A 2017 study shows that while students who complete vocational and career-oriented programs have better short-term employment outcomes, they struggle to keep up with industry changes and lack the necessary skills to adapt. Restaurant relations requires a different set of skills for which liberal arts majors, Anders argues, are well-suited. Graduates of liberal arts programs obtain skills valued by employers. Putting your liberal arts degree to work. But maybe it’s time for the smirking to stop. That fact could be the source of the problem. Retrieved from https://study.com/articles/Why_a_Liberal_Arts_Degree_is_a_Better_Move_for_Your_Career_than_You_Might_Think.html. It doesn’t take many data analysts and software engineers to manage the system and crunch the numbers; OpenTable needs only 14 such experts nationwide. A liberal arts education also encourages sharing and listening to others’ ideas, which helps develop students’ oral communication skills. After all, if we want our kids to grow up to be good humans, it only makes sense that they’re taught by humans. Graduates of liberal arts programs obtain skills valued by employers. Marketing teams have to understand what gets people excited and why. You want to hone your soft skills. Anders claims that one of the skills most developed by the humanities is analytical skills, “[w]hether it’s decoding a sonnet, or taking apart a fragment of ancient history, or looking at something that an archeologist has unearthed. Among other things, we may receive free products, services, and/or monetary compensation in exchange for featured placement of sponsored products or services. An English major may study a story, looking for its underlying meaning while simultaneously understanding the text as a conversation between the reader and the author that reveals the perspectives and biases of both. And with a degree in liberal arts, the skills you’ve honed include those that employers want in their workers. You aren't going to get far in a liberal arts degree program if you can't take in information and analyze it. A history major may be asked to look at world events through the perspectives of different groups of people with an understanding of how “history” changes with the teller. Earnings data from PayScale shows that many liberal arts majors achieve strong mid-career incomes that close the gap with other majors. Good thing liberal arts majors spend most of their school time writing and discussing what they're studying. A Liberal Arts Degree is an academic program that provides a comprehensive overview of humanities-related classes. When you take courses in any humanities discipline, you use different methods to learn about individuals, including yourself, and groups of people. He argues that this is why “most people in political careers [have] liberal arts degrees. Starting salary: $47,100. According to a National Association of Colleges and Employers spring 2016 survey, employers rated critical thinking, professionalism and teamwork as the … It's free! Extra classes, part-time jobs, internships and summer jobs are all great ways to acquire these skills. Many LACs don’t actually offer an engineering major, and instead offer 5-year engineering programs in partnership with another school. If you’re an ambitious student who’s looking for a Liberal Arts degree which will strengthen your intellectual capacities in a tangible way and will increase your employability rate then King’s College is a brilliant option. Liberal arts programs give such a wide range of experiences that it's easy … Strong speaking and writing abilities are incredibly important in pretty much every career field. These skills are crucial in the workplace. AAC&U’s survey revealed that 80% of executives thought students should have a “broad knowledge” of the liberal arts, regardless of their major, and 74% of executives would recommend a liberal arts education to their children or the child of someone they know. That’s because software developers aren’t the only workers they need; they also need those who can humanize technology and make it usable and appealing for everyone. Yet surprisingly, many employers in so-called STEM-heavy industries such as tech are intentionally choosing to hire liberal arts grads – and at even higher rates than computer science and engineering majors. Although the original purpose of the app was to create an easy way for customers to make restaurant reservations, OpenTable makes much of its money selling customer behavior data to restaurants. Mid-career salary: $85,400. Already, we’re seeing robots picking stocks, doing legal research, and even writing articles. All this is to say that liberal arts degrees are valuable learning experiences. Liberal arts majors are sought by many employers for possessing the type of skills 93% of them seek, according to a 2014 Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U) study. This skill is something that can be carried across all careers. While we do our best to keep these updated, numbers stated on this site may differ from actual numbers. Businesses thrive on innovation and change, so employers covet workers who can think outside the box. Whether a liberal arts degree is worth it to you depends on your interests, skills, and chosen career path. Amherst College doesn’t have official pre-med or business majors, for example, but it still sends quite a few students to graduate programs in those fields. One way to distinguish yourself from the competition is a well-rounded education. Business degrees in Finance (20th), Accounting (31st), Management (37th), and Marketing (41st) all fall lower on the list than such liberal arts degrees as History (11th), Anthropology (15th), English (16th), Art History (17th), and Political Science (19th). Liberal arts studies, in general, get a bad rap when it comes to career utility. Likewise, though many online courses don’t need to be taught by live teachers, it’s unlikely parents will want robots replacing their kids’ elementary school teachers. In this ever-changing, global economy, a liberal arts degree prepares students for the creative thinking that leads to innovation and problem solving. It's almost like they too had experienced people who thought these degrees weren't useful. Liberal arts students often feel overwhelmed by all the career directions they can go, says Karyn McCoy, assistant vice president of DePaul University’s Career Center in Chicago. From political science to sociology to psychology, humanities students are well-versed in all kinds of human problems, and their day-to-day studies often include intense discussions about potential solutions to individual, local, and even global issues. And blue-collar jobs aren’t the only ones at risk; if a job can be automated, within the next few decades, it likely will be. MIT professors Erik Bynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee argue in their book “The Second Machine Age” that today’s tech surge will inspire a new kind of workplace where technology takes care of routine tasks so people can concentrate on what they do best: exercising empathy and generating creative ideas. The skills and traits they specifically look for include: These highly sought-after skills are often termed “soft skills” to distinguish them from “hard skills,” which refer to the technical and occupational skills needed to perform a specific job. Are you a liberal arts major? Yet even at the height of the Great Depression, William Tolley, in his 1931 inaugural address as the president of Allegheny College, made a case for a liberal arts education: “Specialists are needed in all vocations, but only as long as their vocations last, and vocations have a tendency now to disappear almost overnight.” Tolley argued that in a rapidly shifting world, the broad knowledge covered by the liberal arts is “the finest vocational training any school can offer.”. References to products, offers, and rates from third party sites often change. Marketable Skills. Straying off the beaten path with your career choices doesn't mean you've wasted your education. Many experts agree that the last jobs robots will replace are those that require the most humanity, making the humanities the 21st-century curriculum for a robot-proof education. Though students may never write these kinds of papers after graduation, the skills required to complete them are highly sought after by employers. This leads to a belief that Liberal Arts students suffer from: A lack of preparation for employment or jobs. And, despite the ongoing trend to turn students away from these types of degrees, many employers agree. (Why a Liberal Arts Degree is Better for Your Career than You Might Think. Mixing creativity, communication and analytical skills, marketing and public relations can be a wonderful fit for liberal arts majors. And with that wider view, they may discover the route they want to take requires an advanced degree… In an age of artificial intelligence, higher education – especially in the humanities – is more important than ever. Why do we call the liberal arts 'liberal'? Why a Liberal Arts Degree is Better for Your Career than You Might Think. … Should you need such advice, consult a licensed financial or tax advisor. Liberal arts colleges emphasize undergraduate study in a variety of subjects including the arts, sciences, and humanities. It may be that employers are proving the case. Needless to say, I started to panic at the end of my degree because I didn't know if I would get a job when I left. These include interpersonal, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. Someone who can code and speak in plain English is crucial in today’s marketplace. In a field such as computer science, you could end up facing steep competition in an overcrowded market. Studying liberal arts will provide you with the necessary skill set to succeed in the working world. Of course, it goes without saying that you can be an excellent communicator and critical thinker without a liberal arts degree. These “employability skills” Oh, this Liberal Arts Degree was totally worth it. Answer the following questions to find the best school options for your degree. According to the most recent salary survey published by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) average starting salaries for liberal arts majors have risen to about $40,000, annually. For students looking to continue their education (a masters degree, medical school, law school, etc. A 2015 LinkedIn study found that tech companies are hiring liberal arts grads at faster rates than those with computer science and engineering degrees. In reality, there are many benefits of earning a humanities or liberal arts degree. My favorite part about college was talking in feminism to get into girls pants at parties. Liberal arts degrees are appealing to employers: employers recognize that liberal arts graduates have the necessary transferable skills to adapt to a changing workplace. What You Can Do With a Liberal Arts Degree Liberal arts students learn a wide range of skills that prepare them for jobs ranging from advertising to web development. George Anders, author of “You Can Do Anything: The Surprising Power of a ‘Useless’ Liberal Arts Degree,” argues that, far from making you useless to the workforce, a liberal arts degree empowers you to take on just about anything. In fact, during my first year of University, some of the professors made a point of explaining why a Liberal Arts degree is a good thing to have and how opportunities are endless. '” Building rapport through empathy is something liberal arts majors train in, whether they’re seeking to understand soldiers in ancient Athens or relate to the character of Jay Gatsby. Study.com College Advisor that can help you compare costs and options. - Cost, Perception & Downsides, Benefits of Attending Community College for 2 Years to Save Money, Top 5 Money Mistakes You Should Avoid in College, 13 Places to Buy Cheap Discount Sports Tickets Online & Off, 7 Types of Common Craigslist Scams to Watch Out for, 65 Financial Terms Every Investor Needs to Have in Their Vocabulary (List), The ability to work well as part of a team (78.9%), Excellent written communication skills (70.2%), Excellent verbal communication skills (68.9%). Because a liberal arts degree exposes you to different perspectives and ways of thinking, it not only gives you the ability to embrace multiple perspectives but also to understand the limitations of different kinds of thinking. Leaders and decision-makers who can consider a broader, more diverse range of ideas will be better able to run businesses and governments and react to difficult situations. Learn about what courses are available and what topics they cover to... An admission advisor from each school can provide more info about: Get Started with University of Pennsylvania, Get Started with University of Notre Dame. While there may be an immediate benefit and an easily discernible ROI in such choices, taking a longer-term view may prove even more beneficial in such uncertain times. However, that's not necessarily a bad thing. Innovative thinking is another essential skill liberal arts students develop. Sarah Graves, Ph.D. is a freelance writer specializing in personal finance, parenting, education, and creative entrepreneurship. 4. A degree in Liberal Arts is a long-term investment in your career: A recent study by the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems showed that students with a liberal arts degree tend to earn slightly more after a few years of experience as compared to those who earn high at the starting of their careers holding a professional degree in management or other field. © 2020 Money Crashers, LLC. But a philosophy major? Gaposchkin argues that the skills developed in a liberal arts program are transferable to any context or career. Liberal Arts, Humanities, and General Studies, off the beaten path with your career choices, Online Liberal Arts Degrees by Program Level, Online Masters Degree in Liberal Arts: Program Overviews, Online Liberal Arts Schools and Colleges: How to Choose, Salary and Career Info for a Bachelor of General Studies Graduate, Online Colleges with Degrees in Humanities: How to Choose, Career Information for a Degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences, Liberal Studies Major and Bachelor's Degree Program Information, Liberal Arts Masters Degree Program Information, Online Associate's Degree in Liberal Arts: Program Info, Cost Analysis of Distance Learning Liberal Arts Programs, Jobs, Salaries, and Career Info for Humanities Majors, Top Schools for Liberal Arts and Humanities Programs, Political Science Degree Program and Career Video. However, the liberal arts degree is often viewed as 'too broad and lacking focus' because it allows investigation into many subjects, such as literature, sociology, philosophy, math and political science. That’s why graduates with business majors currently face the highest unemployment rates; there are simply so many of them. People in this field need to engage with customers, investors, fund managers, and even internal employees around the globe, so great communication skills are in high demand. Although it’s true that STEM majors are in high demand, it’s also true that liberal arts and humanities degrees teach students skills that …