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4 Career Paths for Former Teachers

former teachers

Droves of former teachers said goodbye to education in the past few years, and who can blame them? It’s a pressure cooker. We absolutely love hiring former teachers (we’ve had a few on our own staff, in fact). Many have outstanding transferable skills in problem-solving, leadership, patience, collaboration, and just plain grit. While many former teachers transition into adjacent field’s career path like coaching, tutoring, childcare, academic advising, and consulting in the education field, you do not need to stay in those areas for a successful next chapter. In fact, you can veer as far away from education as you’d like. No kidding! Here are some areas we’ve seen former teachers thrive in firsthand:

Sales: “A teacher can take a complicated idea and make it understandable to a child. They are also good storytellers and are super well-rehearsed in giving a verbal presentation…Avoiding all that weak salespeople stuff and getting right to the meat of things communicated well,” writes Reddit user Youeclipsedbyme. We couldn’t agree more! Sales is the type of field that few people dream of going into, but many find it suits them well. The best part is that you don’t need a degree to transition into the field.

Marketing: Like sales, marketing is a tailor-made alternative career path for former teachers. As the Content Marketing Institute points out, teachers tend to be explainers, planners, researchers, quick learners, and relationship builders. They can measure progress and course-correct when they don’t like what they’re observing. And then can battle short attention spans with the best of them. Going back to school isn’t needed, but if you’re interested in reaching the C-Suite in marketing, adding an advanced degree to your undergrad might serve you well.

Human resources: Maybe the sales or marketing mindset isn’t your jam. Perhaps you’re more a nurturer than a storyteller or persuasion master. For those former teachers, a new career path in human resources (HR) might be a match. HR can be an excellent fit for those who love to create order out of chaos, train people, and find incremental ways to improve the lives of the people around them. Thankfully, a degree in education is a great launching pad into HR. You may also want to gain a few certifications, including a Professional in Human Resources certification (PHR) and Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) certifications.

Data analysis: Don’t be intimidated by tech jobs. If you live in Austin or another tech-centric hub, take advantage of that and snag a spot in the tech world for yourself! One of our favorite alternative career paths for tech jobs for former teachers is data analyst—those who explore data and information to uncover actionable insights. As General Assembly explains, “Understanding the data is just one part—you need to be able to interpret it and tell a story with visualization that non-technical audiences can understand. The interpretation aspect should be a natural fit for teachers!” You’ll need some experience and training in programs like Python or SQL (although you may be amazed at how far your Excel skills will take you). Certifications and boot camps will do the trick in most cases.

There are endless possibilities out there for a new career path for former teachers. For more ideas and jobs to get your foot in the door outside of education, connect with our recruiters.