So, it’s the day after graduation, and you’ve now got your degree. Four years of hard studying, preparing for exams, and having fun at college have paid off. But there’s a sudden realization — what are you going to do now that you’ve got a degree?
You may be in the same situation as many students who finish college — not really sure how to use your degree. For the previous four years, things were straightforward, and you had few decisions to make. You had a daily routine with classes to attend, professors to meet, and homework to finish on time.
Now that you’ve graduated, you must decide what to do with your degree. It seems that there are so many opportunities that it’s difficult to choose. Even if you’ve got a bachelor’s degree in nursing or law, you still need to figure out if you should get a master’s degree or find a job.
So, if you’re asking the question: “I got my degree, now what?” you’re in the right place. This article looks at four things you can do after graduation. You’ll find the pros and cons of getting a graduate job, enrolling in a master’s degree, taking a gap year, or going for an internship.
How to Decide on What to With a Degree
First, it’s vital to make the best choices for the right reasons. The opportunity of deciding what to do after getting a degree doesn’t come around often. For some people, getting full-time employment is ideal. However, for others, furthering their education the best choice. Or taking a break is the perfect solution for some graduates.
Whatever you decide, it must suit your career path. Here are some questions to ask yourself:
- Was studying for my bachelor’s tough going? If so, graduate school isn’t going to get any easier.
- Why do I want to work full-time? Maybe you already have several high-paying job offers.
- Can I only achieve my career goals with a master’s degree? Then, your choice is straightforward.
- Will working as an intern give me more experience and then return to college for my master’s?
4 Opportunities After Getting a Degree
With your degree in hand, let’s look at four opportunities that are now available to you.
1. Find a graduate job after getting a degree
Getting a high-paying, full-time job is now possible thanks to your degree. You have the chance to put all the theory you learned in school into practice. You also have the latest training and information in your industry, making you a valuable asset to any company. Also, the quicker you gain experience, the better worker you will become.
Another reason for getting a graduate job is to start making money faster. After all, those student loans aren’t going to disappear. For some people, it makes sense to reduce student debt as quickly as possible.
There is one thing to consider about looking for work immediately after college — competition for jobs. With many students graduating at the same time, it can be tough to find a graduate job.
However, there are many jobs available for graduates with any degree. Here are a few careers that don’t require a specific major:
- Human Resources
Of course, you can also put all your passion, dedication, and drive that you learned in college into starting your own company.
2. Go for an internship
Working as an intern is an excellent opportunity to get experience in the industry you want to work in. Internships don’t require a long commitment, and you may find that many more job opportunities open if you have experience. Taking an internship is also an ideal choice if you want more experience before taking a postgraduate program.
One of the downsides of internships is that you may end up working long hours for little pay. So, it would be best if you weighed up any financial commitments you have with the experience you’ll gain as an intern.
3. Pursue postgraduate study
The benefits of earning a master’s degree are better jobs, better pay, and better job prospects. Another two to four years of study can pay off if you can earn more money in a job you love. You could also explore the options of moving to another country to get your master’s degree. This way, you’ll widen your horizons and get to experience different cultures.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average wage for workers with a master’s degree far exceeds those with a bachelor’s degree. In some industries, the level of pay is 90 percent higher for graduates with a master’s.
It’s good to remember that enrolling in a postgraduate program isn’t for everyone. More college education means more debt. Even if you find enough scholarships to pay for education, you won’t earn a full-time wage in school.
4. Take a gap year
Taking a gap year after you have got your degree is an excellent choice for many people. Traveling for a year gives you the chance to learn about different cultures, gain experience, and broaden your horizons. After four years of hard work in school, you probably feel you deserve some time off. For many graduates, the chance to take a year off only comes around once in their lifetime.
There’s another advantage that a gap year offers — employment. Traveling to different countries could open up new job prospects. You may even find that you enjoy living somewhere so much that you want to move there. With fantastic opportunities for remote working, you could earn a high wage in a country with a lower cost of living.
What are the downsides of taking a gap year? First, there is the question of money. You must finance your travel and accommodation. Of course, you could get part-time work. But you may not want to risk all your savings on travel.
I Got My Degree — Now I Know What to Do
Getting a degree is usually a stepping stone to a lucrative and fulfilling career. After graduating, take some time to think about your career path. Getting a job, a master’s degree, or even taking a gap year could help you fulfill your dreams after college. Thankfully, you can always change your decision. But the main thing is that you have your degree.