How Far Ahead Does a Bachelor’s Degree Get You?

Let’s talk about how much of a difference having a Bachelor’s degree makes for your career pursuits. Keep in mind this information is to be filtered through your own opinions on the matter, we are not attempting to persuade the reader one way or the other. We want to help bring some of the stats to your attention so that you are better equipped to formulate your own ideas on the matter. In her article, Ellen Ruppel Shell says the benefits of having a college degree “…will begin to dim.” Read the full article here .

We appear to be approaching a time when, even for middle-class students, the economic benefit of a college degree will begin to dim. Since 2000, the growth in the wage gap between high school and college graduates has slowed to a halt; 25 percent of college graduates now earn no more than does the average high school graduate.
Part of the reason is oversupply. Technology increased the demand for educated workers, but that demand has been consistently outpaced by the number of people — urged on by everyone from teachers to presidents — prepared to meet it.

Shell , Ellen Ruppel (2018, May 16). College May Not Be Worth It Anymore [Web log post]. Retrieved March 13, 2019, from https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/16/opinion/college-useful-cost-jobs.html

The opinions about whether or not having a degree fall on a wide spectrum. You can speak to one individual who will tell you without a doubt that having a degree is a waste of valuable time and money, you can then turn around and speak to someone who believes having a degree is essential for seeing any kind of career success and advancement. For example, Ryan Guina states in his article that getting a degree is not necessarily the right choice for everyone. He explains that degrees are not a one size fits all solution. Rather factors such as marketable skills, on the job training and self-directed training can be more beneficial for some individuals. He does go on to say that he is by no means discouraging people from getting a degree, he is simply stating that he believes there are other viable options for achieving career success and that the pursuit of a degree is a very personal decision that depends on factors not directly related to the degree equals success mentality.

There is a handy pay indicator you can reference on payscale.com

It shows the expected salary or hourly rate you might achieve in various jobs if you have BA. The guide states that the average salary for someone with a Bachelor’s degree is 61K and the average hourly rate for someone with a Bachelor’s degree is $18/hr. With these values in mind, you can determine whether or not you believe getting a Bachelor’s degree will be beneficial for your chosen career path, or perhaps it may help you make an informed decision about the potential you can reach through an education and possible career change.

Here are some additional articles you can read on the subject:

  • https://www.thebalance.com/college-graduate-salaries-expectations-vs-reality-4142305
  • https://work.chron.com/degree-increase-salary-25300.html
  • https://smartasset.com/retirement/the-average-salary-by-education-level

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