One of the rewarding career paths San Francisco psychology students can seek is as a life coach. Although not yet listed as an occupation by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, professional life coaching is a growing industry used by celebrities, business professionals and tech executives such as Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Google CEO Eric Schmidt. For a look into a career as a life coach, Bay Area native Suzanne Strisower offers a look into this fast-growing profession.

(Photo Courtesy of Suzanne Strisower)

(Photo Courtesy of Suzanne Strisower)

What is your background and education?

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“I received my M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute and then attended several professional coaching programs: Mentor Coach, helps professionals transition into coaching, Life Purpose Institute for certifications in Life and Career Coaching and Coach for Life to bring a spiritual focus to their coaching. For decades, I was a residential treatment counselor and social worker. I made a career change to work with accomplished and self-directed people again. My professional memberships include the International Coach Federation and the American Psychological Association.”

What services do you provide as a life coach?

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“Life coaches offer a wide array of services and expertise, my focus is working with midlife professionals wanting to make career change or discover fulfilling ways to reinvent themselves. Often clients start by finding their purpose in life, then finding careers or other endeavors in alignment with that vision. My coaching practice includes helping clients connect with a bigger vision or mission beyond themselves personally, professionally or spiritually and ways to implement and execute those goals. I work as an author coach to help nonfiction authors write and promote their books. I founded an internet radio platform called the Living Well Talk Radio Network to promote conscious business owners, clients and authors.”

What career advice can you share with people interested in a career in coaching?

“Coaching is a fantastic for professionals with expertise and a desire to help others achieve their goals across a wide spectrum of specialties including: life, career, wellness, weight, nutrition, spiritual, ADHD. You can be a coach at any age get a coaching certification for between $6-10,000 and only 120 hours to get you certified and you are ready to start your business.”

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Randy Yagi is a freelance writer covering all things San Francisco. In 2012, he was awarded a Media Fellowship from Stanford University. His work can be found on