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I've been working on changing my career, taking classes and trying to get projects at work that are outside my normal responsibilities.

I currently help new customers build implementation plans and run trainings, but have been getting my hands on projects involving data visualization, as well as taking math and programming classes. I'm interested in a variety of jobs where I get to work with data, and I have no desire to use my skills that involve interacting with people. Consider something like data analytics a good goal, though in reality I suspect there are several jobs I'd be happy with (hence the need for a broader resource).

What I have trouble navigating are the types of jobs I could be considered qualified for now that, with several hops, can get me towards the jobs I eventually want.

Also, for the sake of this question, assume anything internal to my current company is closed to me. My boss wants me on a much different career path than what I've chosen, and things turned a little hostile for a while when I turned him down.

What are some vetted resources that will help me understand the progression of jobs needed to get into a specific career involving data visualization \ sciences?

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    This really depends on the career path you choose and your current situation. – Prison Mike Apr 17 at 12:08
  • @MisterPositive - newguy asked me to be more specific. Does this make it less broad? If not, what sort of edits can make this less so? Maybe listing out several types of careers I'd like to get into? Or the types of resources I'm looking for? – mkdir Apr 17 at 12:20
  • @Mister Exactly, you have to mention the exact role your currently working in and what is your future vision for the next career path? – Harjot Singh Apr 17 at 12:23
  • I've tried to be much more specific in terms of jobs based on peoples' comments. – mkdir Apr 17 at 12:31
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    @JoeStrazzere I tried this when I finished my M.A. One of the pieces of advice I got was "You should go into computers. Computers are big now." This is was 2007.... :) That being said, I'm about to start a new part-time Master's, and my hopes is that the advice will have improved. – mkdir Apr 17 at 12:39
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What are some vetted resources that will help me understand the progression of jobs needed to get into a specific career involving data visualization?

I would look at jobs in your area that are in line with your goals, using indeed.com or other online job resources, to analyze the job descriptions.

Then, see where you are missing the necessary skills, and then fill those skills with either education, certifications, or contributions to open source projects you can point to in an interview and on a resume. Recruiters can help you fill the gaps too.

FWIW

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    another "positively" good answer; it seems to me the one and only way to "research" job requiements is to look at .................... job requirements. So, yeah. – Fattie Apr 17 at 13:07
  • I didn't see this edit, making the question about data visualization. I'm unclear if I can edit it now that an answer is speaking specifically towards that job. In fact, visualization is less interesting to me than something like analysis. However, the the advice in this answer seems to be general enough to apply to both. – mkdir Apr 17 at 13:28
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Question: What are vetted resources that will help me understand the progression of jobs needed to get into a specific career?

You should be talking to headhunters and job placement people on what is available and what pieces you need to get to qualify. Career fairs, college career advising, and so forth.

Ideally you'd talk to someone who is doing whatever you want (and it's not clear to me that you know that), and they would direct you to people who hire people like them.

I'm not sure what "vetted" means in this situation, it's unclear where you're at and it's also unclear that you know where you want to go so you should be talking to multiple people for advice.

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Hit the library, check out the hoary old classic "What Color is your Parachute," and read it. It has lots of general ideas about navigating a career change.

One of its ideas is systematically asking people about their jobs. Find some people in your target field, ask them for a half-hour of time, and have a conversation about their field and how to get started in it. You aren't asking for a job, you're asking for their wisdom.

There are plenty of self-paced online courses (Udacity, etc) you can use to get up to speed. Some of the best are free. All you need is a laptop and a net connection.

Don't discount your experience working with people. It's the key to effective work in every imaginable field: certainly in data visualization. After all, the most important component in a data-visualization rig is the person viewing the data. Play up your people experience in your resume.

A couple of people where I work are in a very similar situation to yours. If those people came to me (I'm a senior developer with responsibility for data) for advice, I would welcome it. We'd grab lunch and talk it over.

Go for it.

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