mount Vernon Nazarene University is proud to serve both traditional and non-traditional students looking to segue into a new career in teaching. We offer a variety of online master's of education programs built to fit your busy schedule. For more information on our graduate education programs, contact us today.

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