How to Become a Direct Support Professional?

Are you thinking of becoming a Direct Support Professional or already started your career and planning the next step? Learn how to become a Direct Support Professional, what skills you need to succeed, how to advance your career and get promoted, and what levels of pay to expect at each step on your career path. Explore new Direct Support Professional job openings and options for career transitions into related roles.

Steps to Become a Direct Support Professional

If you're considering starting your Direct Support Professional career path, it's important to note the skills, qualifications, and time it takes to become a professional Direct Support Professional and how to advance your career path. Below are the steps generally required to begin and advance your Direct Support Professional career.
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1

Earn a Degree

To begin your Direct Support Professional career path, a Bachelor's Degree in music or a related field is usually necessary in order to remain a competitive option for employers. Focus on industry-specific skill development during your education in order to be properly equipped when applying for entry-level positions and entering the job force. A Direct Support Professional internship may be required to earn your Bachelor's Degree and acquire necessary on-the-job skills before entering the workforce.
2

Choose a Specialty in Your Field

As an Direct Support Professional, you may be required to choose a specialty within your field. Determine which part of the Direct Support Professional field you feel strongest in, and continue taking active steps toward growing in your chosen Direct Support Professional specialty.
3

Get an Entry-Level Position as a Direct Support Professional

Once you've acquired a Bachelor's Degree in music or a related field, you'll typically begin your career as an entry-level Direct Support Professional. In general, you can become a Direct Support Professional after completing your 4 year Bachelor's Degree in a related discipline. Depending on the type of Direct Support Professional role you’re pursuing, you may want to explore certification in certified nursing assistant.
4

Advance in Your Direct Support Professional Career

Following entry-level, there are several Direct Support Professional career path levels to advance into. It can take 2 years as an entry-level Direct Support Professional to progress to the next seniority level position. Each advanced Direct Support Professional position requires approximately 8 years of experience at each level to advance in your Direct Support Professional career path. It may be necessary to receive additional education, an advanced degree such as a Master's Degree in a related field, or special certifications in order to advance your Direct Support Professional career path.
5

Continued Education for Your Direct Support Professional Career Path

Not all industries and companies require continued education to advance your Direct Support Professional career path. However, earning this degree may help you advance to higher-earning positions more quickly. Earning a Bachelor's Degree in music can take 4 years to complete. People that have earned their Bachelor's Degree typically make $35,539 compared to $24,127 for those without that type of degree.

We don't have enough career path data for Direct Support Professional jobs. Below are job titles that share similar skill sets.

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Direct Support Professional Career Path

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Related Careers in the Healthcare Industry

Interested in other Healthcare careers? Below are occupations that have high affinity with Direct Support Professional skills. Discover some of the most common Direct Support Professional career transitions, along with skills overlap.

Caregiver
0% skills overlap
21% transitioned to Caregiver