Major in Something that Will Actually Help You Find a High-Paying Job
There’s a great deal of uncertainty about what kind of future is waiting for tomorrow’s workforce. With student debt at record highs, the choice of what to study is more important than ever before.
While conventional wisdom dictates that a law degree, an MBA, a PhD or an MD are likely to provide job prospects and strong future earnings, the truth is that these degrees are not only expensive, but they are also less likely to guarantee future employment than they might have in the past.
Instead, there are other college majors that have higher-than-average starting salaries, enormous growth and a strong potential for future earnings.
The Future is STEM
We live in an increasingly technological world. Everything from business, to healthcare, to manufacturing to law enforcement and even farming is being affected and changed by technology.
To keep pace, companies need individuals with training in STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. A degree in chemical engineering, computer engineering, computer science, mechanical engineering, applied mathematics or information technology can open doors to careers that have above-average starting salaries and long-term job prospects for the future.
Do the Numbers – Accounting, Operations, Human Resources
While MBA programs seem to be everywhere these days, more and more companies find themselves needing experts in fields such as accounting, operations and human resources. While these careers may seem less glamorous, the ability to track money, keep supply chains moving and hire and manage the right employees is an essential part of the success of every company.
Old Careers Are New Again
A generation ago, students were told to get an education in order to get out of industries like farming, construction and manufacturing. Now, these industries have been transformed by technology, and there is a growing demand for the next generation of workers in these fields.
- In the U.S. there is an enormous demand for skilled labor in the construction trades, and even more demand for construction managers who can oversee large projects involving hundreds of contractors. Construction management increasingly requires advanced training in business, law, engineering and even robotic technology.
- We can go without a car or an investment portfolio, but we all have to eat. Farming is now agribusiness and is employing technologies ranging from chemistry to robotics to food sciences.
- While many people think of a factory floor as being dirty and dangerous, the modern factory looks more like a NASA laboratory. With high demand for coders and technology specialists, manufacturing is an industry that has a high demand for workers with the right skills.
Want to be a healer? While medical school has become increasingly competitive and expensive, more and more of real work of healthcare is dependent on America’s nurses, nurse practitioners and physician assistants (PAs).
With increasing demand, strong unions and an increasing share of responsibility, nursing is one of the fastest-growing careers in healthcare. In addition, as technology becomes a bigger part of healthcare there is a growing demand for Allied Health Professionals. These include dental hygienists, sonographers, dietitians, medical technologists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, radiographers, respiratory therapists and speech-language pathologists.
Where You Go Matters
One thing to keep in mind is that where you go to train does matter. Many for-profit colleges offer online degrees and make promises of short training programs and job placement. However, many of these schools also see students drop out within the first year.
Instead, you should look for traditional college training programs. While large universities are the most obvious choice, don’t limit yourself. There are smaller colleges that have excellent training programs. Many of these schools can be more generous with financial aid and scholarships as well. Another key resource is your local community college. Many of these schools offer affordable programs with excellent faculty who can help you get your fundamental training. From there you can always transfer to the larger colleges and universities with greater confidence and at a lower long-term cost.
Scholarships Are Available
While the cost of an education is on the rise, it’s also easier than ever to find scholarships and grants to help you pay for your education.
One resource with local roots is Scholly, started by a Drexel University graduate with offices in Center City. Scholly is an app that allows students to find scholarships that are right for them.
When it comes to scholarships, don’t be afraid to be creative in your search. You can find scholarships based on a wide range of factors including where you reside, what you plan to study, and more. There’s a scholarship for teenagers who have worked as golf caddies, so anything is possible.
Looking for more ideas on how to pay for college? Come talk with us today! We can help you with loans, financing, and other ideas on how to save for the future.