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Employment and wage by college major and college type


flyingiguana
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This gives statistics for employment and wages by major and college type for all graduates in the state for each year:

https://apps.deed.state.mn.us/lmi/etd/default.aspx

 

It's kind of fascinating.

 

My daughter was able to look up several of her possible majors and discover that the arts majors, while they do find jobs, aren't making all that much and tend to be employed in things like "Accommodation and Food Services" (they're waiting tables?) and "Retail Sales" (Target?).

 

The STEM majors tend to be employed in areas where they're using their degree.  Least, that's the impression I get.

 

Computer science majors have higher salaries and are more likely to be employed than physical science majors, but I suspect this is skewed due to more of the physical science majors going on to grad school or med school.

 

Supposedly other states do this tracking too, but I haven't found them on the web.  California, Virginia,  Arkansas, Texas and Colorado are supposed to have this information.  Anyone know where it is?

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It's kind of fascinating.

 

My daughter was able to look up several of her possible majors and discover that the arts majors, while they do find jobs, aren't making all that much and tend to be employed in things like "Accommodation and Food Services" (they're waiting tables?) and "Retail Sales" (Target?).

 

The STEM majors tend to be employed in areas where they're using their degree.  Least, that's the impression I get.

 

Computer science majors have higher salaries and are more likely to be employed than physical science majors, but I suspect this is skewed due to more of the physical science majors going on to grad school or med school.

 

Data like this is interesting to see, esp so one knows the odds and what to expect, but one also needs to keep in mind that for many arts majors, it's a fallacy to think they would do better in a STEM field (and vice versa). 

 

Most kids are talented in a field or two and will have the best chance to do well at a job they enjoy somewhere in that field. 

 

There are some who could "make it" through engineering (or similar) without specific talent for it, but is it worth it to do something like that when one doesn't enjoy it?  Do we really want to encourage our kids to chase money when it's something they don't naturally enjoy?  I'd rather not.  I'd rather see my guys getting a smaller paycheck if it's a field they enjoy.  Besides, I know some who graduated with an engineering degree who still can't find jobs (or keep jobs) in that field DUE to not having the talent for it.  They also end up working elsewhere for much less.

 

But, one does have to realize the competition for some jobs can be fierce.  This is the future as well as the now IMO.  In the end, it's my belief that an "education" is never wasted, but do carefully weigh debt and potential for each college opportunity.  In some fields, a degree ought to be from a better college in that field even for higher cost (not necessarily better college in US News or various sports).  In some fields, it doesn't matter.  It's worth it to take time to research the outcomes of recent grads IMO.

 

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Yes, but when one has a kid who is equally talented in both arts and STEM, it gives them something to think about.

 

I think my 2nd had already decided that despite everyone telling her how talented she is in music, if she CAN major in something technical, that might be the better option.  Just her personal experience is telling her that. 

 

We know a lot of arts and humanities majors who have jobs, but they aren't in their field.  So one has to decide if waiting tables or being an educational assistant in an elementary school (which pays less than a teacher) or working in a grocery store is what one wants to do -- and if the arts or humanities major is worth it on its own, if you're not likely to get a job in that field.

 

My first daughter majored in physics.  She barely had to try to get a job.  She had several offers without even going through a big application process and applying to job after job.  All her STEM friends are similarly employed without much effort.

 

She is also getting job offers related to her theater minor (which was going to originally be a major, but it looked harder to complete than her physics major).  Some pay well, but they are only contract work for a few days to a week.  Others are more in the volunteer category.

 

My second daughter says to me -- so, again, tell me where all these STEM majors are that can't get jobs?

 

On the topic of "kids who can't do STEM majors":  Apparently my kids are going to turn out to be "kids who can't do arts majors".  The hoops one has to jump through to complete an art major seem worse to them than the hoops for a STEM major.  The arts majors may be "easier", but my kids see them as more pointless, so it's harder for them to do.

 

My oldest did just about everything for the theater major, but she couldn't handle taking the few last classes she needed to take because they weren't hands on.  They seemed like a complete waste of time.  So she spent her time getting an additional minor in film instead -- taking all the hands on courses.

 

My 2nd will probably do most of the work for a music major, but won't be interested in dotting all the i's for the actual degree.

 

There just seems to be a lot more wasted time and effort that goes into arts classes, from the student's perspective.  Yes, there's some busy work in STEM classes, but not as much.

 

This has been my impression at other colleges as well.  (And I also have a VERY low tolerance for busy work that isn't going anywhere -- as evidenced by my not quite music major....)

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The short answer is this, though:

It looks to me like one has to be very talented in the arts to make it in that field financially (or very persistent, which is maybe more important), but you can be a so-so engineer and make a living just fine.  Least, that seems to be how things are in our area.  Maybe we just have more jobs here.

 

Also, you can major in the arts and then go back for a professional degree in something else that actually puts food on the table.  (Know a lot of kids now doing this)

 

Debt is the only thing that might make that a bad choice.

 

 

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