Exploring Opportunity Occupations and Careers in Health Care

Are there well-paying health care jobs that don't require a college degree? The answer may depend on where you live. Learn more in our latest Maximum Employment Matters webinar.

Video Segments

  • Part 1 (1:23-3:30)
    Why does the Federal Reserve care about opportunity occupations and careers in healthcare?

  • Part 2 (3:31-6:55)
    What are opportunity occupations?

  • Part 3 (6:56-12:36)
    What are current trends in opportunity occupations?

  • Part 4 (12:37-17:50)
    What are the current trends in employer education preferences?

  • Part 5 (17:51-21:23)
    What are some things that can be done to increase access to middle skill or opportunity occupations?

  • Part 6 (21:24-26:50)
    What is the healthcare industry doing to adapt to a tight labor market?

  • Part 7 (26:51-30:02)
    What are current healthcare labor trends?

  • Part 8 (30:03-32:57)
    What do careers in healthcare look like within the Southeast?

  • Part 9 (32:58-35:40)
    What are some of the changes in healthcare training?

  • Part 10 (35:41-42:28)
    What are some of the opportunities in the healthcare and what are employers looking for in new hires?

  • Part 11 (42:29-52:20)
    What are some of the resources available to teach today’s topic?

  • Part 12 (52:20-53:09)
    Questions and Answers: The poll question indicates that health care is expected to grow by 22 percent between 2014 and 2024. How does that compare to other industries?

  • Part 13 (53:10-54:18)
    Questions and Answers: Is it fair to say the labor market is tightening up in nursing?

  • Part 14 (54:19-55:23)
    Questions and Answers: Could you tell us about some of the non-health-care opportunity occupations that are showing potential in the Southeast?

  • Part 15 (55:24-56:53)
    Questions and Answers: What are some of the high-demand jobs in health care? And what education is required? What are the salary bands for these high-demand jobs?

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Webinar Transcript

Denise Qaoud: Hello, and welcome to today's Maximum Employment Matters webinar. Our discussion for today focuses on exploring opportunity occupations and careers in health care. I'm Denise Qaoud from the St. Louis Fed, and I'll be facilitating today's call. Before we get started, allow me to cover the call logistics. If you haven't already done so yet, click on the webinar link you received after registering.

This option offers a few benefits. You can watch the slides as they're advanced. You can type questions to us, download the session materials, or even choose to listen to the audio through your PC speakers. Please note that the webinar performance is dependent upon your connection. So if at any time you're having problems, just pick up the phone and dial the toll-free number. To ask questions today, you can submit them at any time by clicking on the "ask question" button in the webinar tool.

Be sure to keep your mouse handy throughout the webinar, as we'll be asking you to participate in some polling questions later on. One additional note. The views expressed in this presentation are those of the presenters and not the official opinions of nor binding on the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta nor the Federal Reserve System. Now, with all of that out of the way, I'll turn the call over to our host for this program, Julie Kornegay from the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

Julie Kornegay: Thanks, Denise. Welcome, and thank you for participating in today's Maximum Employment Matters webinar. I'm Julie Kornegay, and today we will be exploring opportunity occupations and careers in health care. We have an outstanding lineup of presenters, also from the Federal Reserve. Please allow me to introduce Stuart Andreason and Mels de Zeeuw, and from our New Orleans branch, Claire Loup. And we are excited to have our industry expert Patricia Horton with the Georgia Hospitals Association with us also.

Let's see slide four, please. So, before we get started, I want to provide a brief overview about how this webinar series came about and about the Federal Reserve programs. Oftentimes when we're recruiting speakers or promoting our programs, we get questions like, "Why is the Federal Reserve hosting a webinar on careers and health care?" These types of programs are at the core of the Fed's mission. The Federal Reserve has a dual mandate of price stability and maximum employment.

Slide five, please. By offering these programs, we hope to inform the audience of industry trends that will lead to an increase in human capital. This information can be used in education and training to produce more skilled labor. A skilled labor force attracts new industry, which brings with it higher-paying jobs, which produces more consumer spending and tax dollars, ultimately increasing our standard of living.

Slide six. Our program today will focus on the areas within the Atlanta Federal Reserve that we call the Sixth District. The Sixth District represents most of the Southeast and is a good indicator of the U.S. economy as a whole. As you can see on the map, there are 12 Federal Reserve Districts. The Federal Reserve System offers educational outreach programs that are economics and personal finance oriented. Later in this presentation, Claire will discuss some of the free resources that are available through the Federal Reserve.

Slide seven, please. Now that you know a little more about our education outreach programs and why we are hosting the webinar, I am excited to introduce our first speakers. Stuart Andreason and Mels de Zeeuw are both with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta's Community and Economic Development group.

Stuart is workforce development director in the Center for Human Capital Studies. His major fields of study are workforce and human capital development policy and economic development policy with a specialization in labor market and socioeconomic conditions in metropolitan areas. Mels supports the team's data analysis and research projects. He's passionate about using data to eliminate and illustrate stories and trends that affect low- and moderate-income groups across the Southeast. Stuart and Mels, thank you for joining us this afternoon.

Stuart Andreason: Thank you.

Mels de Zeeuw: Thank you.

Andreason: Let's go ahead and go to the next slide, slide number eight, please. I just want to take a little bit of time to talk about what we're talking about when we talk about opportunity occupations. Now what we actually mean by that is what some other people might call a middle-skill job.

But we wanted to put an extra screen on it and talk about middle-skill jobs that are well-paying, above the annual median wage, but don't require a four-year college degree to get them, often a ticket to the middle class without having to incur significant amounts of debts or time out of the labor market.

A couple of quick trends is that there have been over the last few years a little bit fewer of these jobs. You can see further information on it in reports that we put out in 2015 and, most recently, earlier this year. The other thing that's important to note is that it depends on where you live how many jobs are opportunity occupations. And we actually used online job ads to study whether some of these jobs were opportunity occupations in some places or others.

And depending on employer preference for some positions, occupations may or may not be opportunity occupations, because sometimes employers ask for a four-year degree for some of these jobs. What you can see is that, due to a number of factors, places like Louisville may have about 32 percent of their jobs as defined as opportunity occupations, while other places have far fewer, such as New York where just under 12 percent of its available jobs were defined as opportunity occupations.

Let's go to slide nine. Now what you can see from this is a list of the most prevalent opportunity occupations across the country. And this is literally a count of the number of job ads that were available over a period of several years. And now what you can see is that health care occupations are an important part of that category. Registered nurses was the number one most prevalent opportunity occupation with over 1.7 million positions available in 2014.

Also on the list were licensed practical nurses and licensed vocational nurses with nearly 450,000 positions available. So these are very prevalent positions, and they present great opportunity for people who are interested in well-paying work. I'm going to turn it over to Mels now to talk about a little bit of the trends that we've seen in the Southeast in opportunity occupations.

de Zeeuw: So thank you, Stuart. If we go to slide 10, slide 10 shows some of the recent results of a deeper dive into opportunity occupations in the Southeast. So Stuart was describing some of the results of a report by the Federal Reserve Banks of Atlanta, Cleveland, and Philadelphia in 2015 that took a national look. And we recently delved in the data and said see, well, what does it look like in state and metro areas in the Southeast of the U.S.? And this chart kind of gives you a high-level view of our results.

So if you focus on the green bar, the green bar is the share of jobs within each state that we classify as an opportunity occupation. So, generally, employers don't require a bachelor's degree for these jobs, but they do pay more than the national median wage. And if you look at those numbers, you see that there is pretty substantial regional differences within the Southeast. So we see Alabama and Louisiana perform...you know, have relatively high shares of employment that we can classify as an opportunity occupation, whereas this is quite a bit less, quite a lower percentage in Florida.

If we go to slide 11, part of our analysis was to identify which jobs are opportunity occupations in the Southeast. And, as you can see, health care jobs, as Stuart already mentioned, are an important aspect of these positions. And throughout the Southeast, registered nurses and LPN [licensed practical nurse] positions offer middle-skill workers good opportunities for well-paying jobs.

Now this slide kind of shows images from a brochure that we recently put together, a big poster that we're targeting toward educators to kind of hang in their classroom so they can tell students about opportunities that exist both if they do go to college or if they decide to want to go in a different direction. And this is kind of some images that are an outtake of that. So if people...if listeners are interested in that, feel free to reach out to us, and we're happy to provide that. And I think...Denise, I think we have a polling question.

Qaoud: That's right. So at this time go ahead and grab your mouse. You should see a polling question pop up on your screen here in just a moment. Go ahead and make your selection while I read it out loud. In what Southeast state do the two most prevalent medical opportunity occupations, registered nurses and licensed practical nurses, contribute the largest share of the total workforce? a) Alabama; b) Tennessee; c) Mississippi; or d) Georgia? So go ahead and make your selection now. And I'm going to go ahead and stop that poll and show the results. We should see it pop up here in just a moment. OK. Ah, looks like we're 50/50, Alabama and Georgia. Mels, back to you.

de Zeeuw: Well, it's actually Mississippi. In Mississippi, if you combine registered nurses and LPN jobs, LPN total employment, it's about 3.4 percent of total employment. And if we go to slide 12, we can see that. And we can also see that there is a key in all—in the entire Southeast, these two medical opportunity occupations form significant shares of employment or important opportunity jobs for middle-skill workers.

But we do see pretty strong, pretty significant regional differences in both the share of jobs that are available, but also in median annual salaries. And these differences remain even if we control for cost-of-living differences, and they even exist at the metro level. For instance, if we just look at Alabama, a median annual salary for registered nurses ranges between about $45,000 in the Florence-Muscle Shoals area to about $56,000 in Huntsville. So that's a pretty significant difference.

And they contribute a much larger share of the workforce in Dothan, Alabama, than they do in Auburn. And the same is true for licensed practical nurses positions. Salaries range from $34,000 in Mobile to about $38,000 in Montgomery. So what that shows is that there's pretty...there's a large variation in the opportunity that exists for workers. And if they're winning and if they're able to be mobile, workers can have access to, you know, higher-salary jobs and a lot more job openings as well.

Now if we go to slide 13, slide 13 shows a chart that...it kind of shows a discovery that we made during this process. So it's a little hard to make out, but they're all little bars, and every little bar represents a metro area in the U.S. And it shows you the percentage of job ads in which employers requested a bachelor's degree for a registered nurse's position. And what this shows you is that there is a huge spread across the country, across metros, in where employers want a four-year degree for a registered nurse's position.

And we found this for other jobs as well. So we were kind of intrigued by this. For instance, just to give you an example, between 2011 and 2014, just 8 percent of job ads in Hot Springs, Arkansas, required a bachelor's degree for a registered nurse's job. And if you compare that to Winchester, Virginia, here, it was 63 percent, so a huge variation. And this matters because it gives you a much...if you don't go to a four-year college, it's much harder to get into the nursing profession in some metros than others.

And on slide 14, we did some research into this. We came up with some predictive models to try and answer the question, "Well, what is the probability that an employer requests a bachelor's degree for a job?" Even if we control for...even if the job has the same skill level, even if the job has the same experience, and even if the job is in the same industry, do we still see these regional differences? And the answer is yes, we've found some interesting results.

For instance, if you look at the red box on the screen, that shows you that metro areas with large population centers are more...employers are more likely to request a four-year degree for a registered nurse's job, 4.3 percent compared to metro areas that had less than 250,000 inhabitants. Another interesting result if you look at the purple box is some pretty strong regional differences. And the Northeast employers were 8.9 percent more likely to request a bachelor's degree for a registered...for an RN job compared to the South.

And another interesting trend...so another important factor was larger share of people that recently completed bachelor's degrees. And if you look at the top, the kind of blue-colored box, we found that this...employers are more likely, have become more likely over time to demand bachelor or request bachelor's degrees for an RN position. So if you look at 2014, employers are now 8 percent more likely than they were in 2011. So these are some trends we saw in regards to registered nurses' positions. And, Denise, I think we have another polling question.

Qaoud: Yes, that's right. So at this time you should see a question popping up on your screen. Same thing as last time—go ahead and make your selection while I read it out loud. Where are employers least likely to request a bachelor's degree for a registered nurse's job? a), Miami-Fort Lauderdale, Florida; b), Atlanta, Georgia; c) Huntsville, Alabama; or d) Nashville, Tennessee.

So go ahead, finish up making your selection, and I will go ahead and stop the poll and show those results. You should see it pop up here in just a minute. OK. It looks like 61 percent say c), Huntsville, Alabama. Thirty-three percent say a), Miami-Fort Lauderdale, Florida. And just 6 percent say Atlanta, Georgia. Mels, back to you.

de Zeeuw: So that's great. It is actually Huntsville, Alabama. And if we go to slide 15, there we can kind of see some of the regional differences for bachelor's degree requests among employers between metro areas. So, again, this controls for the skill level of these jobs, the experience level, and industry. And we see that Huntsville employers are 17 percent less likely to request a BA degree for RN positions than they are in Atlanta. This is all compared to Atlanta.

And we see some other pretty stark regional differences as well. Miami, Jacksonville, Nashville, they are less likely...if we compare them to other metros in the Northeast or in the West of the country, we see that employers are more likely to request bachelor's degrees. So, with that, I'm going to turn it back to Stuart.

Andreason: Great. Thanks so much. And if we go to slide 16, I just want to end by talking about, what are some of the things that can be done to help increase access and availability to some of these opportunity occupations, particularly the ones that are available in health care, but more broadly than that as well, as many of these types of training programs and policies apply to whatever field you may be interested in, whether it might be construction and trade opportunities available or positions in IT or manufacturing.

Many of these positions have alternate paths, really, to obtaining the skills and credentials necessary to get into the positions. We know that health care and registered nursing and licensed practical nursing come with licensure and specific training skills, but some of those are difficult for people to get, given the time and time constraints that they might have and ability to take on debt or exit the workforce to commit their time completely to education.

So there have been some exciting new programs, like job-based training, also known by workforce development organizations as incumbent worker training, where hospital associations have worked with people in positions to get them the skills and credentials and education necessary to move up into positions that require them, like registered nursing.

There's also been a big movement among many educational groups into competency-based training, where rather than basing education on credit hours, they base it on the ability to show competency. So it might be an opportunity for people who have already got some skills to be able to take assessments and prove competency to be able to move more quickly through educational requirements, which are both really exciting opportunities. I'm excited that our next speaker will talk a little bit more about them.

If we go to slide 17, I'd just like to highlight where you can find some more information on opportunity occupations and the community development work that happens at the Atlanta Fed. What you'll see is our two websites, one specifically on opportunity occupations and one on our community development group, which focuses on workforce development, housing, small business development, and community development finance, as well as my and Mels's email addresses. Please feel free to reach out with any questions or thoughts that you might have on this. And with that, I'm going to turn it back to Julie. Thanks so much.

Kornegay: Thank you for joining us today. And I think Mels is being a little modest about the infographic that the Community and Economic Development group has coming out. I got a sneak peek, and it is wonderful. So we will let you know when that is available. It should be very soon. And thank you to you both. And if you have any questions for Stuart or Mels, please click the "ask question" button in the lower left section of the webinar window, and we will do our best to get as many questions as possible answered at the end of the program.

So now we're going to transition to our next speaker. We're excited to welcome Pat Horton. Pat has been a nurse for over 38 years and spent most of her career in hospital leadership. She currently works at Georgia Hospital Association as the workforce initiatives coordinator.

Pat collaborates with healthcare leaders on initiatives that support the goal of delivering high-quality patient care. She consults with a variety of businesses and community organizations to promote the perspective of health care employer and to explore opportunities to build a sustainable health care workforce. Pat, we're delighted to have you. And to kick off your section, we have a poll question. Denise?

Qaoud: All right. So there should be a poll question popping up on your screen. Make your selection while I read it out loud. By what percent did health care jobs grow between 2004 and 2014? a) 18 percent; b) 25 percent; c) 20 percent; or d) 32 percent. So go ahead, finish making your selection, and I will go ahead and stop this poll and show the results. It should pop up here in just a moment. OK. Wow. Looks like 50 percent say c) 20 percent; 33 percent say d) 32 percent. And 17 percent say b) 25 percent. All right, let's turn it over to you, Pat.

Patricia Horton: Thank you. And the majority are correct. It is 20 percent. The health care sector between 2004 and 2014 has grown significantly compared to many other types of professions, which is normally between maybe 3 percent and 5 percent. So it is growing significantly for a variety of reasons. And we want to talk a little bit about what's changing in this labor market around health care. And part of that is the building infrastructure to support an intergenerational workforce.

These days we have numerous generations working together in our workforce, so it's important that we try new approaches in the workplace so that we can not only attract but retain the intergenerational workforce, that is, retain the baby boomers in that workforce as long as possible, but also the millennials and coming into that workforce. So we need to be paying attention to the infrastructure.

Also developing and retaining talent. These days it's not...as people are leaving, it's not a one-for-one replacement. So providing growth and development for the staff, many of them are looking for training opportunities, being engaged in the decision making that impacts the work that they do, and providing opportunities for advancement. And of course they want to be paid at the market rate, but not all of them are just looking for dollars and cents. Many of them want to be able to be trained and be able to advance in the health care profession.

Developing community partnerships. This is very important because of, in the past, many of us in different organizations have all been working in silos. And we're all working toward similar goals, and that is building a sustainable health care workforce that's competent now and in the future, so working together across the community to partner not only with our providers—our hospitals and other systems—but across other areas such as businesses, nonprofits, educational organizations to really be able to build those partnerships to address this health care workforce.

Also collecting data on the workforce to forecast future needs. Something that we've not done great with in health care is collecting a lot of data on our health care workforce, whether it's in our own individual organizations or if it's for our state. And this has become very important, because in order for us to better forecast the predictability of what we're going to need for the future, we need data to make good decisions. So working toward creating a way to manage and collect that data is very important.

And also, increasing educational capacity. As many of you may be aware, we are not able to address many of the...to manage the education for many of the people that are applying. Our educational capacity to a certain extent is limited in some of the health care areas such as nursing.

And therefore, it's important that we work together to really be able to address...whether it's using technology for clinical placement to become more efficient and increase some of those placement opportunities in health care settings or using simulation tools for adjunct training, because there are so many individuals that need clinical training, and availability is often limited. So those areas are very important in looking at as because this tight labor market.

If we can turn to slide 20, the current health care labor trends. Right now we are looking at trying to encourage a more diverse workforce because the diversity of the health care workforce, we're trying to match the diversity of the community of individuals that we're caring for, and also addressing the problem of health care disparities. More organizations are also focusing on training their staff to be able to have a more culturally competent workforce by including training programs and orientations and continuing education.

We talked a little bit about intergenerational, but with many generations working together, it's important to build an organizational culture that develops and nurtures employees of all ages so that we can provide excellent patient care. How we treat our staff highly determines how we're going to...what the outcomes of patient care...the outcomes on our patients and the care that we provide. So it's important that we really look at the needs of the different generations.

Emphasis on leadership development. These days really trying to encourage leadership development and many organizations are taking that on and really providing specific knowledge and skills training to be...so that leaders can be more effective in the complexity and the rapid changing environment of health care. There's more emphasis internally with organizations to really provide training, which shows that good leaders have a very positive impact on the outcomes and the results on the patients that we care for.

Employee retention—training, development, work culture, and career advancement—are all very important, because as we see, there are many opportunities to recruit individuals into the health care sector. And training and doing these things for employee retention is very important, because we want to retain those individuals that we're recruiting. It increases morale of the staff. It prepares them for opportunities. It improves retention and has a positive impact again on patient care outcomes.

As you can see, employee retention has a huge—and as well as leadership retention—has a huge impact on the outcomes of the patients that we're caring for. More focus is now being placed on inter-professional collaboration, which in the past that was not always looked at as a skill that needed to be trained for.

But these...today that is a very important skill, and even in the medical profession, they are looking at training physicians to be more collaborative and to have better communication across the disciplines, because again, this has a positive impact on our patients. And all of these different areas are very important because, ultimately, who we care for in the health care sector are patients and the community. So we want to have a positive impact.

If we can go to slide 21, health care in the Southeast. Health care is a...obviously, as we've talked about, is a very high-growth sector. It's one of the fastest-growing sectors due to the aging population and the medical needs that they have. The industry is also addressing the labor pool, which we have increased aging health care professionals. And so addressing the need to increase this pool of health care providers, we're doing this through a variety of initiatives. There's not one magic bullet and one fix that's going to bring more individuals into the health care sector.

So we are doing a variety of things, and through the career opportunities, health care offers a variety of different occupations in that field, whether it encompasses, yes, many clinical positions. But there are also roles such as pharmacists, imaging. Those pretty much are clinical, but there's fields such as environmental services, information technology, financial, marketing, administrative, human resources, food services, just to name a few. So within the health care sector there are many opportunities to do a variety of things and still work in that field.

Advancement potential. There is advancement potential throughout health care, whether you're looking to move up from an entry level position and just getting into health care or up toward a more professional role. And there's also opportunities as well for leadership roles, depending on the different career paths that you would like to take and what direction you want to pursue. But there's great advancement potential.

And with the changes in the culture of health, which we'll talk about in just a second, there are new opportunities for new positions being created to look at a true culture of health for our health care workforce as well as the individuals that we're caring for and having more of an emphasis on creating that culture of health.

Apprenticeships—as Stuart talked about a little bit earlier, the cost of education is rising and the pace of change is escalating rapidly. And there is opportunity for work-based learning approaches. Even looking down at the high school level and moving up into more of a midlevel to a professional level is particularly significant in health care these days. The workplace is recognized as a place of learning and professional preparation, and therefore more apprenticeships are being developed across the sector. And, again, the emphasis on a culture of health is so important, because it is creating new positions across that continuum of care.

If we can go to 22, please—changes in health care training. Developing workforce strategies and models from entry level to professional level. This is something we are doing in the metro area. We're working on a pilot where we're really trying to look at how do we bring in the unemployed individuals, and also taking those who are underemployed and providing guided career paths to help them get into the entry level and to progress to a professional level with some guidance. These models are important in building our pipeline for a sustainable health care workforce.

Another initiative that I'm sure many of you are aware of that I've been involved in as well, but there's many other areas working on this, and that is providing STEM programs for high school students and even looking at possibly moving back into the middle schools. But it is the science, the technology, the engineering, and mathematics focus. So these students are prepared with educational activities for careers in an area of health care as well as other science-based areas.

Partnering to expand educational capacity. Educational institutions at the college level and provider organizations are working together more today than they have in the past, as we've talked about, in silos. But now they're partnering to align the resources that they have, problem solving, and really getting together to look at how can we educate more individuals in the area of health care and provide more clinical opportunities to receive that training.

Utilizing technology to expand student clinical experience. Something that we're moving toward in the state of Georgia and I'm sure other states are moving toward as well is using more technology to streamline processes and efficiency so that we can place more students clinically. And there are different programs out there being utilized for clinical placement, which we all used to do manually in the past.

We're also now utilizing technology to assist students and to assist those who are being oriented to their clinical environment through more simulation-based training, so that there is opportunities to train these individuals well and prepare them before they even get into the work-based setting, and then there's additional support for that training. That is the simulation model to streamline that training.

If we can go to slide 23—opportunities in health care. Obviously, something that we look very seriously at in health care is that it's not just a job. We're looking for individuals who want careers, and that is just the individuals who are interested in coming in at the entry level and moving up and progressing and advancing in the health care sector. We want individuals who are interested in having meaningful work who want to make a difference in the lives of others and have that opportunity to progress and advance and make a difference.

Guided career paths from entry to professional level, which I've mentioned a little bit. But this is very important, because individuals want to be able to progress, but many don't know how to go about that or what kinds of support there is available to help you advance in your career and progress. And so we're putting together a variety of guided career paths. Health care has a broad range of advancement opportunities, such as we talked about from entry level to professional level, whether you would want to advance in the leadership aspect. And it's in a variety of disciplines and roles in health care.

Leadership opportunities. Leadership is critically important in health care, as it is in many professions. But it makes a huge difference on the retention of our employees as well as the impact on patient care. So it's important that we invest in leadership training and development and building of goals and knowledge and not just assume that a great clinical individual can move directly into a leadership role without that support and ongoing training.

Numerous careers in health care. Like we talked about, there are numerous opportunities in a variety of different areas. Obviously, a large portion of the careers in health care are clinical, and that's where a large part of our needs are these days. But just so individuals know, there are many opportunities within the health care sector to participate in health care and make a difference.

And if you can go to slide 24, please. Hiring and education...what employers want in employees. And through some of this discussion you might already know some of the things that we're looking for in employees. Obviously, we want competent employees, but also culturally diverse, so that they may begin to match the community of patients that they're taking care of and the community of individuals. And there is cultural training that is in many organizations so people understand how better to care for those patients.

Service minded—in all professions within health care, we need service minded individuals, because this is a profession where you are going to be serving others. And it may be something some people take for granted, but it really is something that we look carefully at through interviewing and really bringing people into the health care profession.

Commitment to collaboration. Through the inter-professional dialogue that we've just had, commitment to collaboration is very important, because in health care, it's very difficult to take care of patients without the team working together and working with all of the different disciplines that are within health care in order to do the best that we can for the patients that we care for.

And employee engagement. This is something that many employees, especially millennials, are looking at. And that is to really be involved in the decision-making aspects and the area that you're working within. And it heavily impacts staff satisfaction, patient safety, and quality. And so you want to look at organizations and opportunities to really get your staff engaged.

Organizational growth and future advancements in patient care come when you have an advanced...excuse me, when you have an engaged staff. So employee engagement is one of the harder things to do, but is extremely important in looking at how you can retain your staff and your leadership.

Compassionate. Compassion is something that seems to be an automatic expectation, but it is something that all employers are looking for in those that they hire in whatever area or profession they are in in the health care sector. Adaptable to change. Health care—as you have probably heard, health care is changing rapidly.

And it's important that we have a staff that's flexible and adaptable to change, and that is part of the nature of this profession, because health care has to change in order to stay up and progress and be able to provide the best care for those that we take care of, so it's a constantly learning profession.

And then the last one is strong interpersonal skills. This is extremely important. In the past we focused more on the hard skills and all of the training to have those skills, but today there's even a strong emphasis also on the soft skills, and that can't be taken for granted in health care. It's a very important skill when you're taking care and serving others. So I think now I'm going to turn it back to Denise. We have another polling slide.

Qaoud: Yes, that's correct. So you should see another polling question popping up on your screen. Same thing as the last time. Go ahead and make your selection at this time. By what percent is the health care workforce projected to grow between 2014 and 2024? a) 34 percent; b) 20 percent; c) 25 percent; or d) 22 percent? So go ahead and finish making your selection. I will stop the poll and show those results. And they should be popping up here in just a moment. OK. Looks like an overwhelming 60 percent say c) 25 percent. Pat, did you want to comment on that?

Horton: It's d) 22 percent. So it's still growing, not at quite 25 percent, but it's growing more than it did between 2004 and 2014. So it's a rapidly growing area of opportunity for individuals to pursue health care. So, and I turn it back over to Julie.

Kornegay: Yeah, thanks. So it certainly seems like there's lots of opportunity in health care. Thank you for sharing your insight with us today, Pat. We've had some great questions come in. And if you have any questions for Pat, please click the "ask question" button at the lower left section of the webinar window. Our final presentation this afternoon comes from my colleague in the New Orleans Branch. Claire Loup is going to take a few minutes to highlight some of the resources that are available to help you if you're teaching today's topic. So take it away, Claire.

Claire Loup: Thank you, Julie. Good afternoon, everyone. The Federal Reserve System provides a wealth of free teaching materials for grades K through 16 that can be found on our main system website, FederalReserveEducation.org, and on the education pages of each District site. As Julie mentioned, this afternoon I'd like to focus on a few pieces that are perfect complements to the topics of today's program when we're trying to use this information to prepare our students for the workforce.

Slide 26. Throughout this presentation we've heard about job opportunities with higher than median earning potential that don't require a four-year degree. Regardless, potential employees entering the job market are better positioned to access those jobs when they can make an honest assessment of their current human capital, when they can recognize and identify personal developmental needs, and take steps to acquire the additional training needed for the available jobs.

Just a few seconds ago, moments ago, we heard some of the key words that were ringing in my ears: leadership, collaboration, continued learning, advancement opportunities, apprenticeships. All of these terms feed into the idea of recognizing the importance of developing human capital. So the resources we've selected for this session come from Katrina's Classroom: Teaching Money Skills for Life. If you're not familiar with Katrina's Classroom, it's a four-lesson multimedia high school personal finance curriculum.

But, specifically today, we're looking at parts of Lesson Four, which focuses on development of human capital. The module has been broken down into two parts that are appropriate for single class periods, and it also has an extended version in the full curriculum. Each lesson includes a detail of procedures, document, and an accompanying PowerPoint presentation. The two lessons, Human Capital and Employment and Evaluating Postsecondary Opportunities, work in tandem with the free classroom infographic poster.

Let's go to slide 27. We'll start with the infographic poster. While you can't see the full poster here in this image, I will talk about the different components of this piece and how we can get it and how it relates to the lessons. The primary focus of this poster is that development of human capital is an ongoing process of education and training and that there is a direct relationship between an educational level or the acquisition of further training and subsequent earning potential. This infographic is available to order and print, and it's accessible online as a PDF. And the piece serves as a great visual reinforcement of the key messages of each of the lessons.

Slide 28. The activities in this part directly correlate to the sections of the infographic poster. And while you can't see them, those sections are "Defining Human Capital," "The Amount of Time It Would Take to Earn $1 Million," "Statistics Related to Earnings and Unemployment for Those Who Don't Have a High School Diploma," and "The Relationship of Earning Potential to Increased Education and Training."

In these lessons, students will think about their career goals and learn about measures of the labor market. They'll interpret charts and graphs related to educational attainment, median annual salary, and likelihood of unemployment. And they'll get to calculate how long it's going to take them to earn a million dollars.

Slide 29. Invest in yourself is the message of this first activity. As mentioned a second ago that human capital is defined as the knowledge, talent, and skills that people possess, and it's measured by their economic value. Students learn that they've already begun developing their human capital through part-time jobs, volunteer opportunities, extracurricular activities, course work, etc.

They conduct a personal self-assessment of their current human capital and develop an estimate of the increase in human capital they stand to achieve through finishing high school, and then even more, what they could potentially gain based on what they think they'll do after high school. The important message is always that human capital varies from person to person, but most importantly, you control it. You control the value of your human capital. So wisely investing in yourself is a key to making yourself more marketable for the kinds of opportunities that have just been discussed.

Slide 30. Many students dream about being millionaires, but what they might not realize is that most likely they will earn at least a million dollars over the course of their career. So this activity has students work with a partner to estimate how long in years they believe it would take to earn a million dollars based on what they think the median annual salary is of individuals who have attained a variety of different educational levels.

Once they have their estimates complete, they plot that data on a graph, and then they compare their estimates to the actual data that is tied back and found on the infographic. Once they review the current data on the infographic and plot those points, they can then analyze the information to answer several questions as well as discuss how their estimates differ from the actual values.

As we talk with our students quite often as they're working through career planning, one of the things that we really want to focus on is a realistic view of what they might hope to achieve or what might they hope to earn in that opening salary or that opening job market.

Slide 31. A chart very similar to this is at the bottom of the infographic, and it's there to remind students about the strong correlation between the level of a person's human capital and potential for increased earnings. Both factors have a correlation with the likelihood of being unemployed. And so the activity in this part walks students through interpreting data arranged on this kind of chart and serves up the catalysts to discuss concepts like national unemployment rate, the labor force, the definition of employment.

And the activity also provides data on teen unemployment rates and discusses the differences in earnings and rates of likelihood of unemployment between that and full-time employees. Again, the overarching message is to encourage students to continue to build their human capital by increasing their knowledge and learning new skills. I think that's one of the main focuses, and on one of the final slides in the previous presenter's section talked about the need for continued learning in order to take advantage of the advancement opportunities in the health care sector.

And slide 32. Part 2 focuses on "Evaluating Postsecondary Opportunities." And while the activities and the topics of today's session was more focused on the available jobs that don't necessarily require a four-year degree, the activities in this lesson are quite helpful because it provides information and suggestions for career interest inventories, and it also teaches students how to use real online tools like the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook so that they can identify the multitude of career options that are available in any individual sector.

Using the activities, they investigate the education and training required for a particular job. They look at the earnings potential. And they also look at the job outlook. Those who are planning on pursuing a two- or four-year degree have activities that offer opportunities to help them select schools that offer the programs they need.

And they can look at the costs involved in that higher education as compared to the earning potential upon graduation. One of the many benefits of this exercise is to show students that there are publicly available resources to help plan their path as they develop their human capital, but still make good financial decisions when it comes to education costs.

Slide 33. These two lessons are just a glimpse of the kinds of classroom-ready resources that are available from the education teams of the Federal Reserve. I invite you to check out our website for information about upcoming professional development opportunities and more classroom tools and resources like our Extra Credit newsletter. And coming soon, very soon, in our Extra Credit newsletter is a new lesson on developing soft skills. So, again, it ties back into increasing our human capital.

And if you're interested in teaching or using a multimedia teaching package on unemployment and other economic indicators, I invite you to check out the Classroom Economist. And with that, I'm going to turn this back over to Julie.

Kornegay: Thanks, Claire. We have reached the Q&A segment of today's program, and we have lots of questions rolling in. So I'm going to turn it over to Denise.

Qaoud: OK. Great. Our first question, which I believe is for Pat. The poll question indicates that health care is expected to grow by 22 percent between 2014 and 2024. How does that compare to other industries?

Horton: It is growing much more rapidly than other industries. In the industries that I've looked at other than health care, the ones that are growing are growing between maybe 3 percent and 5 percent, where health care is growing from 20 percent now up to 22 percent So, as you can see, there's a huge opportunity in the health care sector.

Qaoud: Thanks, Pat. Next question. Is it fair to say the market is tightening up in the nursing market?

Kornegay: Denise, who is that question for?

Qaoud: I believe that's for Pat.

Horton: Yes, there is a very tight market. There is great competition. Now if you look across the country, there are areas in our country where there is a surplus of nurses. But in the Southeast area, there is a shortage in that particular area as far as health care. So in this area, yes, there is a very tight labor market, and there is lots of competition for the individuals that are out there. And that is one of the reasons that we're looking at educational capacity and some of the other areas, so that we can educate and train more individuals to move them into the health care sector.

Andreason: Our analysis of job ads suggests that as well.

Qaoud: Great. Thank you. The next question is for Stuart. Could you tell us about some of the non-health-care opportunity occupations that are showing potential in the Southeast?

Andreason: Absolutely. We have a number that are quite prevalent, including truck drivers, which are not always long haul positions. Sometimes those are local positions, driving delivery trucks or cement trucks or being involved in construction projects. The trades are particularly important in the Southeast.

We saw through our analysis that, particularly, electricians and maintenance workers, like industrial maintenance workers, who know how to work on complex machines, whether it might be in the energy sector or other fields that are broadly across the Southeast. Some of the non-trade positions that we also saw, non-health-care positions that we saw, were retail supervisors, administrative executive and executive assistants, and office managers.

Qaoud: OK, thank you. Next question is for Pat. What are some of the high-demand jobs in health care? And what education is required? What are the salary bands for these high-demand jobs?

Horton: Well, you've seen some information that Stuart and Mels had on the nursing occupation. But if you look at the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which looks at the 30 fastest-growing occupations, 20 of those occupations were in health care. And some of those positions range from occupational therapy assistants, physical therapy assistants, physical therapy aides, home health aides. So in those areas, obviously, that requires less education. And those salaries—and I would look at them—can range beginning at $21,000, and then they go up and they vary.

And then you also see nurse practitioners, there's a huge demand for those individuals. And they make upwards of $90,000 to $100,000. But obviously, there's more training that's involved in those areas. And some of the very fastest-growing positions are personal care aides, RNs, home health aides, nursing assistants. Medical assistants are also projected to grow. So there's a broad variety, from an entry level position all the way up to a professional level position.

Qaoud: OK. At this time we are running out of time. Julie, I will hand it to you for some closing comments.

Kornegay: OK, thanks. So I want to thank everybody for listening and participating today. Our next webinar will explore careers in energy. More information is forthcoming, but we are anticipating an August date for that event. So, on slide 36, finally, on behalf of everyone, we'd like to thank you for participating today. If you have joined us via the webinar tool, you likely saw a survey link pop up on your screen. Please take a moment to complete that and let us know how we did.

We'll also send the survey out via email. You only need to fill out the survey once. The resources mentioned today are linked in the PowerPoint, so make sure to download the presentation or visit frbatlanta.org/education. If you know someone that would find this session valuable, it was recorded and will be archived on our new Maximum Employment Matters webpage in the coming weeks. We will email an update when it's ready. And with that, I officially bring this session to a close. Thanks again for joining us, and have a great rest of your day.