University Degree Is Underestimated
Do I Need a Degree to Develop My Career?
While it has been statistically proven that higher education increases long-term employment and potential earnings for the overall population, it does not mean that you cannot be extremely successful without a degree. It also does not mean that having a degree alone will hand you the success you are looking for without applying initiative, work ethic, and interpersonal skills.
Certainly, there are countless occupations which require specific education and training. Becoming a doctor, a lawyer, a dentist, a nurse or a pharmacologist—there are tons of jobs that mandate educations as a prerequisite. While this remains true, it is not always about the degree, it is about the experience. Gaining experience has proven to heighten the success of BCIT students who are crushing the job market with their industry-specific diplomas, internships and hands-on skills. Education has reached a level of specialty which demonstrates that degrees are not always the most powerful and job promising scholastic tool.
The trend of seeking skills over credentials is being followed by companies like Penguin Random House, Ernst and Young and Pricewaterhouse Coopers. They fear that students are coming out of school with “no real skills”, as they crave raw talent and true potential in spite of a degree. This will create opportunities for skilled candidates regardless of their background.
Showing good time management, being personable, adjustable and digitally orientated are assets more valued than education. It has been said that degrees disconnect individuals with the work- force.
This would appear to be true as people who achieve a degree have a significantly lower unemployment rate than those who haven’t gone to school. According to the NY Times, since 2000, college graduates (on average) have an unemployment rate that is 5.5 percentage points lower than those who are not educated. According to the same survey, a large percentage of individuals underestimate the value of a college degree on unemployment rates.
What is the Value in Having a Degree?
Over a life time, college graduates tend to earn over half a million dollars more than non-graduates. Beverly Oliver from Deakin University believes in degrees because she feels, “credentials are things we all look for…We look for an experience or a degree.” According Tom Oliver, degrees mean so much more than just grades.
While having a degree is more valuable than not in terms of earnings and employ-ability, more companies are open to skills and experience without a formal education. Given initiative, work ethic, and other innate and non-academically developed skills, many individuals are also extremely successful in business and careers.
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