Earning a bachelor’s degree can be a big step in improving a student’s job prospects and working toward a new career. For many undergraduates, they may earn a bachelor’s degree in order to pursue a career that challenges them. As a result, they struggle to decide their major. A 2015 Accenture report suggested that college graduates are looking at the job market first before deciding on their major. Once a major is chosen, however, many believe that their career path is set in stone. What if they want to change their minds or pursue a different career later in life?
The good news is that a major does not always determine a student’s career. Employers are much more interested in the story a graduate tells with his or her previous work experience and the attitude an individual brings into the office every day, noted career coach Ashley Stahl for Forbes. While a major helps cultivate concrete skills, it does not define students embarking on their careers. A 2013 analysis from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York showed that less than 30 percent of college graduates have a career that matches their major. Students who can think critically and analytically can transition into roles outside of their field of study. Working toward a bachelor’s degree that exposes students to multiple areas of study prepares them for a range of different careers. Want to see where an online bachelor’s degree can take graduates? See the list below for the different paths graduates in some of the many online bachelor’s degree programs from the University at Alabama at Birmingham can take:
Bachelor of Science in Marketing
Graduates interested in marketing are typically curious about how consumers interact with brands. Earning a Marketing degree online can give students the chance to study how companies are changing their tactics in today’s ever evolving technological world. Smart phones and social media networks are changing how marketers interact with customers, as they are relying more on mobile platforms and are turning to Facebook and Twitter to talk about their favorite products.
Marketing graduates can become social media marketers and utilize existing platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Snapchat to get their message across to customers. As the platforms change and expand, social media managers will have to embrace those new opportunities. The Bureau of Labor Statistics groups social media marketers with other forms of public relations, and estimates that the number of jobs will grow by 6 percent from 2014-2024.
Social media marketers rely on market research to effectively reach their target audiences. Graduates from an online Marketing program can also bring their expertise into data analysis, using either qualitative or quantitative information to assist businesses in understanding their ideal customers and bringing different products to market. As more businesses begin relying on big data, they will need analysts to help parse out relevant insights. This area of the job market is expected to grow considerably by 19 percent from 2014 to 2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Marketers could also have the opportunity to embrace their creative side: Graduates may love the challenge of developing print and digital campaigns for advertising agencies or studying analytics to create a stronger e-commerce experience. For marketing students that love the energy that comes from interacting with others, they can build a career in public relations or sales. Learn more about the Bachelor of Science in Marketing and how it can prepare students for multiple careers.
Bachelor of Science in Accounting
Students who love a balanced checkbook and enjoy working in the details of a financial statement may enjoy pursuing a B.S. in Accounting degree. For many graduates, earning a business degree in accounting is the first step to becoming a licensed CPA. As an accountant, graduates verify financial statements and check for accuracy, an important role when working with business owners and individuals as they prepare their taxes. The BLS estimated that the job outlook for accountants is growing at 11 percent from 2014 to 2024.
There are a number of additional career paths available to students studying accounting. Graduates from an online Accounting program can embrace their analytical side with a career in financial management. In this role, they could be responsible for developing strategies to help reach long-term goals for a company. In addition, they could manage teams that decide on wise investments to help their companies reach those goals. Finance Managers can make $90,000 per year and have the opportunity to earn a commission, according to Payscale.com.
Students with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting who enjoy learning about the stock market may enjoy becoming financial analysts. By assessing trends in the marketplace, financial analysts can recommend different investments to their clients. They could also have the additional responsibility of managing these portfolios for their clients. There will likely be plenty of opportunities for individuals interested in this field as the BLS estimated the number of jobs will grow by 12 percent from 2014 through 2024.
Bachelor of Science in Management
The business world is interested in identifying and developing strong managerial skills. There is good reason for this: Strong managers are essential to any organization as they are responsible for setting goals for their team and can develop the people around them. Managers have a big picture view of their department and therefore set the tone for what their group can accomplish. As a result, students with an online Management degree must also be interested in understanding how people communicate and interact in the workplace. There are a number of careers that individuals graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Management can pursue.
With a degree in Management, graduates could be well suited to work as human resource managers. In this role, graduates can help recruit top talent for a company by overseeing the interviewing and onboarding of new hires. In addition, Human Resource Managers serve as the intermediary between employees and management, a task which requires effective communication skills. According to Payscale.com, the average salary for a HR manager is $63,244.
Graduates with an online Management degree who would prefer to focus more on project management may enjoy working as an operations manager. These leaders understand the inner workings of a company’s production line. In addition to supervising hiring, they must also oversee budgeting for each project as well as the completed production of different goods. U.S. News and World Report rates operations managers as one of the top 10 Best Business Jobs and #19 in Best Paying Jobs. On average, according to the site, operations managers make $97,000.
Graduates can also explore a career in management consulting. This is an ideal job for individuals that enjoy tackling business challenges on a daily basis. As a consultant, individuals must analyze a company’s current structure to solve a problem. For some companies, it is their cumbersome management structure. For others, it is solving a complex operational problem. Management Consultants offer an outside perspective on how companies can maximize efficiency to keep up with the demands of their industry. Payscale noted that the average salary of a management consultant is $86,000.
Here are additional ways your bachelor’s degree can prepare you for a new career
Another important element when earning a bachelor’s degree – regardless of what subject students may study – is the connections students make over the course of the semester. Professors are typically thought leaders in their field and are a wealth of information. In addition, fellow students are also strong resources. They may have helpful tips to ease your stress and may be able to introduce individuals to a job or company that they will love post-graduation.
There are additional benefits to working while earning a Bachelor of Science from one of the seven programs available from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Work experience shows employers that graduates can implement lessons from course work in the real world. A major can be just as important as what graduates choose to do with it: Utilizing critical thinking skills to solve business problems, whether they are in accounting, marketing or human resources will speak volumes.
A bachelor’s degree is made up of many components: A major, classes and the individuals within a network. Earning an online bachelor’s degree with the University of Alabama at Birmingham will prepare you for a range of careers. To learn more, reach out to an academic advisor today.