Workplace What kind of degree did you earn in order to get the job you have?

jackie100

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Jan 17, 2007
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1. What kind of degree/schooling did you earn in order to get the job you have and what kind of job/position are you in currently?

2. Was the schooling very hard/difficult for you? And do you enjoy your job?

Not trying to be nosey :smile: I'm actually considering going back to school but I have no idea what I want to study. I know anything in the medical field such as nursing or being a physician's assistant is currently in demand but I'm terrible at science and nursing requires a lot of chemistry which I detest. I am also terrible at mathematics. That rules out a lot of high paying jobs. Plus I really don't want a degree in English or History. I am getting old and I need something that will give me some earning power.

That's why I'm curious to know what kind of work some of you do, what type of schooling you had (and if it was extremely difficult) and if you enjoy your current job! Thanks!
 

monkeypie

Member
Nov 2, 2009
11
0
Law. Did economics for bachelors before, then I did a LL.B. You don't have to do law post-grad here.

Schooling was both easy and hard. The theory itself is quite difficult, but you really just have to study for what the exams will be. What you learn and what you really do in practice are pretty unrelated.

That said, I can't imagine why anyone would choose this field of work. It is said that lawyers have the highest rate of drug abuse, alcoholism, and mental illness. I say it is because of those things they do law in the first place.
 

twiggers

O.G.
May 7, 2006
33,070
29
My advice: Do what YOU love. Don't do ANYTHING for the money. You'll be miserable. I have friends who are lawyers and doctors and are miserable because it wasn't what they loved!

I am currently a postdoctoral researcher in the area of psychology (basically like a residency). I had to do a bachelors degree in psychology (4 years), plus another 4 years of postgraduate work to get my masters and PhD (typically takes people 5-6 years). Now I'm doing my post-doc which is a 2 year program.

No guarantee that I'll get a job after these two years....might take another year post-doc.

When I do get a job it'll be as a professor in a university where I'll teach and do research (I study early identification of autism....I love it).

Pay sucks.....but I honestly love my job. I never look at the clock and actually enjoy getting up in the morning. I work in the evenings and the weekends....and my vacations usually involve work.

Getting a PhD was tough though....definitely not for everyone!
 

ami kio

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May 28, 2006
4,209
0
Down South
My advice: Do what YOU love. Don't do ANYTHING for the money. You'll be miserable. I have friends who are lawyers and doctors and are miserable because it wasn't what they loved!
My advice: do what you don't hate. :P I'm extremely pragmatic, and I don't do what I love because it would not support the lifestyle that I want to lead. Do I love my job? No, but I don't hate it either. Some people are appalled at this, but I'm actually very happy. I don't live to work -- I work to live, and it's working out quite nicely so far.

Admittedly, I think that I have a weird combination of personality traits that make this all work out. I know other people who are doing something that they don't hate but aren't happy either.

FWIW, I got a 4 year engineering undergraduate degree and have been an engineer ever since. I have a slight natural gift for math that made undergrad survivable, but I have to say that I'm not a naturally great engineer -- just a good persistent one. ;)
 

ILuvShopping

★☆★★☆★★☆★
Jun 4, 2007
23,822
3
Iowa
my degree was for graphic design. for me college was pretty easy, mainly art classes, hardly any home work, very little tests (except for core classes and art history classes). most of our course work was done in class which allowed me to work a lot at a part time job. i couldn't imagine myself going to college for anything except graphic designer.

right now i am essentially a graphic designer but i work in a small company so i have a lot of other random office jobs as well. right now i'm looking to get a job where i'm just strictly a graphic designer.
 
Aug 29, 2008
4,639
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1. What kind of degree/schooling did you earn in order to get the job you have and what kind of job/position are you in currently?

2. Was the schooling very hard/difficult for you? And do you enjoy your job?
1. I have a sort of broad-based BS from a well-regarded school. The brand has been more useful to me than anything else. My job is in not terribly involved engineering research.

2. School was difficult for me in terms of workload, time management, personal growth, etc., but it was not difficult in the sense of any class being just beyond comprehension.

If you have an interest in something like nursing, I think you shouldn't be deterred by the coursework you need to complete it. You may need to go one step back and take a more fundamental course, or you may need to devote extra time, but ultimately you will not be using your math and chem prereqs in your everyday job.
 

lorihmatthews

A taste for the arts
O.G.
Oct 7, 2006
31,765
6,812
San Francisco
I have 2 bachelors degrees from a large university -- Advertising and Psychology. The advertising degree was planned and I earned the psychology degree by accident -- I took so many psychology electives that when I sat down with a school counselor she said that I only needed a few more classes for that extra degree, so I went for it.

I'd say school generally wasn't too difficult for me, although there were some classes that were really rough. I had trouble with statistics and accounting, but I'm not really a numbers person. I cruised through other classes like marketing, economics and all my advertising and psychology classes. I also did well in history and humanities.

I did spend a lot of time studying, though. I remember when I was a senior I'd study from 6-10 pm during the week (and then go out afterward) and about 8 hours on Saturdays and Sundays. I definitely wasn't one of those people who could just attend class and not study for exams. However, I could write any paper with one draft, hand it in and get an A.

I've worked in advertising agencies for most of my career, and I've also done marketing project management jobs for large companies (which is what I'm doing now).

I think with any degree, you're going to have classes that you love and classes that you hate. But I wouldn't necessarily rule out a career that you really want just because you think a class will be hard for you. However ... I agree with other posts that you shouldn't do something just because you think it will bring in money. You need to go into something that will sustain you long-term.

If I were you, I'd visit a university campus and speak with a counselor to help determine what your best career path might be.
 

DiorDeVille

Member
Apr 27, 2006
6,871
3
U.S.
My advice: do what you don't hate. I'm extremely pragmatic, and I don't do what I love because it would not support the lifestyle that I want to lead. Do I love my job? No, but I don't hate it either. Some people are appalled at this, but I'm actually very happy. I don't live to work -- I work to live, and it's working out quite nicely so far.
I love this advice and think its both refreshing and realistic!!!

1. I'm a lawyer, did journalism first and then law. Loved the work as a journalist, but hated the pay, the hours, and the relocation demands. As a lawyer, the pay isn't bad, but the hours, the toll on my personal life and health (sitting in a chair for 14-hour days), and the environments are difficult. There are other ways to make the same salary for fewer hours (that involve a little more risk - or did before the economic woes of late).

It seems you either love the law or you don't. Most people who are somewhat social seem to hate it (me). It's a lot of minutia that changes nothing of any importance, but can be career-ending if missed. The hours are long, and the coworkers are equally miserable.

2. Journalism was a blast, fun, easy major, dynamic and slightly eccentric classmates. Loved it. Law school wasn't bad, study-wise. But it still was awful. I read a saying somewhere that went: "Law school is the opposite of sex. Even when its good, it's still bad." I can't say it better than that. Some of my classmates loved it, but I just felt like my entire life was put on hold for 3 years. Overrated.
 
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jackie100

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Jan 17, 2007
1,129
5
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Things that I enjoy;

fashion, beauty (I don't want to be a makeup artist though).

broadcasting. I don't know if I'm too old though. I'm 31 :sad: I think I look younger for my age though. I don't know if this is a realistic goal or not. I don't want kids or a family so I would be ok with being uprooted and having to work in a smaller market first, which I read is necessary in this line of work.

I would not enjoy being a nurse honestly. I think I had it in mind because of salary and job stability.

Does anyone know anything about visual merchandising? What kind of degree is required for that? On The Real Housewives of NY there is a woman who does visual merchandising for Victoria's Secret. Seems like the pay is good in that field but how does one get started?
 

spiffdeb

O.G.
Mar 11, 2007
342
0
NJ
My degree was in music but work in the technology field where I started out as a computer programmer.......
 
Oct 30, 2006
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If you have an interest in something like nursing, I think you shouldn't be deterred by the coursework you need to complete it. You may need to go one step back and take a more fundamental course, or you may need to devote extra time, but ultimately you will not be using your math and chem prereqs in your everyday job.
I agree with this. For years, I thought I wasn't good at math. I was in college and almost flunked out after 2 years. My mom had 2 nervous breakdowns (bipolar incidents) and I had to get her admitted to the psych hosp (she didn't want to go). It was a really, really bad time in my life. So I left school and came back two years later. I had to take calculus to graduate. I went to the math tutor room every single day and worked. And I did it! I got a bad start in high school in Algebra with a lousy teacher. Once that foundation is blown, it is hard to get the confidence. But if you actually apply yourself and don't tell yourself you suck at it, you can do it. Honestly, I graduated with a degree in business. If I had it to do over again, I would do something in the medical field. I love diagnosing people and I am pretty good at it. I might be a GP or something. But I blew it and now it is too late.
 

spiffdeb

O.G.
Mar 11, 2007
342
0
NJ
You really can do anything you set your mind to, but it is important to pursue a career that holds interest for you. I was terrible at math in school but went on to have a very technical, math oriented job and I love it. I never had a teacher show how math is applied and give me confidence that I really could do it. I had to learn that for myself later on.


While you can probably get by for awhile with something you aren't crazy about, as the years go on it will become more difficult to be interested and engaged in it.
 

jackie100

O.G.
Jan 17, 2007
1,129
5
43
I agree with this. For years, I thought I wasn't good at math. I was in college and almost flunked out after 2 years. My mom had 2 nervous breakdowns (bipolar incidents) and I had to get her admitted to the psych hosp (she didn't want to go). It was a really, really bad time in my life. So I left school and came back two years later. I had to take calculus to graduate. I went to the math tutor room every single day and worked. And I did it! I got a bad start in high school in Algebra with a lousy teacher. Once that foundation is blown, it is hard to get the confidence. But if you actually apply yourself and don't tell yourself you suck at it, you can do it. Honestly, I graduated with a degree in business. If I had it to do over again, I would do something in the medical field. I love diagnosing people and I am pretty good at it. I might be a GP or something. But I blew it and now it is too late.
Yea, I think I had a bad foundation in high school and didn't apply myself. I'm much older now so it's not like I remember anything from back then anyways.

I don't think I would like nursing at all to be honest. I was considering it because the salary is decent and it seems like a stable job which is important.

The LAST thing I want to do is get a degree and then not be able to find a job in my line of study due to saturation or whatever. That would be terrible.
 

kathyrose

The Bargain Hunter
O.G.
Dec 12, 2005
17,578
37
Norman, OK
www.flickr.com
I have 3 BAs: Accounting, Computer & Information Management, and Marketing

Current Position: Business Analyst in an Energy Software Company

Um, I met my current boss on a plane. I have zero background in Energy but he took a chance on me. Gave me his card after talking to me on the whole plane ride and then interviewed me. Got an offer and moved 3 weeks later. Love what I do everyday that I even continue working at home sometimes when I have nothing else to do.

Do what you love when possible.