Are Liberal Arts Degrees Worth Anything?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by beatsme, Dec 5, 2006.

  1. beatsme macrumors 65816

    beatsme

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  2. SiliconAddict macrumors 603

    SiliconAddict

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  3. Jschultz macrumors 6502a

    Jschultz

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    #3
    Hmm. I've got a little time left on my English degree (education certificate). I'm not too worried, as I expected to only pull in about 32K/yr. I've just recently started to understand the infatuation with money and possesions. So what if I can't buy that new benz and McMansion? The dream of my life is to have a job I love, a roof over my head, and a family to love. 32K a year means I can't spend crazy amounts on anything I choose. Here in Chicago, a household income of 75K isn't too bad. Certainly can become comfortable on that, given patience and intelligence with your money.
     
  4. beatsme thread starter macrumors 65816

    beatsme

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    #4
    yeah...money isn't everything. There's things I'd obviously like to have, but in my experience more possessions ? happiness.

    though I would like more memory. I'm limping along at 512MB...

    ...I remember when the 4400 I used at work got finally got 128MB of memory, and then I could have two applications open at the same time. Ah, the 20th century...
     
  5. Sdashiki macrumors 68040

    Sdashiki

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    #5
    A college degree is better than NO college degree.

    What you CAN do with it is up to you, not so much the real world.
     
  6. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #6
    Not always, I know a lot of people that are successful without finishing college. While it can't hurt the degree doesn't mean success, and also might leave you in more debt paying off the education.
     
  7. it5five macrumors 65816

    it5five

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    #7
    I'd never want to change my major to anything technical or business. To me it's like selling away some sort of unique-ness that we all have in us.

    Since I dreamed of going to college, it was always liberal arts or fine arts that I planned on pursuing. Now that I'm actually doing it, I couldn't be happier with anything else. I don't care how much money I'm going to be making right out of college. It doesn't concern me in the least. I'll be happy knowing I didn't waste four years of my life on a lame business degree.
     
  8. YS2003 macrumors 68020

    YS2003

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    #8
    As the previous posters said it would be better than nothing. Even though some people say companies are interested in hiring Liberal Arts graduates because of their "well-rounded" educational background, I am not buying that argument. Reality is college is where students focus on particular areas of interest after going through general education through high school. If you look at the job posting and job requirements, you would notice no company specifically look for Liberal Arts graduates.
     
  9. YS2003 macrumors 68020

    YS2003

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    #9
    I agree, it's not always. But, if you have a college/university degree, you have a better odd making it in the business/corporate world. The starting salary for non-college degree people is less than the ones with college degree. Typically, if you start at higher salary, your odds of ending up with higher salary/wage is in your favor. If you start low, you have to work a lot harder to make up for the initial loss (mostly, the lag will stay).
     
  10. it5five macrumors 65816

    it5five

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    #10
    I don't know if I'm the alone, but I have no interest in working in the business/corporate world. That's why I'm getting a Liberal Arts degree, and I have a feeling that may be why other Liberal Arts students are getting non business/technical degrees.
     
  11. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #11
    I don't think anyone is speaking in absolutes here, but statistically speaking not having a college degree hinders people in the work place. For every Bill Gates or Dave Thomas there are probably a few thousand people who will be stuck in dead-end jobs at Wal-Mart.


    Lethal
     
  12. Stridder44 macrumors 68040

    Stridder44

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    #12

    If only that were completely true. So far in my experience it's the same thing all over again. G.E.'s in college make me want to stab myself.
     
  13. aspro macrumors 6502

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    #13
    Well University isn't just a career-making institution. Some people might want to learn things, things that don't make much difference in the commercial world but are important on other levels? A more rounded course like Arts can help you become a better person.

    To each his own.
     
  14. devilot Moderator emeritus

    devilot

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    #14
    Thank you. I really truly agree w/ that statement. A college degree (bachelor's) and even a Master's does NOT guarantee making $x a year. I think a lot of my peers (who have recently graduated or will soon) are mistaken and assume that just because they have a degree and their parents make a ton of money, that they will too. And that's just not the case.

    Personal example, my cousin has a Master's degree, she and her husband (also w/ a Master's) couldn't afford living in L.A., CA anymore and moved out to Texas. When interviewing for a simple clerical job (like a receptionist/ secretary) just as a temporary job, my cousin said the interviewer was flabbergasted-- she was the tenth person they'd interviewed that day w/ a Master's degree... trying to get a $10/hour job!

    College degree does NOT guarantee financial success.
     
  15. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #15
    No, but a college degree in the right area can sure help! :)
     
  16. kentrox99 macrumors member

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    #16
    I think everbody it hitting close to the real point.
    We all know people that have tons of education and can't get a decent job.
    We also know people that have little post-high school education and do very well in life. So I think the question is not about the degree, but about the drive and determination of the person. Are you able to sell yourself? Any degree is only worth as much as you are willing to put into it. In my opinion, the people that say there aren't any well paying jobs out there are not trying hard enough. Don't let the degree dictate how successful you are. Make it happen yourself.
     
  17. MongoTheGeek macrumors 68040

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    #17
    In a statistics book I had once there was a case study on the dangers of using average wages. They had actual numbers that showed as the level of education in economics increased, mean salary decreased. The average economist with a PhD was making less than one with a Masters who was making less than one with a Bachelors. The reason was that people with Bachelors were more likely to be working on Wall street while PhD's would be teaching. In any given field the salaries increased with education but overall they went down.

    How much of the disparity between business and technical degrees and Liberal arts degrees is the field that people go into? What percentage of English majors teach K-12?
     
  18. princealfie macrumors 68030

    princealfie

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    #18
    Bill Gates didn't need a degree and look where he is at! :eek:
     
  19. Quboid macrumors 6502

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    #19
    You should read the bill gates story and see how much luck and tweaking he needed. Statistically speaking the odds are seriously against any aspiring bill gates in this generation.
     
  20. Jschultz macrumors 6502a

    Jschultz

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    #20
    I thought most English majors taught in school/college? It's pretty hard to get a job using it to do anything else, isn't it?
     
  21. floriflee macrumors 68030

    floriflee

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    #21
    That's what I've heard. If you don't teach then it seems like most go into something like technical writing.
     
  22. MongoTheGeek macrumors 68040

    MongoTheGeek

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    #22
    Journalism, some times though there are specific degrees for that. Some of them go into management, become non-technincal managers
     
  23. me_94501 macrumors 65816

    me_94501

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    #23
    That's the misconception of the century, and English majors like myself (just finished!) get it a lot. Well, maybe not the misconception of the century, but still. :p

    An English major helps teach communication and critical thinking skills, which can be applied to many careers.

    This page will give you an idea of where an English major is relevant:
    http://careerservices.rutgers.edu/Menglish.html
     
  24. YS2003 macrumors 68020

    YS2003

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    #24
    I have an AAS (Associate in Applied Science) in Journalism before I switched to Communication & Marketing in BA. The reason I did not pursue in that field is my native tongue is not English and the base salary in that field is not as good as other fields. I am still intrigued with Journalism and I think my success in the sales and marketing is partially attributable to my academic background in Journalism. I am surprised to see how many people at my company cannot write decent reports/messages. Poor communication skills will hold you back in your career.
     
  25. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #25
    true but thats like saying every nba star who decides to go pro out of high school will be the next kobe or lebron. there are alot more failures than successes if you don't go to college as pretty much most jobs(white collar i should add) won't look at you unless you have a 4 year degree

    unless you have some awesome idea such as Jobs or Gates (these guys were smart to begin with and didnt do nothing in their spare time like alot of the people I know who dropped out of highschool or didn't go to college), you should make the investment of getting an education for yourself
     

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