Deciding on a college degree program can be a difficult task. Although you know you want to go to college, that doesn’t necessarily mean you know what to study. How do you know if you’ll enjoy a particular career? What kind of degree does your dream job require? These are important questions that can have a big impact on the path you choose.
With so many degree choices available today, you don’t have to limit yourself. Here are four things to keep in mind as you plot your future academic career.
1. Know What You Love
Take time to explore your interests. What would you enjoy doing every day for the rest of your life? Your hobbies and passions can help guide you to the right degree program.
2. Consider Earning Potential
Keeping in mind what you love to do, look at what will make you enough money. In a perfect world everyone would be able to make a living at what they love to do, but sadly that is not always the case.
Before entering any degree program, you should spend time looking at the earning potential in that career field. Websites like PayScale, Glassdoor, The Hamilton Project, and job-posting sites like Monster can give you some idea of average salary and earning potential. However, keep in mind that any salary figure you find represents current trends, with a lot depending on location, how the economy is doing, and many more factors.
3. Consider Your Post-College Goals
As much as you want that degree, your goal is probably not just to have the piece of paper. You want to take that degree and the knowledge you gained and put it to work in the world.
Because of that, make sure you figure in your future career goals when you are choosing a degree program. Don’t just make a two-year or four-year plan. Make a five-year or ten-year plan, and choose a degree that will enable those plans.
4. Spend Time in the Field
It’s a terrible thing to spend multiple years and thousands of dollars on a chosen career path, only to find that when you get into that job, you hate it. As much as your professors will try to explain real life on the job to you, the everyday experience might be different. Sometimes this just means a little adjustment. Sometimes this means a career change.
Spend some time volunteering in your field. Look for internships and part-time jobs, or request a job shadow at a local company that interests you. You’ll be surprised at how happy people will be to help you out. Don’t be afraid to ask.
College is an exciting time. Make the most of it. With a little planning and forethought, you can choose a degree program that you will love and that will lead you to the career path you want. For more information about the right program for you, contact Stevens-Henager College.
Stevens-Henager College admits students of any race, color, and national or ethnic origin.