Saturday, March 19, 2011

Pros And Cons Of Getting A Second Degree

College is all about decisions. Deciding on which college to attend, which major to choose, which classes to take, to live on campus or an apartment or commute, and which activities to invest your time into. After graduation, it is no different. One of the biggest decisions is whether or not to continue your education in grad school or to begin the job hunt. While I chose the job hunt, many students now choose to keep attending school because of the economy. Here are the pros and cons of choosing grad school over the job hunt.

Pros of grad school:

1. You'll have more education under your belt and another degree. More and more these days, employers are looking for more education and experience. You'll learn so much more about your chosen career and get a leg up on those who just got their Bachelors. Getting your masters or even PhD can give you an edge or make you a more attractive applicant.

2. You can prolong the job hunt for now. Finding a job in this economy is scary. Some students think it is safer to continue their education and to get another degree. Then keep their fingers crossed it will give them that extra time and push to find a job when they graduate again.

3. You can set your own schedule. Unlike the real world and the dreaded 9-5 job, you can set your classes to when you work best. Early bird? Have all your classes in the AM and have the afternoon off. Like to sleep in? Schedule all your classes for the afternoon or night and sleep in until noon.

4. Having second thoughts about the degree you chose to pursue when you were 18? Grad school gives you a great opportunity to dig into something new and get an entirely different degree. This will also show you have many interests and can excel in many different topics.

Cons of grad school:

1. The money aspect. I don't have the income to pay for more schooling and I wasn't ready to go into debt with loans to continue my education. You have to decide if you need the extra degree or if it is something that can wait until you save money.

2. Let's face it: school is hard and time-consuming. Graduation is a really exciting time when all your hard work pays off! Grad school might seem like that last thing you want to do. Some people feel ready to begin the job search and not go through any more years of school!

3. Going back to school could strain many relationships in your life. Grad school is even harder and more stressful. The money aspect alone is enough to start a fight with parents or a spouse. Make sure you have supportive loved ones before you dive in to more schooling.

4. Grad school can be highly competitive. You have to really work hard and want your spot. You need to be confident of your choice given the competitiveness of grad school.

So whether you decide to find a job with your newly acquired degree or continue your education, remember to do what is right for YOU. Both decisions require hard work and dedication towards your long-term goal of finding a job you love, so whichever you chose, keep that enthusiastic attitude.

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