With a turbulent job market, many professionals are choosing to go back to school to pursue an advanced degree that will give them a competitive advantage, help grow their careers and improve their salaries. Entering any graduate program is an important decision that will likely impact your life for years to come. If you are considering earning your graduate degree, it is important to carefully evaluate the pros and the cons for your specific circumstances. Think about your future career objectives and prospects, your ability to pay tuition/fees, your available financial and emotional support systems and your discipline in terms of succeeding at the graduate level.
There are many reasons – both financial and non – that can help make a master’s degree a worthwhile investment. Here are some to consider.
A Master’s Degree Can Help You Get Ahead
Many entry-level jobs now require a master’s degree, and almost all senior leadership, management, and executive positions do as well. A master’s degree that is paired with relevant work experience will demonstrate your ability to apply the theoretical knowledge you learned in the classroom to real-world situations. Studying part-time while you continue to work can give you a significant advantage while you learn and gain experience concurrently.
A Master’s Degree May Increase Your Options and Professional Prospects
While many people go to graduate school to advance their current careers, a master’s degree can also give you the flexibility to pivot your career into another sector, industry, or profession altogether. The skills and in-depth knowledge you gain can be applied to your existing area of specialty, or provide you with a foundation in a completely new area and open up opportunities that may not have otherwise been available to you. Being in graduate school will expose you to a wider network of professionals from a range of fields who can assist you in your future career exploration.
Graduate School is an Opportunity for Intellectual Growth
By the time you reach graduate school, it’s likely that you love the subject you’re studying. As you consider the potential financial and career growth benefits, keep in mind the satisfaction that comes from intellectual growth – learning for learning’s sake. The intellectual stimulation, cognitive development, and experience of collaborating with thought leaders in your chosen field can provide immeasurable intangible benefits.
At the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Collat School of Business, we understand the needs of today’s top employers and how to prepare our students to meet these demands. Our online degrees – specifically, our Master of Accounting and Master of Science in Management Information Systems – are uniquely suited to help you advance your career. They are affordable, engaging, and academically rigorous – key qualities of a program designed to improve your professional value to employers and better position you to take advantage of future business opportunities. By choosing a concentration that best fits your career goals, you can maximize the return on your most valuable investment — yourself.