Should I take another degree?
“I am a graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Library, Archive and Information studies. . My choice of study was influenced by a friend who had been at the university before me.
After graduation I could not find a job that utilised my degree. The only job I have ever secured is an ordinary security officer, where many colleagues do not even have a high school leaving certificate.
I have always regretted this, and am thinking of pursuing another career, where I could be happier, earn more and would give me career satisfaction,
I am earning very little and would need to pay for a new course from my savings and earnings.
I am considering pursuing another degree in either Mass Communication or Information Technology as I could not afford to pay for a Master’s program. Alternatively I might engage in developing a business.
I really don’t know what to do for the best to enable me to improve my situation. Please help me in shaping my future.”
First of all, follow the advice I have given in the lessons by considering each course of action very carefully. List the pros and cons of each course of action.
Also investigate potential career prospects for each course you may study. Ask the University for Statistics about the employment rate and salaries of students leaving the course.
Search for jobs as if you already held the degree and research the jobs market .What jobs are available, what skills and qualifications do they call for? Is there suitable work in your region? What salaries are on offer? Will you enjoy the work?
In the case of a degree in Information Technology, it is important to note that a degree may be less up to date than a vendor specific qualification, such as one from Microsoft or Cisco. A degree is literally an academic qualification, and as such focuses on teaching you to think, argue and reason, rather than imparting specific up to date skills you would use to carry out an IT project in the real world.
Compare and contrast the outlook for each course you are considering. And also for a Master’s degree. Again, list the pros and cons of each course. If you had carried out this exercise for your first degree would you perhaps have selected another degree course to study?
So I would recommend this kind of research for anyone planning to undertake a degree course, or any other study. Do the research BEFORE the study.
But in your case, do you actually need to do another degree? Or even a Masters?
Consider that many jobs specify that only graduates can apply. You are already a graduate. Many skills are transferable, and unless you do a vocational course like medicine, teaching, accountancy or engineering, then the subject matter is not terribly relevant.
Many companies specify a graduate as a kind of filter for applications. They know graduates have a certain level of intelligence, the ability to apply themselves, persevere, and achieve an objective. They will teach you the specific skills you will need to do the job. They are probably unique to the company, its software and systems, and no graduate will have them. They will be used to transferring these skills to all their staff.
So research what avenues are open to you as a graduate with some work experience.
Review and rewrite your CV to showcase your transferable skills and your graduate status, together with skills and abilities you use in your current work, such as organisational skills, time management, punctuality, reliability, team work. Leadership. Also include any skills you can demonstrate from other activities such as voluntary work, sports club membership, youth work.