The Coronavirus pandemic has changed life in many ways. With people stuck at home during lockdowns, and enormous changes in workplaces, many are considering lifestyle changes. Priorities and career preferences are changing. The admissions office of our massage school in Portland has fielded many inquiries lately, and we’d like to share why so many people are curious about earning a massage license at this time.

What’s Driving Admissions Inquiries at Massage Schools:
Portland, OR to Portland, ME, people across the country are considering a career in massage. While this is always true, it seems the Coronavirus crisis has caused a major shift in professional choices. Here are some of the factors we believe are driving this adjustment, culled from the epiphanies of recent applicants to East West College of the Healing Arts.

  1. Personal priorities are changing.
    The COVID lockdowns slammed the brakes on life as we knew it. With so much time at home, many people reflected on their priorities. The tragedy of the past year brought to focus for many what matters most to them. Why work a job that isn’t in line with your personal priorities
  2. Many jobs became obsolete.
    As the New York Times reported last fall, the long term shut down caused tens of thousands of layoffs, in industries such as travel, entertainment, hospitality, non-profit, and retail. More than 47 million Americans have filed for unemployment in the past year. And some economists are predicting that many of those positions will not come back. Many recognize unemployment as an opportunity to gain education for a new career. Combine unemployment with a job that no longer exists, and you may say to yourself what we hear from many applicants: “I recognize that what I do is not fulfilling and now I want to do something else.” When you can’t keep doing what you were doing before, why not pivot to something you are passionate about?
  3. Cultivating a Fulfilling Plan B.
    Long gone are the days when a single career path provided long-term stability. Today’s workers recognize the need for several potential professional options. When Plan A doesn’t work, massage is a career that provides usable, in-demand skills.
  4. A Great Time to Manifest Dreams.
    Many of us have been sitting at home for months. Why not use this time to follow through on your dreams? When you look back on this historic era, what do you want to remember? Memories of acquiring a whole new life path would be sweet.
    Mory Fontanez, purpose coach and CEO of 822 Group, put it perfectly while speaking with Business Insider:  “Crisis is an opportunity. It asks us to pause and look deeply and honestly at all the things we have been doing day in and day out without really thinking about whether those things fulfilled us, played on our strengths, or aligned with our own purpose.”
  5. Hunger for Fulfilling People-Facing Careers.
    Massage therapists truly put the “care” in “career.” What might surprise you is how many service-oriented individuals discover massage as a rewarding second or third career. For instance, we hear from overworked social workers who are extremely overworked, and ready for a job where people are happy to see them, and even happier when they leave.
  6. A Job that Feeds Your Soul
    Watching the past year unfold has been heart-wrenching. Many people are now unwilling to waste their precious time on a job that does nothing more than pay the bills. The pandemic has rearranged priorities, so that many now want a job that feeds their soul. Many people do not want to go back to “normal” or “before times,” as far as work is concerned.

And for those who will retain their previous work, many will continue to work from home, potentially opening time to learn a second career. Slack recently interviewed 4,700 knowledge workers (those who work with data, typically white-collar desk jobs) and found that very few of them (12%) want to return to a 9-to-5 office model. The majority of those interviewed (72%) would prefer a hybrid model, with some at-home work permitted. It is likely that flexible work arrangements will continue, as many business owners have found their teams can be just as productive–if not more productive–while working from home.

Our admissions team hears such comments from people all over, including Florida, Minneapolis, Washington DC, and even Canada. Why are we receiving calls from such far-flung places? It’s simple: We have a reputation in the massage industry for producing deeply knowledgeable, exceptionally prepared massage school graduates.

We provide COMTA-accredited massage education which equips our alumni to work as medically-informed professionals, not just service providers. If the Coronavirus era has piqued your interest in a massage therapy career, we invite you to call our Portland massage school today at (503) 233-6500, or visit our massage therapy admissions website. Speak with a friendly East West College admissions team member today about making your dreams of an LMT lifestyle come true.