Will grad school improve your finances?

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by decimon, Oct 21, 2016.

  1. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

    The cost/benefit relationship for the MBA is pretty good. Competition has brought down the cost of the MBA, and its benefits but the MBA still provides one of the better roi.
  2. Graves

    Graves Member

    Most people are guilty because they don't do enough research when it comes to major choice, required experience, applicable accreditations, and ROI estimates. But I think a lot of colleges are guilty as well. If a college has no intention of receiving XYZ accreditation in a field that is dominated by individuals with said accreditation, I really think they should mention it to prospective students. That way they are aware of their options, or if the program meets certification guidelines. But there are many exceptions like business where experience and education are both important.

    Prospective students shouldn't think a good ROI is inherent, but colleges shouldn't sell all of their programs as instant money makers either. Even professional programs where the amount of debt is often substantial.
  3. Life Long Learning

    Life Long Learning Active Member

    A few years ago Gonzaga and the Univ of Oregon came to my kids school recruiting. They brag about how much YOU will spend to attend their school and about reputation. They speak ZERO on product outcome, ROI, jobs success, etc. Its all about them!

    Compare that to say one of 6 State colleges like the Maine Maritime Academy (a second tier school) that 95% of the graduates have a REAL high paying job BEFORE graduation. Fact, they are the highest paid coming out of Maine.

  4. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    People needing to get things done will hire people who get things done. Prima donnas who stand around sniffing themselves are of little use.
  5. Life Long Learning

    Life Long Learning Active Member

    That was funny! 100% true!
  6. TomE

    TomE New Member

    Unfortunately, even with the worsening prospects for law graduates, new law schools continue to pop up at a pretty regular pace. Many of these don't come with the prestige that more well-known and established schools do....but they oftentimes come with even higher price tags.

    Charleston School of Law - Admissions | Charleston School of Law $40k/year

    https://www.savannahlawschool.org/future-students/financial-aid/tuition/ $41k/year

    As much as people complain about for-profits, these examples seem similarly predatory in nature.
  7. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    Here we could look at the ABA and how it is intertwined with government.
  8. Paidagogos

    Paidagogos Member

    Original question: "Will grad school improve your finances?"

    In the short run, no.
    In the long run, yes.

    Two things to keep in mind when going to grad school: Know what your ROI for that degree is. When I started grad school I was taking expensive classes at a private school for a grad degree in history. I quickly came to the realization that was not going to work for me ($$$), nor was the payoff really going to be worth it. I looked for a cheaper alternative that would allow me to study what I wanted (English/History) and completed my MA for about ~$6,000-$7,000.

    At that price, I didn't care if it later would lead to a better job or pay or whatever. For a few years after graduating, it didn't. Now, three years after grad school, I sit in my own office as full-time English faculty at a CC. Now I am earning a living wage and have a healthcare plan, but there were years there where I was making well below the poverty line.

    So, in the end, is it worth it? Probably in just about every case. A little more education couldn't hurt. But, as others have said, don't feel like a grad degree is going to be the golden ticket to get into the job your want, and magically start making more money. That is just not the case!
  9. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    "Maine Maritime"

    I don't recall ever going to Maine Maritime for training but I did have some experience with Mass Maritime and the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy over my long-ago seagoing life. Those kids tend to do very, very well in their careers. I was often amazed by the sheer discipline and maturity those schools instill in students who were the same age I was when I was pissing away my time at a (good) liberal arts college. Plus, most of the B.S. grads receive a commission in the Navy or Coast Guard (or in the case of the USMMA, any uniformed service) and a U.S. Coast Guard license as a Merchant Marine officer. Those are very valuable credentials in the marketplace and not just for going to sea.

    The Merchant Marine Academies ARE very good schools but they also attract really high-quality students. (Frankly, I found the MM grads to be more all-around competent than the Service Academy grads and certainly easier to get along with but that's my personal opinion and probably well reflects my own prejudices.)

    EDIT: Oh, also the New York Maritime Academy. Same story.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 28, 2016
  10. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    New York has the USMMA in snooty Kings Point and the SUNY Maritime in Da Bronx.
  11. FTFaculty

    FTFaculty Well-Known Member

    I agree to an extent and certainly agree re: so many law schools. Given the market, I sincerely doubt we need 200, but there are success stories. I had a former undergraduate student attend Charleston SoL and he got an offer with a law firm straight out of law school and is now an associate. Likes his new career, will be some time before all the debt's paid off, but by his mid 30s, he'll be doing fine should he make partner.
  12. FTFaculty

    FTFaculty Well-Known Member

    To Nosborne48

    Very glad to see you here, your honor, been a long time.
  13. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

  14. Life Long Learning

    Life Long Learning Active Member

    California has one and so does Texas A&M. I think there might be a few 3rd tier ones also (private and very small ones).

    My cousin flunked out of University of Maine. Threw a hammer as a contractor to grow up and then when to Maine Maritime. The three Federal Academies are hard to get into and are the 1st tier. The 6+ State ones not as hard to get into. Most do not join the military at Maine. 85% get a civilian job. The end product between them and most colleges is a fact. That is why they make $$$ more than coffee servers from state university grads.

  15. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    Going frantic semantic, it seems there are five service academies. Maybe six, including DIA. And then there are the senior military colleges, including the one private military college, Norwich University.
  16. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    I felt the need to pop in here because this went a few days unchallenged.


    Have you reached this level of education while thinking that correlation implies causation?

    Are there people with masters degrees who make a lot of money? Yes, absolutely. And there are areas where a Masters degree will pay for itself in only a few years. The economic value of an MSN to an RN is clear.

    The economic value of an MBA to a regular employee is not. It may make them more competitive for a promotion. It may help them land a nice paying first job.

    The problem with saying that graduate school will pay off is that statistics like this lump all graduate degree holders together. So the MSW, who needed that degree to enter into the profession, is grouped in with the MBA holder who earned an MBA online during a period of unemployment to try to get back into the market/use the downtime to do something productive.

    But that MBA holder may never earn a single cent more than he or she otherwise would have earned without that MBA.
  17. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    There are so many different variables to consider, which can skew statistics.

    Which came first:
    - the egg [correlating chickens from eggs?]
    - the chicken

    Correlation is not necessarily proof of causation, especially if all variables are not accounted for.
  18. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    People with Masters degrees tend to have jobs and earn more money. Do they earn more money because they earned their Masters degrees? Do they have their jobs because of their Masters degrees? For some, the answer is yes.

    For others, and likely a significant amount of people, the answer is no. The Masters degree put them further in debt and did not bring them any closer to more money. Why did they get it? Because of misreading statistics like the one cited and listening to admissions representatives misrepresent those same statistics.

    I don't believe in an education bubble, per se. But I think just as sure as associate's degrees and certificates came under fire for poor completion rates, high debt loads and poor prospects post-graduation we are going to start seeing the same sort of scrutiny focusing on Masters degrees in the near future.
  19. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

    I know the old saying, "The business of America is business." but I continue to be amazed at the number of DL MBA programs (not to mention the B&M ones that get no attention here). How can they all stay in business? Where do all these MBA students come from? And more importantly, where do they all go with their freshly minted degrees? Do they really all go out into the business world and get nice MBA jobs or do some of them just remain the Night Manager at the supermarket? I don't know and to a certain extent I don't care. Maybe it's like the lottery. You probably wont' win but you can't win if you don't play. Maybe you'd get the job without the MBA, just with hard work, but maybe degree inflation is creating a glass ceiling in certain jobs. You know, a kind of "don't even apply if you don't have an MBA" situation. I know that I could make more money if I got a (relevant) grad degree but I don't do it because I'd also wind up sitting behind a desk all day counting rivets or welding rods or something like that.:yuck::no1::thanks:
  20. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

    There is a correlation between graduate degrees and higher earning. My guess, that has been established to be statistically significant a long time ago. I am sure there is someone here who can give us the many correlation coefficients/ coefficient of determinations and p values from the many studies.
    I said nothing in my post about causation. However, you did an excellent shooting down the idea that correlation is not the same thing causation. On the other hand, it is much more difficulty to argue, that higher income proceeded graduate education at a statically level of significant unless in retirement.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 1, 2016

Share This Page