Learn & Explore
Spring 2023 Events
Check back soon for more spring events in this Career Community.
There are no upcoming events at this time.
Jobs & Internships on Handshake
Here’s a preview of just a few positions currently available on Handshake. Note that the date shown is not the application due date, but is the date the position was posted!
RN- Operating Room at Stoughton HealthMarch 16, 2023
Respiratory Therapist at Stoughton HealthMarch 16, 2023
Explore Career Paths
If you’re interested in careers in helping people whether through direct care as a counselor or therapist, by managing healthcare systems to impact the patient experience, or analyzing data to improve efficiency in the delivery of services, there’s a place for you in allied health, public/global health, mental health, health administration and management, clinical research and much more.
Pre-Health Advising: If you have an interest in professional programs in healthcare, please consider making an appointment to see a Pre-Health Advisor
Looking for more? Explore regional health & mental health organizations!
- Allied Health
- Mental Health
- Health Administration/Management
- Social Work
- Health & Business
- Public Health
- Other Ways to Explore
For students who are interested in careers where you are part of a medical team, “allied health care providers may play roles in evaluating and assessing a patient’s needs, keeping the physician and others informed of the patient’s progress and caring for the patient. Others work independently as specialists in exercise, nutrition, health education, speech and daily function.”
See the Center for Pre-Health Advising website Allied Health Professions for additional information about job functions, professional associations, graduate school and additional resources. L&S students interested in these professions are still able to meet with the Career & Internship Specialist in SuccessWorks.
Some of these professionals include counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists, clinical social workers and psychiatric nurses who help children, adolescents and adults deal with a variety of life stresses and problems, including addiction/substance abuse; problems with self-esteem; aging-related mental health issues; and other emotional or behavioral issues. Learn more about mental health professions with the resources and organizations below.
- American Counseling Association
- Clinical Social Worker vs. Mental Health Counselor
- Licensed Counselor Guide
- American Mentalhealth Counselor Association
- The National Rehabilitation Association
These professionals are are the business side of healthcare and their responsibilities include developing policy, coordinating and directing planning, maintaining an efficient and effective organizational structure, managing the organization’s assets, and analyzing the organization’s profitability and efficiency. A healthcare management career requires leadership skills, specialized knowledge of the healthcare industry, financial management, human resources, healthcare technology and informatics.\
To get started on exploring different career paths and options in this field, check out the following resources to learn about current topics and discussions happening in the healthcare realm to get some insights into the industry.
- American College of Healthcare Executives -This is the website for the official organization for healthcare executives/administrators.
- Public Health Online– This website provides a great overview of the field, along with recommended skills and education
- Columbia Southern Blog– This post does a nice job highlighting the fact that there are many different paths and job choices in healthcare administration.
- Modern Healthcare & Healthcare Executive Podcast
- American Association of Healthcare Administrative Management
- American Health Information Management Association
There are many great careers that involve the intersections of health and business, from healthcare consulting, to medical device sales, to digital health and health devices.
Pharmacists are medication experts who enhance patient care and promote wellness. They ensure medicines and doses are correct, prevent harmful drug interactions, counsel patients on the safe and appropriate use of their medications, and prepare and dispense prescriptions. As a pharmacist, you will have unique and specialized expertise about the composition of medicines, including their chemical, biological, and physical properties, as well as their manufacture and use. You may prepare personalized medications, participate in patient rounds at the hospital, reduce the spread of infections, conduct research or clinical trials for a biopharmaceutical company, or focus on a specific patient population or disease state (e.g., diabetes, heart disease, asthma, HIV, and pain management).
Public health is the science and art of creating healthy communities through education, research and promotion of healthy lifestyles. In public health, the focus is on health promotion and disease/injury prevention. A career in public health opens the door to diverse opportunities in a variety of sectors such as federal, state, and local organizations, private, and non-governmental organizations.
Association of Schools & Programs of Public Health (ASPPH) and American Public Health Association – go here to learn more about career paths and graduate school.
Explore Regional Health & Mental Health Organizations
Wisconsin Health Careers Area Health Education Centers (AHEC): Go to Healthcare Occupations menu to choose your area of interest. This is a good resource with Wisconsin specific employment trends
ExploreHealthCareers.org: See Start Exploring Today on the first page to find a wide variety of professions within healthcare, including Mental Health.
Career Profiles Health & Medical Career Center: Read health profession career profiles and find out information on employment trends by state.
IDENTIFY SKILLS, JOB FUNCTIONS, OUTLOOK, SALARY ETC…
ONET OnLine: O*NET OnLine has detailed descriptions of the world of work for use by job seekers, workforce development and HR professionals, students, researchers, and more!
Occupational Outlook Handbook: The OOH can help you find career information on duties, education and training, pay, and outlook for hundreds of occupations.
CareerOneStop: A source for career exploration, training & jobs. Sponsored by the U.S. Dept. of Labor.
Glassdoor.com: Jobs, Company Reviews, Salaries, Interviews, Know Your Worth.
Healthcare & Human Services FAQ
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What specific skills and experiences should a resume include for Healthcare & Human Services?
For most opportunities involving helping professions, a standard resume is a great place to start. A simple, well-organized resume that highlights your relevant skills and outlines your accomplishments is all you’ll need for the majority of HHS opportunities. That’s why it’s generally a good idea to stay away from fancy graphics and the free templates you find online, because even though they can look good at first, they can’t be adapted as you rework and add to your resume.
Sometimes, it’s helpful to have a few different versions of your resume, including one “Comprehensive Resume” that has all of your past work written out and can easily be cut down and re-ordered to highlight different types of experience, with related headings, based on the opportunity that interests you.
Ready to get started on your resume? Check out the SuccessWorks resume page, and set up an appointment with a Peer Advisor or Graduate Intern for feedback on your draft!
What should I be doing as a student to prepare for a career in the helping professions with direct 1:1 service to others?
When thinking about what experiences to have and to include on your resume, remember that you can include relevant knowledge and skills that you’ve gained from coursework, volunteering, student organizations, and other roles that may include providing a service to specific populations, like childcare or tutoring, being a camp counselor, advocating on mental health issues, being a peer advisor on campus, or working as a patient navigator with a community and social service organization. Above all, demonstrating strong interpersonal communication skills, empathy, and an interest in making a positive impact on others’ lives shows that you are interested in working in healthcare and human services.
Where can I find jobs and internships in this field?
It depends on the type of jobs and internships that interest you! The HHS newsletter and Facebook group highlight relevant opportunities as they’re posted, and this handout provides you with examples of local organizations where students are known to volunteer, work, and intern in the Madison and Milwaukee areas. Handshake is also a good site to check out, because it has information about career fairs and employer events as well as job and internship postings. I recommend adding the Handshake widget to your MyUW homepage to easily access the site. And of course, there’s the student job board for UW-Madison where you’ll find administrative and helping roles that are useful for getting started in HHS career paths.
Larger job boards (LinkedIn, Indeed, etc.) are always an option, too. While they can be overwhelming they do give you suggestions in the job search window of other titles to search. This can be helpful in creating a keyword list to help narrow your search. For the time being, I recommend you start with more focused search resources like the ones included above.
Is a cover letter actually important?
When applying for jobs and internships in HHS, it may depend on the type of role as to whether or not a cover letter is required. If you are filling out an online application, answering specific essay questions, and providing evidence of relevant experience, a cover letter may not be required. However, if there is a place to upload a cover letter, it is your chance to demonstrate your writing ability and to show a hiring manager why you’re interested in the position, and how your skills and experience make you a strong candidate. No one pursues a career in a service-oriented, helping profession without a strong passion or connection to their work, so that shared drive and motivation is something that every employer looks for in a candidate.
What types of gap year jobs should I look for?
Gap years are a great option to give yourself time to research and apply for programs of interest, learn more about the skills you want to gain through a graduate degree, and figure out what type of programs are the best suited for your goals and priorities. If you are planning on applying to health profession programs and you’re taking a gap year(s), ask yourself what types of experiences and skills are you still looking to gain? What else will help you to be a competitive applicant? Do you need more clinical experience, patient contact with specific populations, research or service work? There is no right experience to have, but demonstrating that you are spending your time wisely and preparing for your next steps is invaluable!
Check out the Grad School Application resource page, and enroll in the Grad School and Gap Year Canvas for more information.
Is being a doctor the best way to save lives working in healthcare?
There are multiple paths into working in healthcare. In addition to exploring common health professions, take time to consider paths like biomedical research, public health, health policy and healthcare management. These paths are also known for saving lives and play a vital role within the healthcare industry. In fact, all members of a healthcare team need to work together to provide the best care for patients. You can learn more about the collaborative approach to learning that UW-Madison graduate professional programs take on the Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education website.
Do I have to succeed in upper level math and science courses in order to work in a clinical healthcare setting?
Actually, there are other options if you discover that your skills and strengths may be stronger in other subjects. Start here to see all the different paths found in a clinical setting. One example is respiratory therapy.? Check-out two year training programs and masters degrees that don’t require organic chemistry. Here’s one program to explore.
Do I need to go to graduate school to find a rewarding career path if I major in psychology?
Not necessarily! Transferable skills you learn include research, problem solving, human behavior and so much more.
Some of the most common types of jobs that psychology majors have applied to on Handshake, to name a few, include all different types of analyst roles, HR recruiting, consulting, and product development.
Do I need a doctorate degree to work in mental health?
There are so many graduate school options for pursuing a path in counseling. How do I know which program is right for me?
Before enrolling in a graduate program, all prospective students must learn how to choose a counseling program that suits their personal interests, academic needs, and career goals. When you figure out these aspects of decision making for yourself, you can start to narrow in on the types of programs in which to apply. Here is another good resource to help in this process.
When should I make an advising appointment with Maureen?
If you’re just getting started with your resume or cover letter, the Resume and Cover Letters page has all you need to put together a solid draft! Then, our Peer Advisors and Graduate Interns can help you make sure your application materials are ready to submit and highlight all of your relevant skills and experience at an Express Advising Appointment!
If you know you’re interested in healthcare and human services careers and are looking for ways to gain experience, check out the HHS Career Community Hub. On these pages, you’ll find examples of different career paths in mental health, plus examples of alternative paths to work in healthcare beyond the clinical setting.
If you have in-depth questions about figuring out the best graduate program to become a therapist, want to explore what else you can do in healthcare besides being a doctor, nurse, physician assistant etc.., or are feeling lost and want help getting a better sense of your options within this Career Community, then that’s a great time to meet with Maureen, the Career and Internship Specialist for Healthcare & Human Services! Maureen and other Career and Internship Specialists can help you with mock interviews, honing your application strategy, negotiating a job offer, and discussing that transition from college to career or graduate school. Make an appointment with Maureen here.
If I want to work in scientific research, do I need to go to graduate school or receive further training or certification? If yes, what is the right program(s) for me? Does it make sense to do a Ph.D. or a professional master’s program? Talk to your career & internship specialist, your academic advisor, and faculty members to learn more and to find out about different programs. Here are a few resources to get you started:
For our complete guide, view our non-credit Canvas module – Graduate School & Gap Year.
Social work is an evidence-based profession that promotes human and community wellbeing. Guided by a person-in-environment framework, a global perspective, respect for human diversity, and knowledge based on scientific inquiry, the purpose of social work is actualized through its quest for social and economic justice, the prevention of conditions that limit human rights, the elimination of poverty, and the enhancement of the quality of life for all persons, locally and globally.
Learn more with these resources and organizations: