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When it comes to picking a major, earning potential is only part of the picture. After all, if you're a born English major, forcing yourself into a STEM field is more a recipe for discomfort than a guarantee of riches down the line. Once you know what you want to study, you'll need to find the school whose graduates in that concentration find the most success after graduation.
Want the highest salary potential for your tuition dollars? PayScale's College Return on Investment report looks at the schools that have set up their graduates for the highest-earning jobs.
A recent Gallup survey found that business leaders rate job candidates' applied skills and knowledge higher than where they went to school or even which major they concentrated in.
In the U.S., teachers make average salaries in the $40,000 - 45,000 range. But for one elite tutor in South Korea, teaching earns a wage comparable with that of a CEO or another captain of industry.
Recent research from Pew Research Center's Social & Demographic Trends project shows that college, although more expensive than it was just a few years ago, is probably worth the money -- especially if young workers want to make money and have careers they care about.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 284,000 American workers toiled for minimum wage last year, despite having a bachelor's degree. CNBC points out that this number, while significantly lower than the 327,000 overeducated minimum wage earners in 2010, is up a whopping 70 percent from 2002. To some extent, it's because today's college grads need to have more skills than previous generations, in order to impress employers.
Community college used to be where students went to start their academic career, often for less money than they'd pay to attend a four-year school. If you wanted vocational training, or a degree that would transfer to another, longer program, community college was the place to start. But in California, at least, community colleges might soon offer four-year programs -- in high-demand concentrations.
Want a job that will let you work from home, at least part of the time? Better get a college degree. Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that workers with a four-year degree are much more likely to be allowed to telecommute.
Arts and humanities majors might never make as much as engineering and math students, but they're far from poverty-stricken, says a recent study. In fact, the report shows that liberal arts grads eventually make up the salary gap between their trajectory and that of other professionals.
A college degree allows workers in many fields to command more money -- provided they're able to get a job. In an economy where that's still far from a sure thing, how can universities justify charging ever-higher amounts for tuition and fees? In part, it's because they have to.
Year Up is an organization dedicated to closing gap between open opportunities at tech companies and urban young adults who have the desire, but not the skills and experience, to fill those roles.
For every fine arts major who goes into his chosen field of study with his head held high, there's another who cringes as he registers for classes, following his heart but fearing a future of unemployment. Well, fear not, our artistic friends: your employment opportunities might be better than you'd expect.
In-state tuition at four-year public colleges and universities increased by only 2.9 percent for this year, on average, according to the College Board. That's the smallest increase since 1975, and a departure from the recent trend of skyrocketing tuition fees.
Adrian College offers a perk for prospective students concerned about low-paying jobs and high loans after graduation: starting next year, the Michigan school will reimburse graduates for their student loans, if they make less than $20,000 a year.
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