How Does Your Degree Measure Up?


Image by ~ Phil Moore via Flickr

A recent study has shown that personal income depends greatly on one’s choice of college studies. This might be bad news for all you art majors out there, so take into consideration which path you are traversing at the university. It may determine your future and how much you end up making in a lifetime.

According to an article by the Associated Press this week, college graduates earn an average of 84% more than high school graduates. This is like the difference between steak dinners and a can of beans. But it’s not all so easy. Taking college courses can be costly and time-consuming. Student loans will haunt you for years and years after graduation day.

Graduating from college does not necessarily guarantee gainful employment either. Even grads suffer from job loss and the woes of a lagging economy. Some areas of study fare better than others though. The degrees who suffer most from unemployment after graduation include social psychology, nuclear engineering, education administration and supervision. And those who are graced with better employment opportunities are geological and geophysical engineering, military technology, pharmacology and school student counseling.

We all want to follow our hearts and do the things we love in life, but unfortunately those things don’t always pay off. Some have realized this fact and taken to the areas of study that are proven to provide better opportunities. The most popular major in college right now is business, accounting for almost 25% of all undergrads. The least popular areas of study are industrial arts and agriculture.

Business is definitely a good path to choose for college, but will that major always ensure a brighter future? Not necessarily… A lot of job market earnings also depend upon gender as well. Men and women are interested in different things, and this rings true in college studies. The highest-paying areas of study such as engineering and pharmaceutical sciences are dominated by men. The lower earning majors include education, art and social work; fields that are dominated by women.

It would be good to know that your studies will pay off and end up paying for themselves in the long run, but it takes more than brandishing a piece of paper to land the dream job. It takes ingenuity, perseverance and determination to make it in this world. Applying for jobs can sure be a hassle, and you have to tap into all resources available to make it happen.

But the basics are clear; college grads end up making more money than those who avoid the university. Sure it’s tough to push through those four years and to keep typing out cover letters and resumes, but if you keep at it, you can in fact make things happen.

So listen to your mother. Do your homework. Go to college, and don’t settle for less. The ones who keep at it are the ones who end up making the most money.

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