Early childhood development and early childhood education are challenging and rewarding fields. The demand for professionals with these backgrounds has grown steadily in recent years, and is expected to continue to increase by 15-20 percent over the next decade, according to the U.S. Department of labor and statistics.
The Bachelors of Science in Child and Family Studies with a concentration in child development prepares graduates to teach or administer in private early childhood programs.
With an increase in both dual income families and single parent households, there will be a greater need for care of children under the age of six. In fact, Child Care Aware reported in 2013 that 62.3 percent of children under six years of age were in need of care by someone other than a parent.
They may also seek employment as trainers for resource and referral agencies, such as Head Start, the department of child and family services and adoption agencies,or serve as education coordinators in early childhood facilities.
As the profession grows, qualifications for employees are also increasing. Currently employed professionals with early childhood credential or associate degrees are required to complete a bachelor’s degree – especially those in Head Start programs.
A bachelor’s degree is also required by state licensing and regulation entities for those looking to move into administrative roles within early childhood education. Salary increases may also be possible for those with additional education.
One option for those interested in child development careers is to begin by earning the Child Development Associate certification (CDA) and continue with a bachelor’s degree. Individuals interested in CDA classes should consider taking them with an accredited university where they will count as CDA certification hours, as well as college credit hours.
EKU graduates have found themselves well-prepared for graduate study and have also found employment with:
- Head Start and Early Start
- Save The Children
- Non-profit agencies
- Public & private schools
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, Childcare Workers, on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/ooh/personal-care-and-service/childcare-workers.htm (visited February 06, 2015).