More importantly than what a bachelor’s degree IS, is what you can DO with a bachelor’s degree. A college degree, while usually a short-term financial burden, is a sound economic investment in your future. Higher education contributes to the betterment of your mind and your social and intellectual well-being. There is even evidence to show that higher education benefits your lifelong health. Of course, a bachelor’s degree also appeals to employers, and college graduates consistently earn better starting pay than non-graduates.
Technically speaking, a bachelor’s degree is an academic degree conferred by a college or university upon those who complete the undergraduate curriculum, according to thefreedictionary.com. But what makes you desirable to employers is not really the piece of paper you earned from your college. It’s more about what you learned to get to graduation that matters in the working world.
R. Eric Landrum of Boise State University offers several insights on what really makes a college graduate desirable. First is a solid knowledge base, which your employer will know you have mastered and can implement in the workplace. Your thinking and language skills will usually be more developed and mature than someone without higher education. College graduates are able to gather and synthesize information, as well as research and represent their conclusions. People with higher education have better interpersonal skills that allow them to interact more effectively with colleagues. And those with college degrees will have a better understanding of history and the world around them than those with less education.
For many students, of course, the incentive to earn a degree is the financial benefits involved. The Census Bureau shows that over an adult life, a high school graduate will earn an average of only $1.2 million, while a graduate with a bachelor’s degree will earn a substantial average of about $2.1 million. The cost of higher education may be steep, but it is manageable and rewarding in the long run. And what is more, college graduates enjoy more hobbies and leisure activities than non-graduates, according to the Institute for Higher Education Policy.
It is hard to say exactly WHAT a bachelor’s degree will mean for you, since there are many options on the path to a degree. All kinds of programs are available to individualize your higher education experience. What is important to keep in mind, ultimately, are the many benefits of a college education. What you develop from those skills is up to you, but they are a solid foundation for your life and career.