Should I Pick a College Major Based on How Much Money It Makes?

When exploring colleges and majors, you may be hearing quite a bit about salaries. This could absolutely influence your decision, but should you only pick a college major based on how much money it makes? It really depends on your own goals and interests. These are some considerations you should keep in mind as you make a decision.

College major books on a shelf

Find a Balance

While how much money you make in a career can definitely have an impact on your college major choice, you don’t want it to be the only deciding factor. For example, some computer science and engineering students have the potential to take home a hefty salary, but if you have absolutely no interest in those courses or careers, it can be difficult to pursue.

In order to succeed in your classes or future career, you need some interest in them. Otherwise, you could easily become the victim of burnout. Instead, you want to find a balance. You’ll want to find a major that fits your passions and financial goals.

Compare Careers

This means doing a little bit of career comparison. A great example to use for this is English. The liberal arts major is often thought to be a bad option for high salaries or career options, but there is quite a bit you can do with a degree in English. You could opt for a lower salary career or a higher one depending on your goals and interests.

You could opt to be a writer which averages about $47,000 a year or a technical writer that averages $62,000. Strong screenwriters have the potential to make quite a bit, but you could also not succeed in this field or be a minor player, making less. English majors can also opt to teach, teach abroad, explore careers in marketing, content management, or communication.

While a major may average a certain salary, that doesn’t mean you will earn that salary or choose the right career that nets you that amount. It’s essential to do your research and fully explore your options, salaries, and passions before deciding on a major.

Talk to an Adviser

If you’re not quite sure what to choose when it comes to a major or even a career goal, it’s essential to talk to an adviser. Both high school and college advisers are equipped with the tools to help you carefully go through your options. They can talk you through the pros and cons of each major as well as each career. Advisers also have the capabilities to set you up with programs that can help you make a decision such as volunteering, work-study, or shadowing opportunities in your interested fields.

So Should You Pick a College Major Based on How Much Money It Makes?

Choosing a major isn’t always easy, especially if you have salaries in mind, but you need to look at your choice from multiple angles to ensure it is the right one. Salary should absolutely play a role, but you also need to explore career options, backups in case your first career doesn’t work out, and your passions and interests. Without all of this, you could find yourself burnt out before you even graduate college.



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