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Thread: Hands-free career?

  1. #1

    Hands-free career?

    Im an ex police officer with some experience in real estate and real estate management. I need to find a new career path, but I'm not quite sure what a quadriplegic with no hand movement is qualified to do?

    I thought about accounting, paralegal and computer technology, but wasn't quite sure if there was a market, or if it was possible for someone with my degree of disability to accomplish?

    Does anyone know someone else in my position, or have any suggestions or ideas to offer regarding what steps to take? I already spoke with a vocational rehabilitation counselor, who said they're a month backlogged, so I'm waiting for them to call back.

    Any help appreciated.

  2. #2
    Bought my house and sold my condo with a realtor who has a C4-5 injury. He works in a team with his wife (also a realtor). He does most of the office work, but also does open houses and takes clients on house visits, with his wife helping for things like driving or setting up a portable ramp. They specialize in accessible housing or in housing that can be fairly easily made accessible. It can be done with some creativity, and with your background there should be no reason you should have to learn new skills or knowledge.

    I know others at a similar level who are psychologists, social workers, attorneys and teachers, as well as entrepreneurs, including web site design, CAD, and computer software design. On-time tutoring for junior high or high school students may also be an option for some, or tutoring in your home may be an option.


  3. #3
    Couple of ideas (I'm a quad as well):

    1. Anything using your voice primarily as your means to earn a living: Disc Jockey, Real Estate Office Mgmt, Voiceovers / commercials, financial advisor, attorney, anything office and supervisory related.

    2. Geographic location: pick a spot somewhere that you can dig your heels in and stay. Become a part of the community.

    3. Accessibility: pick a career that doesn't necessarily depend on excessive travel, long commutes, excessive hours, etc.

    4. Assistance: What type of dress (suit, casual,?) is required and how much time and assistance will you need getting ready in the morning and going to bed at night.

    Logistics, imo, are very important. The easier they are, the more you can accomplish and be depended upon. Whatever you decide, good luck.

  4. #4
    I've been a quad since early childhood, so I didn't have pre-injury skills. I do the web site design/maintenance business as KLD said. Real estate wouldn't be bad, but remember most houses are not accessible.
    C2/3 quad since February 20, 1985.

  5. #5

    Thank you very much for your input. You all made excellent points.

    Still trying to decide what area of employment is most likely to be as satisfying as my prior work. I've had jobs that I loved, and jobs that I hate, and I know it makes a big difference if you like what you're doing.

    Radio/voiceover work sounds really intriguing Chris. I still have a pretty strong deep voice, and enjoy talk radio, I think I may want to look into that.

    Trainman, do you find your computer work fulfilling? How much training did it require? could someone get into that, who isn't necessarily a computer whiz? I have pretty decent basic knowledge of the computer, but not in depth.

    Thanks again guys!

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    last house on the left
    If you could deal with the incredible stress air traffic controller is a possibility.

  7. #7
    If you get a talk show, I hope I can hear it!

    Something else you could possibly do is customer service for a company...for when folks call in and want help, like on computers, etc...or when they call in and want information...just a thought...

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by wonless View Post
    Trainman, do you find your computer work fulfilling? How much training did it require? could someone get into that, who isn't necessarily a computer whiz? I have pretty decent basic knowledge of the computer, but not in depth.
    I've been doing something computer related since grade school, so I'm pretty familiar with it. I'm pretty well all self-taught with doing web sites and everything related, so it did take training, but at my own speed.

    I'm not real sure what you're looking for as fulfilling. The work is varied as my clients consist of a wide range of trades. Working from home is nice during the colder months or when dealing with skin trouble. However, it is not my dream job and does mean I'm basically tied to my computer and inbox all day.
    C2/3 quad since February 20, 1985.

  9. #9
    Thank you to everyone for your assistance.

    I feel just as confused as when I started, but perhaps a little more motivated. I'm going to talk to a career advisor to try and scare up some ideas there.

  10. #10
    I'd pass on the paralegal certificate as the market isn't good unless you're experienced in bankruptcy law. Also, most jobs in the field usually are litigation oriented which aren't really 'hands free'.

    ETA I just saw you used to be a police officer that could prove useful to a criminal defense attorney or an investigative company. You might want to talk to someone in those fields to get their opinion.
    Embrace uncertainty. Hard problems rarely have easy solutions. Jonah Lehrer

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