The truth is, even in an excellent job market, those who earn an online graduate degree typically do better than those who do not. And it can become especially important when the economy dips, which it always does eventually.
If you’re considering earning an online master’s degree, the following are nine good reasons to make the commitment and enroll in an online program.
9 Reasons for Working Professionals to Earn an Online Graduate Degree
Boost Your Career Upward
A bachelor’s degree and talent will get you far in the business world. A master’s degree will take it to a new level. The skills learned in graduate school prepare you to become an innovator and leader in your chosen field. Master program graduates are ready to take on decision-making positions at the highest levels.
Many jobs skills are specific to niche positions in a certain industry. But the leadership skills learned in a master’s program or MBA program are applicable across all industries. Should another career field interest you, having a graduate-level skill set can help you more easily transition into a new industry.
Those who earn a master’s degree earn more than those who do not. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), across all professions nationwide, those with a master’s degree earn an average weekly salary of $1,434 while those with only a bachelor’s degree earn $1,198.
Cutting-Edge Knowledge and Skills
Data now drives the business world, although most companies are still in transition in this area. Understanding the latest ways to leverage technology and data to improve business operations makes those with a master’s degree great candidates for positions of responsibility.
Leadership skills such as communication and the ability to develop clear strategies are in demand in the business world. While many have technical skills, leadership skills are even more highly valued because of their relative rarity.
Most people think of earning a master’s degree to get a promotion or transition into another career – even launch their own company. However, you may love the job you are doing right now. A master’s degree helps there, too. Having a graduate degree makes you more valuable to a company and less likely to be laid off if things start to go badly for your company or the industry.
It’s Free – or Less Expensive
In some cases, earning a master’s degree is simply taking advantage of what is right there in front of you. Many companies offer tuition assistance for those who want to earn a master’s degree. It’s a major benefit that smart people take advantage of because there is no downside to earning a higher degree, especially at a reduced price.
Going to graduate school elevates your professional network. Even in online classes, you get to know your fellow students through chats and message boards. You will work with some of them on projects. Doing so will create a network of like-minded, ambitious people who can support you both professionally and personally throughout your career.
Online learning simply makes it more convenient to earn a higher-level degree. In the past, the time commitment alone would keep professionals from entering a master’s degree program. Online learning allows you to maintain your current job while attending classes on a schedule that makes sense for you. You also save on any traditional room and board costs.
These are nine of the reasons why earning a master’s degree is a good idea, even in a great job market. The economy goes up and down, but the skills you earn in graduate school never go out of favor and can help you ride out the turbulence.