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So who has a bachelor's degree?

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Old 06-23-2011, 01:21 PM   #1
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Default So who has a bachelor's degree?

I'm still working on mine, but I just like to ask others these questions!

What is your degree in? Why did you choose your particular major? Is your current job related to your degree? Do you wish you would have chosen a different major? If so, what would you have chosen? Do you feel that the fact that a person has a degree (proving that they can think and use their brain to some extent ) is more important than what they chose to major in?

I'm majoring in History right now, and while I don't feel like it's a mistake I'm wondering if there is a more practical application for it. I could always teach, that's a given, but I'm thinking maybe I'll switch my major to Library Science and minor in History, and look at becoming an academic librian.

I don't know! I'm just tired of people telling me I'm making a bad choice when I feel like it's a good one.
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Old 06-23-2011, 01:41 PM   #2
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My undergraduate degree is in English, and I minored in women's studies.

My graduate degree (master's) is in public policy and administration.

I work as a research study coordinator at a university. It has pretty much nothing to do with my UG degree- although I think it gave me a lot of good skills. I think there's a lot to be said for majoring in the humanities- it gives you a wide breadth of knowledge and skills that can benefit any job (spoken like a true liberal arts college alumna!)

I want to work as a grant writer for a nonprofit organization or for a foundation or local government. Haven't gotten there yet, though! I work for a doctor so hearing about her clinical activities kinda makes me wish I'd been more scientifically inclined... I am just interested in everything!

I'm also a strong believer that getting the degree is the most important part, not necessarily what you get it in, unless you have a very specific job target. So do what you enjoy and don't let people tell you otherwise!

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Old 06-23-2011, 01:47 PM   #3
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I have a BS in physics and I'm now working on a PhD in biomedical engineering. I chose my undergrad degree because I just loved the field and wasn't too concerned with how I would use it - though there is an advantage in the sciences that people will think you're smart for doing that as a major even though there may be little practical use for a BS in physics or biology or whatever. (You really have to go on to graduate study to enjoy career advancement if you stay in research.) Employability factored in a little bit for my choice of doctoral degree. I mean, I still was very interested in the field of study but it didn't hurt that it's projected to have the highest growth rate of any sector over the next 10 years.

I think if you want to pursue a liberal arts degree because that's what you're interested in that's fine, but to increase your chances of finding a job (you like) you should expend every effort in getting summer internships or semester externships or part-time work or volunteering or shadowing people or informational interviewing - and those things don't necessarily have to be in your major field. You can't start thinking about career choices, garnering work experience, or networking too early, in my opinion.
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Old 06-23-2011, 01:49 PM   #4
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Things are different here in Ireland but I have an honours Bachelors Degree in Engineering. If I was back again, I might do the same or else maybe go into sports, sports injury, physiotherapy. Had an injury and since then had more of an interest in this area. however really like my job and what career I am in. Do only what YOU want, the way I see it you have to work at it for 8 hours a day, I would rather do something I enjoy, and get paid peanuts, than something I hate and get paid great. Its not nice waking up every morning hating work and dreading the next day, and its for the future so do what you want, and let them others judge you if they want, at least you are happy, sometimes these people are just jealous because they are not happy in their job! Its similiar to weight loss in ways, others can be supportive or jealous, put you down etc, but do it for YOU and smile going to work every day.

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Old 06-23-2011, 01:50 PM   #5
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What is your degree in?

graphic design with a minor on photo

Why did you choose your particular major?

Because I like it.

Is your current job related to your degree?


Nope. SAHM.

Do you wish you would have chosen a different major?


Nope. Though maybe wish a different school.

Do you feel that the fact that a person has a degree (proving that they can think and use their brain to some extent ) is more important than what they chose to major in?


I don't even think the degree matters much less what it is in. I know lots of people without who can use their brain and lots of people with who seem useless!

I also know some who have too many degrees (ex: masters and phd) and it holds them back in getting a job if they list it in their resume because then they are perceived as overeducated.

But then I also know others who have degrees that served them well, and others still who just take it like a learning journey and don't really worry about it.

It's a mixed bag for sure.

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Old 06-23-2011, 01:59 PM   #6
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BS in Biology because I found it fascinating. Still do, though most of my adult career has been in the computer field. Which interestingly enough, I've never even had a class in. So obviously for me having the degree was more important than what it was in. However I do wonder if in this economy this is still the case. It seems like there are so many applicants for any given job that the folks (or computers) doing the screening are going to look for education matches to job descriptions.
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Old 06-23-2011, 01:59 PM   #7
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Such good answers! Good advice, too.

I should have been more careful about the degree = using your brain part. That is a pretty harsh generalization, and I apologize. I hope you all can see what I'm trying to say even though it was poorly expressed.

It's nice to hear from people who went down the liberal arts path as well! I'm definitely feeling more encouraged.
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Old 06-23-2011, 02:10 PM   #8
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BS = Computer Science (specialization in Artificial Intelligence)
MS = Information Systems/Information Security

Do I use my degree? I certainly use the knowledge from my degree and knowledge gained on the job and what not based on what I was taught in college. I would say though that a BS if very breadth based so there is no real way to use all you learned in undergrad. Graduate school is more in depth so that is when you generally get to zero in on an area you like.

Having said that, I am now taking undergrad classes again to pursue an entirely different field.
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Old 06-23-2011, 02:10 PM   #9
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What is your degree in?

Human Development (Bachelor of Science)

Why did you choose your particular major?

I started as a Genetics major and really, really struggled with Organic Chemistry - this major incorporated Genetics, but with less hard science and more other subjects I enjoyed (Psych, Sociology, etc)

Is your current job related to your degree?

Nope. I design computer software for a medical laboratory software company.

Do you wish you would have chosen a different major?

Possibly. I'm very happy with where I am, but think I'd be equally happy if I'd toughed it out as a Genetics major.

Do you feel that the fact that a person has a degree (proving that they can think and use their brain to some extent ) is more important than what they chose to major in?


Yes. Most office-type jobs are looking for people to show that they can set a goal (a degree), work toward it, and achieve it, and that they have basic general knowledge (reading comprehension, writing skills). Any college degree will show that.
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Old 06-23-2011, 02:13 PM   #10
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I have taken several stabs at a variety of degrees. FINALLY got mine at 50!

What is your degree in?
Double major: professional writing and digital media communication

Why did you choose your particular major?
I've always loved to write, and will actually be pursuing an MFA in writing next. But the second degree was to become a web designer.

Is your current job related to your degree?

Yes, I'm now a web designer and content writer with my own business.

Do you wish you would have chosen a different major?

I've chosen many majors over the years...I love to learn. Kinda want to go back to study more literature, philosophy, anthropology, foreign languages, etc.

Do you feel that the fact that a person has a degree (proving that they can think and use their brain to some extent ) is more important than what they chose to major in?
A degree is something that will help someone get their first job. Many times, it doesn't matter what the major was, unless it's more about scientific or technical pursuits.

There's a lot to be said for actual work experience.
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Old 06-23-2011, 02:25 PM   #11
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I have a BS in Bioinformatics. I loved biology in high school and I loved my computer programming classes, and when I realized I could do BOTH in college and not even have to leave my hometown, I was sold. Sometimes I wish I had majored in physics or chemistry... I wouldn't have enjoyed it nearly as much, but the people I know who went that direction seem to have a different way of thinking about math/numbers that makes things easier for them.

I ended up doing a "5"-year BS/MS program (I spent 6 years on it ) because I thought I wanted to go straight into a job after that. I did my MS research in a biochemistry lab and realized a) I wanted a PhD and b) I didn't really want to sit in front of a computer anymore. So, now I'm working on a PhD in Biochemistry/Cell Biology. So I'm not directly applying my BS degree, since I don't do any computer stuff anymore, but it did give me the biology/chemistry background that I needed to get into grad school.

These days there's so much "inflation" when it comes to education that I don't really place much importance on a bachelor's degree. It's more impressive to me when a college student seeks out non-classwork opportunities to apply their skills, like relevant work experience or internships, starting their own business, writing a book, publishing papers, doing research, volunteering, tutoring, etc. I think you should get whatever degree will let you get the job that you think you want, don't be afraid to change your mind, and take advantage of everything your college has to offer.

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Old 06-23-2011, 02:32 PM   #12
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What is your degree in?
BS = Human Development and Family Relations
Masters: MBA

Why did you choose your particular major?
This is sort of a long story. I wanted to do psychology. My dad suggested Nursing (easier to get a job at the time). I couldn't handle the Chemistry. Then switched to HDFR.

Is your current job related to your degree?
I never did anything related to HDFR. But just having a degree helped me get the jobs I've had. I went bad to school to get m MBA b/c I felt that was little more related to what I was/am doing. I did a lot of AP/AR and am now doing accounting type work - more related to financial controls.

Do you wish you would have chosen a different major?
If so, what would you have chosen?

I think if I had a Bachelor's degree in accounting, I would be a lot further along in my career... but when I went to college, I was more interested in expanding my social circle than attending class. I think being an HDFR major and taking classes I was interested in was the only way I ended up making it through my Undergrad life.

Do you feel that the fact that a person has a degree is more important than what they chose to major in?
I totally agree with what mandalinn said. It's about showing you can make a commitment and see it through - not about the specific degree (unless you are going for something specific - like pharmacy, etc.)
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Old 06-23-2011, 02:32 PM   #13
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  • What is your degree in?
    I have a BA in Sociology. I'm working on my MA in Sociology as well.
  • Why did you choose your particular major?
    I had started and stopped school four or five times, and then I took my first soc. class and I really felt invested in the subject matter. It ended up being something that I really enjoyed (instead of just being something that I was good at)
  • Is your current job related to your degree?
    I'm in the SAHM/full time student category right now
  • Do you wish you would have chosen a different major?
    Nah
  • Do you feel that the fact that a person has a degree (proving that they can think and use their brain to some extent ) is more important than what they chose to major in?
    I think that part of the prestige from having a degree is just the idea that you were able to make it through the brain work, but at the same time, I don't think that all degrees were created (or gained) equal(ly)
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Old 06-23-2011, 02:34 PM   #14
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I work at a university, if you have a bachelor's degree it is a good deal no matter what you major in. It shows you have drive and determination and you know how to work and think. With that being said if there is a specific field you want to go into it would difinately help if you had a major in the field but if you are happy where you are at don't let other people tell you it is a bad choice. The choice is yours and you are the one who has to live with it. People seem to love telling others what to do!
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Old 06-23-2011, 02:34 PM   #15
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My BS is in Nursing, and I think that my BSN and RN might be the most valuable things I possess. I have a masters degree and practice as a midwife (haha, surprise!) but I know that whatever happens in the economy or health care or whatever, I have knowledge, skills, licensure, etc., so my kids will be fed and clothed and housed. So I do believe in practicality! However I also love love love being a midwife and I do believe in following one's interests.

I actually started out as a history major and I still love and enjoy history, but that is not how I pay the bills. As for my own kids, I want them to have a broad education and knowledgable about liberal arts, but I also want them to have a knowledge base or skillset for which other people will want to pay them.

So, from a practical viewpoint, major in history and minor in Spanish or computers or ????. Get some business or language or computer background. I wish I had more of a computer background.
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