Career Advice

How an Online Degree Can Help Advance Your Career!

Is your lack of a college or graduate degree keeping you from advancing in your career? Many employers will only promote workers who have at least a bachelor's degree, while others won't even consider hiring someone who hasn't graduated from college or graduate school. If you are willing to go back to school, but your work or family responsibilities make it difficult to attend classes, you may want to consider earning an online degree.

Sometimes referred to as web-based or virtual education, online degree programs are a great alternative for people whose schedules can't accommodate attending classes in a traditional manner. It might also allow someone to attend a specific college because of its reputation even if the school isn't nearby.

While attending college virtually can be a great - and convenient - option for many, it is one about which there are many misconceptions. Some prospective students think employers don't regard online degrees well.

Truth is, employers care more about what potential employees bring to the table than how they acquired that knowledge.

So once you find a suitable program, you will have to submit an application. And once you do all your background research, you want to get into a program that is right for you. It should be one in which you can succeed academically and it must provide you with the education you want and need. That means you will learn what you need to in order to have a successful and fruitful career.

5 Ways to Pick the Right College Major

Wait! Students should give themselves ample time to try a diverse set of classes in their first year or two of school before deciding what field of study most appeals to them

Just don't wait too long: While college officials tend to agree that students should wait before they make a decision that has the potential to affect the rest of their scholastic and professional lives, they shouldn't wait too long... Follow your heart, but remember to keep your eye on the prize!

Curiosity killed what cat?: Ask Questions! Speak with officials in the career services offices and the departments themselves to learn as much as you can about each major before you commit.

Make sure it's your passion: After students have had time as high school seniors and college underclassmen to explore various fields of study, it's likely that they've found one that greatly appeals to them. Follow that path, experts say, even if you're unsure about where it might lead, and what starting salary it might yield. Those factors won't matter in the long run.

Go For it! Don't let major name titles and descriptions hold you back - if you think you may be interested in a particular area of study, go for it! Remember that knowledge can never expire or go bad (and you can always change majors if need be!)

College Career Advice

College is really only about one thing: Learning how to become a critical thinker -- someone who knows that truth is a moving target and who is willing to ask the many questions necessary to move continuously closer to that target. As you take your classes, participate in campus activities and interact with diverse groups of people, critical thinking should become As you take your classes, engage in school work and interact with diverse groups of people, critical thinking should become part of your entire existence.

Your People Sources
Has a friend, parent or teacher ever told you not to major in a subject, because you'll never get a good job in that field? If so, you're far from alone. It's easy to listen to these well-meaning but often misinformed people. They're close to you, they seem to know what they're talking about, and they're usually quite vocal. How can they be wrong?

Ask yourself if these people really know any more about a certain major or career field than you do. On a scale of one to 10, with 10 being excellent, how does each people source rate when it comes to actual expertise in a particular major or career? Anyone who isn't at least an eight probably doesn't know what he's talking about.

Career-Related Tests and Computer Programs
Any career test or inventory you take - whether pencil-and-paper, computerized or on the Web - is only one indicator of jobs you might want to explore or avoid. It's not gospel truth and is certainly open to questioning.

Trends and Study Results
College is helping you become a critical thinker. Be sure you apply those critical-thinking skills to your major and career decision-making activities so you explore all your options, understand the limitations and nuances of the information you gather and make informed choices that will lead to satisfying outcomes.

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