Monday, May 10, 2010

How Much Is That Degree In The Window?

In theory, a university or college degree is much more than just a credential for any particular field of employment. It should represent a well-rounded education, a person who can think, a scholar. In theory. But how well does that hold up in the real world?

According to that great philosopher Yogi Berra, “In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. But in practice, there is.” Sometimes a degree is just a ticket to punch on the way to a career.

Having said that, which are the worst-paying degrees?

No surprise, engineering degrees continue to be top earners--and (also no big shocker) you have to go pretty far down the list before you see the liberal arts well represented.

10. Drama
9. Fine Arts
8. Hospitality and tourism
7. Education
6. Horticulture
5. Spanish
4. Music
3. Theology
2. Elementary education
1. Social work

Definitely not a lot of scientists and engineers on that list.


Anonymous said...

Yep, I could make more money doing something else. So could you. But you don't. Me either. I like being a teacher. That means we have to live somewhat modestly.

I just wrote a guestbook comment for the obit for a good friend. A teacher. A good man who made a difference.

Life is short, do what gives your life meaning.


Ellen K said...

Once upon a time I wanted to be a great writer and artist. My mother told me to get a teaching certificate to fall back on. During various times of my life for around 20 years, I have taught human children art. Just today I learned that one of my students, now 27, is the featured illustrator on a novel being launched. Another students owns a cutting edge design firm in SoHo. Yet another is headed for sculpture stardom. I may never be wealthy, but I like to think I made the world a little better by passing along the idea that art is the part that makes us human. At this point, refer to the films "How Art Made the World."

Darren said...

Art is a great and wonderful thing that adds to the human experience.

But if you also want to support yourself as an adult in our society, *most* can't expect to get by working in "art". There aren't very many jobs where you "get to be artistically creative and make a lot of money".