Choosing a Future Career Path

It goes without saying an Art major won’t be able to rake in copious amounts of money in comparison to a Law or Computer Science major. But where would our society find itself, if everyone around was either an IT person or a Lawyer? In the abyss of boringness, eventually. However, when it comes down to salary, whereas many things in our lives always come down to money and its amount, choosing your career path as early as possible is much recommended.

Although students don’t have a habit of deciding on their life plans at such early stages, they really should do it. With skyrocketing tuition fees of some of the college major programs and rapidly increasing unemployment rates in some of the educational fields (Humanities, mainly), it’s necessary to take into consideration such aspect as a degree return on investment, meaning that after spending for four-five years at college, you could be able to actually find a well-paid job without having to bite the bullet in the process.

How College Major Can Influence Your Career

Some food for thought

First and foremost, decide on what’s important for you in terms of career choice. Money over self-actualization, or doing what you like for living over financial welfare and material comforts. Or maybe you can work anything out, which includes both doing what you like and earning higher six figures a year?

Recent studies suggest, students graduating in STEM fields (Science, Technology, Math, Engineering) are able to find employment pretty fast, many IT students are recorded before even graduation. On the other hand, students preferring humanities, liberal arts and social sciences find a post-graduate career search more difficult. Get this – job market is tight, recession is strong, job competition is stiff.

So, what’s better for you – a job you hate but letting you afford what most people can’t, or a fulfilling one, which nevertheless has a thin bank account side-effect? The heart might be telling you to choose the last and hope for the better, while your mind will definitely tell you opt for the first. Anywho, a certain compromise is needed. After all, life isn’t all rainbows and butterflies.

Different degrees have different value

Chemistry, finance and nursing have somewhat the lowest unemployment rates, so in case you chose these areas, finding a job won’t take long. In the meantime, with engineering, math and IT having the highest starting wages, unemployment rates are surprisingly above average.

Speaking of humanities, social sciences and liberal arts, there’re the highest unemployment rates and lowest starting salaries. Surprisingly, thousands of students still seek to graduate in these areas. But why? Why would anyone choose a low salary and unemployment over coding in a comfy office? Well, tuition fees are lower, some finding it easier to learn poetry rather than law, while many believe Humanities help build a more flexible, well-rounded personality that can succeed in anything, including science.

Blessed is he who believes. With that said, a number of Humanities college graduates in comparison to STEM students is 10 to 1. Most agree it’s easier to get higher grades, it’s generally easier to study liberal arts and social sciences rather than math, and tuition fees are more affordable.

All in all, the question of what career path is better is tough and can’t be easily decided on. One thing is clear – you have to elaborate on what you’re going to do after high school and what professional occupation you’re willing to pursue well in advance.

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Adam Stone
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