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The Child Development program is relevant for individuals pursuing various interests and goals, including early childhood education teachers, child development specialists, and recreation leaders; those interested in professional careers providing services to children and families -- in children's centers, family day-care, recreational programs, special education programs, community agencies, health programs, and child advocacy; and those interested in marketing children's books, toys, magazines, and educational software. Parents and potential parents will also benefit from the program.

A Potential Major if You...

  • Enjoy working with children and parents of diverse backgrounds
  • Possess patience, emotional stability, good health, and physical stamina
  • Can tolerate noise and confusion and remain levelheaded
  • Are concerned about the welfare of children
  • Can work independently and under close supervision

Employment Outlook

The need for quality childcare is urgent throughout the country. Job opportunities exist in children's centers, infant/toddler programs, after-school and summer-camp programs, and all types of child development centers, both public and private. In Orange County, the employment outlook is especially promising as more and more young families with two working parents move to the area.

Childcare center staff may start out at the level of childcare aide with between three and six units in progress. Aides may advance rapidly to become full teachers (after they have completed 12 units) and ultimately may receive added pay and benefits in programs which require the Early Childhood Education certificate (30 units) and experience.

Job Opportunities

With an occupational certificate:
  • Childcare worker, staff aide, or teacher

With a bachelor's or advanced degree:
Preschool or elementary school teacher
Center coordinator
Program director
Teacher's aide