From sharpening your current skills to making yourself more competitive for new job opportunities, a graduate degree can be a smart move. 805,000 people earned master’s degrees in 2016 to 2017, the latest year for which data is available. Business (187,000 degrees), education (146,000 degrees), and health professions and related programs (119,000 degrees) led the number of degrees earned. Below are reasons why you should pursue a master’s degree.
1. Gives Greater Career Opportunities
A master’s degree can make it easier to transition into more senior positions, such as management and leadership. Some of that movement is already happening. 38% of employers have raised their educational requirements in the past few years. Also, 33% of employers are hiring those with master’s degrees to fill positions that used to go to those with four-year degrees. The skills required for those jobs have evolved, 61% of employers. A master’s degree can help you get in on this trend and solidify your career opportunities.
2. Helps Grow and Sharpen Your Skills
With a master’s degree, you can learn new skills and improve your existing ones. Such hard and soft skills may include:
- Managing relationships
- Understanding industry issues
- Communication and problem solving
- Critical thinking and analysis
- Writing and research
3. Credibility and Respect
Earning a master’s degree is worthy of respect due to the time involved and sacrifice made to obtain it. Many organizations view a master’s degree as a strong testament to a person’s capabilities and drive to succeed. That may make them more willing to trust graduate degree holders in positions of power.
4. Can Help You Make a Career Change
Earning a master’s degree offers you versatility and opens up your options by making you more marketable. That may be the best way to break the cycle and get into a job you really enjoy. In fact, the unemployment rate for those with a master’s degree is lower than for those who hold only a bachelor’s degree or less.