While the pandemic may have changed the way that classrooms and schools operate, the fact remains that having a formal education at the post-secondary level makes you more attractive to potential employers, and it can earn you more money and benefits. In fact, the US Bureau of Labour Statistics found that Americans who completed a bachelor’s degree made nearly double that of those who had a non-degree award, some college education, a high school education, or less.
As adults who have settled into a routine, whether you’re in a 9-5 or doing shift-work, the concept of going back to school can be daunting. Not only is it expensive, but it means reworking your schedule, your plans, your life. Understanding this, colleges and universities around the world offer accelerated degrees. An expedited education means you can begin your new career sooner. However, education is an investment, and if you want a return on that investment it is important to choose wisely. Though they seem to many to be obvious choices, business or marketing fields are saturated with new grads and people trying to work their way up the ladder. Think about fields that are growing, not only in the immediate sense but also in the longer-term future. With that in mind, here are four of the top degrees that you should consider.
Nursing requires employees to achieve a standard of education including certifications, and participation in and adherence to regulating bodies. While nurses fulfill an integral role in the medical field, in most cases they are not required to complete a decade of degrees to be able to practice their occupation. Of course, we’re not comparing nurses and doctors – they’re apples and oranges). Stil, nursing degrees are often overlooked for careers that will seemingly lead to a higher paycheck. However, one analysis showed that nurses with associates degrees at the community-college level actually earned more than those graduates from a dozen master’s programs at Harvard. There are many accelerated nursing degree programs across the country, all offering their own areas of specialty, such as mental health nursing, pediatrics, geriatrics, and many others. If it is an area that interests you, you shouldn’t have much trouble finding a school or two near you.
Information Technology and Computer Sciences
What makes the world go round? Money! Unlike blacksmiths, milkmen, and VCR repairmen, this is one of the industries that have stood the test of time, and won’t be going anywhere any time soon. Just think of the guys who make the most money in the movies? The people working in the stock market, the less exciting but ever fruitful accounting, and banking of course. While working in finance requires a reasonable grasp of numbers, in terms of where you can end up the opportunities are pretty much endless as it is a skill that can be transferable across the globe. These opportunities exist in just about every field, as any business or organization, non- or for-profit has dealings with money. Of course, the availability of finance roles is based on the economy. As the global economy recovers from the pandemic, and we move into the roaring twenties, part II, there is a high likelihood that this field is going to boom once again.
Society’s infatuation with Ivy League schools and ostentatiously titled degrees bears at least partial responsibility for the general perception of blue-collar work as inferior, whether in social status, salary, or both. However, electricians can earn $30,000 more in their first year of work than a graduate with a business degree, and even an MBA doesn’t guarantee higher pay, though it does mean a longer school career. While third-party affiliates are seeing changes in their organizational structure, thanks to technological advancements and globalization, the need for trades does and will always remain. Of course, apprenticeship is a popular course, and even a necessary one for some trades, and a formal education from an accredited school isn’t necessary. However, the benefit of achieving a degree is that your education will be recognized by corporations, and it can offer greater opportunities for advancement and therefore higher earning potential.
Making the decision to head back to school as an adult who’s been working is a big decision that can easily overwhelm. However, universities understand the weight of the decision, and this is why they create alternative paths to the standard degree programs like accelerated programs. Accelerated programs are designed to get you into a new career faster, so you can increase your earning potential and meet your dreams faster. There are some excellent online resources that are designed to help you make the right decision, getting you one step closer to a better future for yourself and your family.