Five Careers for Shy People

A shy personality won’t hold you back in these five great careers.

Small talk. Schmoozing. Networking. Buzz words like these can send shy people into a panic.

The good news is that there are careers out there that don’t necessarily require tons of chit-chat or after-hour networking.

In fact, there are quite a variety of career options open to people who fall on the more bashful side of the spectrum, according to Lisa Andrews, director of career services at the University of Maryland University College.

“Any position where you work with data and ideas instead of people would be ideal careers for introverted people,” she says.

Keep reading to learn more about five careers for shy people.

Career #1: Graphic Designer

Creativity can be a solitary process – and it’s not unusual for graphic designers to spend time alone thinking up big ideas for clients. Another plus for shy people: according to the U.S. Department of Labor, graphic designers could have the opportunity to freelance or work from home.

Related degrees: Graphic designers often have a bachelor’s degree in graphic design or fine arts, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, which adds that an associate’s degree is sometimes enough to start a career in the field of graphic design.

Average earnings: $48,140*

Career # 2: Accountant

Accountants, who ensure that financial information is correct, typically spend more time with numbers than clients, making this career track a nice match for people who enjoy data as opposed to office gossip.

Related degrees: Most accountant positions require a bachelor’s degree in accounting or finance, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Some employers might look for applicants with a master’s in business administration (MBA), with a concentration in accounting.

Average earnings: $68,960*

Career #3: Computer Programmer

Computer programmers are changing the way we interact with devices of every kind from iPads to automobiles as well as online services and business applications. “I think one of the perfect jobs for a shy person is computer programming because programmers tend to work independently, and with little to no interaction with customers,” says Casey Miller, assistant director of professional practice at the University of Maryland Baltimore County.

Related degrees: According to the U.S. Department of labor, a bachelor’s degree in an area like computer programming is often required in this career, while for some positions a master’s degree is preferred. Closely related degrees include network administration and IT & information systems.

Average earnings: $74,900*


Career #4: Actuary

Actuaries, who specialize in risk assessment, often spend their days pouring over statistics involving people – not talking to them. “Actuaries and mathematicians are usually up to their necks in databases and algorithms,” says Miller.

Related degrees: Actuaries often have a bachelor’s degree in areas like mathematics and statistics, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Other related majors include finance and business administration.

Average earnings: $98,620*

Career #5: Dental Technician

Dental technicians often work behind-the-scenes, assisting dentists and hygienists, working with a model of a patient’s mouth rather than the patient themselves.

Related degrees: Dental technicians must have a high school diploma. Formal education is available in the form of accredited dental laboratory technology programs, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Average earnings: $37,980*


*All salary data comes from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics and is based upon median earnings from May 2010.

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