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Career Development Specialist connects individuals with potential employers and helps career seekers learn to interview, job hunt, and resume writing skills. They help you choose a profession, improve your skills, and advance along a job path and bring you closer to your ideal job, skill set, and lifestyle.

Generally, you need to possess a bachelor's degree or associate degree in training and development, human resources, education, or instructional design to become a Career Development Specialist. Additionally, experience in business administration or social science will help you in securing a better post.

Most of the graduates who approach this field end up laying claim to annual earnings at $45,166. The current median pay for a Career Development Specialist ranges from $33,915 to $61,150 in the U.S. However, this figure can vary significantly depending upon your experience and skills.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a career development specialist. For example, did you know that they make an average of $22.95 an hour? That's $47,739 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 9% and produce 28,900 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Career Development Specialist Do

There are certain skills that many career development specialists have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed communication skills, creativity and instructional skills.

Learn more about what a Career Development Specialist does

How To Become a Career Development Specialist

If you're interested in becoming a career development specialist, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 64.1% of career development specialists have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 18.5% of career development specialists have master's degrees. Even though most career development specialists have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a career development specialist. When we researched the most common majors for a career development specialist, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or master's degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on career development specialist resumes include associate degree degrees or high school diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a career development specialist. In fact, many career development specialist jobs require experience in a role such as case manager. Meanwhile, many career development specialists also have previous career experience in roles such as administrative assistant or customer service representative.

Career Development Specialist Career Paths

Average Salary for a Career Development Specialist

Career Development Specialists in America make an average salary of $47,739 per year or $23 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $64,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $35,000 per year.
Average Career Development Specialist Salary
$47,739 Yearly
$22.95 hourly
$35,000
10 %
$47,000
Median
$64,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Career Development Specialist Education

Career Development Specialist Majors

21.0 %

Career Development Specialist Degrees

Bachelors

64.1 %

Masters

18.5 %

Associate

10.8 %

Top Colleges for Career Development Specialists

1. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

2. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

3. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$50,420
Enrollment
7,582

4. San Diego State University

San Diego, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,488
Enrollment
30,018

5. Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,740
Enrollment
5,567

6. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238

7. New York University

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

8. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

9. University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

Minneapolis, MN • Private

In-State Tuition
$14,760
Enrollment
31,451

10. Washington University in St Louis

Saint Louis, MO • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,399
Enrollment
7,356

Top Skills For a Career Development Specialist

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 9.1% of career development specialists listed professional development on their resume, but soft skills such as communication skills and creativity are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Career Development Specialist Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Career Development Specialist templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Career Development Specialist resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Career Development Specialist Demographics

Career Development Specialist Gender Distribution

Female
Female
71%
Male
Male
29%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among career development specialists, 71.1% of them are women, while 28.9% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among career development specialists is White, which makes up 68.4% of all career development specialists.

  • The most common foreign language among career development specialists is Spanish at 87.0%.

Online Courses For Career Development Specialist That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
The eParachute Introduction to Your Career and Job Search
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Discover Your Purpose & Ideal Career w/ the Author of the #1 Career and Job-Hunting Book What Color is Your Parachute?...

Job Search Success Strategies: Proven Job Hunting Strategies
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You Want to Land Your Dream Job? Learn How to Impress Recruiters, Beat the Competition and Win Job Interviews!...

Interviewing Skills for Jobs: Ace the Job Interview
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Interviewing Skills - How to ace any job interview-Excel in all Job Interviewing skills...

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Best States For a Career Development Specialist

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a career development specialist. The best states for people in this position are Washington, New York, Texas, and New Hampshire. Career development specialists make the most in Washington with an average salary of $66,086. Whereas in New York and Texas, they would average $57,882 and $57,303, respectively. While career development specialists would only make an average of $55,066 in New Hampshire, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Texas

Total Career Development Specialist Jobs:
4,432
Highest 10% Earn:
$79,000
Location Quotient:
1.51 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Pennsylvania

Total Career Development Specialist Jobs:
2,216
Highest 10% Earn:
$72,000
Location Quotient:
1.32 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Wyoming

Total Career Development Specialist Jobs:
148
Highest 10% Earn:
$65,000
Location Quotient:
1.71 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Career Development Specialists

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Top Career Development Specialist Employers

Most Common Employers For Career Development Specialist

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1The Doe Fund$58,626$28.1913
2Hope Network$49,881$23.986
3YTI Career Institute$49,733$23.917
4Ultimate Medical Academy$49,556$23.8213
5Gerald R. Ford International Airport$49,296$23.705
6United Way of Central Alabama$48,911$23.516
7Maximus$48,832$23.4825
8Education Corporation of America$48,688$23.417
9US Air Conditioning Distributors$48,340$23.246
10Prospect$48,118$23.134