Choosing a career is one of the most important decisions you make. One of the ways to explore career options is through the 16 Career Clusters® identified by the U.S. Department of Education. They include Information Technology (IT)—defined as "entry level, technical, and professional careers related to the design, development, support, and management of hardware, software, multimedia, and systems integration services." Key opportunities in the IT field are listed among the "Fastest Growing Occupations" by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, including:
- Information Support and Services
- Network Systems
- Programming and Software Development
- Web and Digital Communications
The skills gained from participating in the Technology Student Association’s Middle School Competitions and High School Competitions—ranging from Software Development to Computer Aided Design; System Control Technology to Technology Bowl; Forensic Technology to Webmaster—offer pathways to careers in IT.
TSA has partnered with CompTIA, the leading non-profit trade association for the global technology industry that has launched initiatives to interest teens in tech careers. You can learn more about IT careers through the resources listed below:
By the Numbers:
- Current net tech employment in the United States has jumped to 11.5 million.
- 194,000 new jobs were added in tech in 2017 alone.
- The largest and fastest growing category of tech careers: software and web developers.
- $112,890 is the average annual wage of an U.S. tech industry worker. That's more than double the average, national wage.
- There are nearly 1.4 million unfilled job openings a year and millions of tech workers set to retire over the next eight years.
- An estimated 1.8 million cybersecurity jobs will go unfilled nationwide by 2022, according to a report by TechRepublic.
- Forbes reports the five most valuable U.S. companies are tech firms, posting a combined market capitalization of more than $365 billion at the end of February 2018.
What do Teens Think of Technology Careers?
A new survey finds seven in 10 teens are open to the possiblity of working in the tech arena. And since 2012, net interest in the field has increased by 10 percentage points. When presented as specific occupations, such as working with robotics or designing apps, interest is even higher. The report also shows teens' positive perceptions of tech careers include:
- good pay
- creative oppotunities
- use of technology to make a difference
- high job availability
- appealing work environment
- well-respected positions
Filling the Pipeline—How YOU can Take the IT Career Path:
Check out 2018 Cyberstates, a comprehensive, interactive resource for mapping the tech workforce in the United States, state-by-state. See what's happening in your state. Learn more about Creating IT Futures, which is creating new paths to tech careers through intiatives such as NextUp.
News on Careers in Tech:
News on TSA and CompTIA: