10 meaningful jobs that help people
Helping others is on the top of plenty of job seekers’ wish lists. These are just a few ways you can make a career out of compassion.
Charles Dickens famously wrote, “No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.” He must have been talking about workers with jobs that help people, of course.
Job seekers have been known to place significant importance on a job’s meaningfulness—a sense that their work has a broader purpose. And why not? There’s tremendous satisfaction in knowing that your work made someone’s day—and, in effect, the world at large—a little bit better.
Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Monster rounded up 10 jobs that let you make a direct impact on others’ lives.
What you’d do: Graduation time is among the most stressful in students’ lives. Career advisors help to lighten their load, often working at high schools, colleges, and universities. In addition to consulting with students to help them make difficult career decisions, advisors also review important documents (like resumes and cover letters) and help students practice important job-seeking skills such as interviewing.
What you’d need: Although some employers prefer applicants to have a master’s degree in counseling, not all require one. Pursuing a bachelor’s of psychology or counseling is a great place to start.
What you’d make: $55,410 per year
Find career counselor jobs on Monster.
What you’d do: Maybe you wouldn't think of makeup appearing in a list of jobs that help people, but the fact is, when people look good, they feel good. Cosmetology is the professional practice of making people look and feel beautiful. From recommending skincare and beauty products to providing hair care services to clients, cosmetologists enable people to be their most confident selves.
What you’d need: No formal training is required, but completing a program from a licensed cosmetology school will help you get your foot in the door. Check out this sample resume for a cosmetologist.
What you’d make: $24,830 per year
Find cosmetologist jobs on Monster.
Human resource specialist
What you’d do: What’s the most valuable asset of any business? The people who work there. As a human resource specialist, you’ll screen, interview, and hire candidates, as well provide support to current employees (such as answering questions about benefits or company culture). So not only do HR specialists help employ people, they also help fill companies with excellent workers.
What you’d need: A bachelor’s degree in human resources or business management is a great place to start, though a master’s degree is usually required in order to advance. Check out this sample resume for a human resources generalist.
What you’d make: $60,880 per year
Find human resource specialist jobs on Monster.
What you’d do: As far as industries go, health care likely offers the most jobs that help people. Good health leads to happiness and well-being, and it starts with the basics: food. Nutritionists work in hospitals, schools, nursing homes, and the like to help create and implement meal plans to improve the health of their patients.
What you’d need: Along with a bachelor’s degree in food and nutrition, clinical nutrition, or a related field, you’ll need to be licensed in most states.
What you’d make: $60,370 per year
Find nutritionist jobs on Monster.
What you’d do: Getting in shape is a perennial concern for many people, but sometimes they could use a little motivation. Personal trainers work with people of all ages to build custom fitness plans. Along with performing physical assessments and creating training programs, personal trainers also inspire their clients to stick to a plan so they achieve desired results.
What you’d need: A high school diploma, along with an associate's degree in a health or fitness field, is typical, and you will likely need to pass an exam to receive your license. Check out this sample resume for a personal trainer.
What you’d make: $39,820 per year
Find personal trainer jobs on Monster.
What you’d do: Whether they’re saving a life or simply keeping the peace, police officers work within communities to enforce the law in order to keep people safe.
What you’d need: A high school diploma is usually enough to get you started, though a bachelor’s degree may be required for some positions. You must also attend police academy training. Check out this sample resume for a police officer and learn more about how to become a police officer.
What you’d make: $63,380 per year
Find police officer jobs on Monster.
What you’d do: Mind over matter, they say—but for many people, it’s rarely that easy. Life throws curveballs all the time. Whether working directly with patients or with a team of health care professionals, psychologists provide a range of mental health services, including counseling and crisis intervention.
What you’d need: All psychologists must have a master’s degree in psychology; for some positions, a doctorate is required.
What you’d make: $79,010 per year
Find psychologist jobs on Monster.
What you’d do: Whether in an emergency or a routine visit to the doctor’s office, nurses are generally the first person to help patients through the treatment process. Registered nurses (or RNs) administer patient care plans and advice, treat patients, inform doctors, and follow hospital best practices and protocols, bringing heaps of comfort to the patients in their care.
What you’d need: RNs require an associate's degree from an accredited nursing school and must obtain a license. Check out this sample resume for an RN.
What you’d make: $71,730 per year
Find nursing jobs on Monster.
Social worker (clinical)
What you’d do: For people who struggle with mental illnesses, emotional problems, or behavioral issues, life can be tough. Clinical social workers provide health care services by conducting behavioral analysis, crisis stabilization, and therapy, usually in a hospital, school, clinic, or private practice.
What you’d need: To become a clinical social worker, you’ll need a master’s in social work, and you must pass the licensing exam. Check out this sample resume for a social worker and learn more about how to become a social worker.
What you’d make: $49,470 per year
Find social worker jobs on Monster.
Special education teacher
What you’d do: School can be an intimidating place for students with emotional, behavioral, or learning challenges. Special education teachers are there to empower them to reach their full potential. As a special education teacher, you’ll plan and teach lessons catered to students’ specific needs and abilities.
What you’d need: Public school special ed teachers must have a bachelor’s degree and a state-issued certification, while private schools may not require a state license.
What you’d make: $59,780 per year
Find special education teacher jobs on Monster.
Find fulfillment at work
We know it's not easy to find a job, let alone find a job that makes you feel like you're making a real contribution to people's lives. Could you use some help finding jobs that help people? Join Monster for free today. As a member, you can upload up to five versions of your resume—each tailored to the types of meaningful jobs that interest you. Recruiters search Monster every day looking to fill top jobs with qualified candidates, just like you. Additionally, you can get career advice, job search tips, and industry insights sent right to your inbox so you can see which companies are making strides in employee engagement. Your job should mean more to you than just a path to a paycheck.