Going to college might seem like the best option after you have graduated from high school; however, this depends a lot on what kind of career you see yourself in for the future. Not all career paths require a specific degree, and some might not require one at all, saving yourself money and time to focus on developing your career. Some people might choose to go to college for the experience of living away from family and sharing experiences with new people, however, this might not always be the sensible option. Here is a breakdown of industries that you will need a degree for and those that you do not.
Being an engineer can be an exciting role and one that is in high demand and will continue to be in the future. Every time we turn on a light or step into an elevator, we are doing so because engineering allowed those things to be made possible. It is an industry that requires highly skilled people and therefore, you will need an industry-specific degree if you are looking to enter this career path. Some companies might accept graduates with closely related degrees, for example in math, physics, or materials science, although this would be quite rare as the first-choice candidates would have specific engineering degrees. Once you have decided that engineering is for you, you can expect a high salary and a wealth of variety, such as industrial, civil, mechanical, biomedical and many more, although it is best to choose your speciality early on to understand where to focus your studies.
Medicine, Nursing, Dentistry and Related Fields
If you are looking for a career in one of these industries then you would be looking for an industry-specific college course, such as nursing to become a nurse and medicine to become a doctor. Nursing is a particularly in-demand career since the baby boomer generation is moving into retirement and needing more care, with the projected demand growing by 12% to 2028. Study at Baylor University to enroll in their online accelerated BSN nursing programs and enjoy hybrid interactive learning courses, clinical and lab experiences, and online courses to emerge as a skilled nurse. It might be a lot of work to enter one of the healthcare fields, however, the hard work will always pay off since you can expect a high salary, high graduate employment rate and a steady job for life, opportunities for travel and helping people all over the world, and the list goes on. Not only will you be entering a great career for yourself, but you will also be helping others and understand the feeling of creating a real, positive impact.
Hospitality and Retail Management
Working in hospitality and retail can be an extremely exciting career path since you can look forward to meeting and talking with new people every day, working from anywhere you like (as long as you can speak the language) and enjoying variety, where two days will never be the same. This is a great option for people who prefer to be on their feet and active during their working day since unless you reach the general management level, there will be little opportunity for sitting at a desk the whole day. Better still, these career paths don’t usually require an industry-specific degree, so you are able to enter them no matter what you have previously studied for, although it would be helpful if your degree was in a similar field, for example, travel and tourism or event management. You can expect low to medium salaries and variable shift patterns at entry-level positions, but as you continue to work your way up to the management level, salaries can be medium to high, depending on the establishment and working hours can be made more sociable.
Marketing and Advertising
Marketing and advertising are growing industries, with digital marketing becoming one of the most in-demand job roles at the moment, thanks to our growing reliability and usage of technology and online media. It would be useful to have a degree in either marketing or advertising to enter these industries, however, it is not always necessary since being a great communicator and having a creative mind are both attributes that are more important to the role than a degree. You will also be required to think outside the box and come up with new, exciting ideas to help companies’ marketing or advertising campaigns stand out against the competition and increase sales. Being highly competent with using and engaging on social media can also help your resume to stand out since this is the medium that most contemporary companies will use to advertise the most.
Being a make-up artist is a responsible role that requires you to ensure performers have the most suitable make-up for their character. You might be expected to create different looks by changing performers’ hair, make-up and sometimes applying prosthetics. For this, you are required to be highly creative and have impeccable practical skills and technique to be successful, although a college degree is not required and instead, make-up artists might complete traineeships and freelance work within the industry to gain experience. As a trainee, you can expect to earn a relatively low income, although as you gain experience and establish your brand if you are freelance, you can actually earn more than the actors that you are working with.
As a journalist, you are expected to have a strong writing portfolio and some strong connections in the industry, however, a degree is not always necessary. Nevertheless, studying for a degree in journalism can make finding a job easier and can be very useful in actually performing well as a journalist. The best option if you are looking to become a journalist is to study a journalism degree and double major in another topic that can become your area of expertise. This gives you a niche to set you apart from the rest of the crowd, making it easier for you to approach industry-specific publications, such as travel writing magazines and online newspapers.
Now that you have read the above careers and how to enter them, you might be thinking about whether going to college is the right decision for you or not. College is necessary for many careers and going down this path can result in you having a very successful future. However, don’t forget that you can also be very successful in other industries that might prefer experience over academic education.
With so many potential careers needing certain degrees as a minimum entry requirement, it’s important to consider what type of career you want to get into early so that you can make the preparations for your study. This list isn’t exhaustive, but it’s clear to see that if a career requires a specialist skill or piece of knowledge, then a degree to teach that will be necessary.