More advice for Occupy Wallstreeters

Our recent editorial about Occupy Wallstreeters got a lot of feedback (http://machinedesign.com/article/advice-for-occupy-wall-streeters-1117). Since it appeared, I came upon another item about an Occupy Wallstreeter that appeared on the Chronicles of Higher Education Web site. It mentions one poor unemployed kid hanging out with the protestors who had accumulated $90,000 in educational loans pursuing a degree in film.

The situation highlights the importance of getting a marketable degree. If you want to know which degrees are most marketable, check out the study done by the Center on Education and the Workforce at Georgetown University. Researchers there parsed through data from the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey to figure out median salaries for various kinds of degree holders. Some highlights from their findings:

Counseling Psychology majors make median earnings of $29,000 per year; the median is $120,000 for Petroleum Engineering majors.

The highest median earnings are found in the Engineering major group ($75,000), while the lowest are the Education and Psychology and Social Work groups ($42,000).

Biology and Life Science majors make $35,000 more at the median with a graduate degree, while the difference in median earnings for people who stopped at a Bachelor's degree versus those who went on for a graduate degree with an undergraduate major in Arts is only $11,000.

You can find a summary of the report here: http://www9.georgetown.edu/grad/gppi/hpi/cew/pdfs/whatsitworth-select.pdf

The full report is here: http://www9.georgetown.edu/grad/gppi/hpi/cew/pdfs/whatsitworth-complete.pdf

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Lee Teschler

Leland serves as Editor-in-Chief of Machine Design. He has 34 years of Service and holds a B.S. Engineering from the University of Michigan, a B.S. Electrical Engineering from the University of...
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