bachelor’s degree

Free Tuition for Starbucks Employees Through New Program

It’s no secret, college is expensive. For many, that expense has simply gotten too high. College tuition has risen 80 percent in the last 10 years alone. This increase means that some people can’t go to college, or complete their degree, no matter how much they desire to. Starbucks has decided to do something about this problem, and announced the Starbucks College Plan earlier this week.

Starting in the fall, Starbucks will help many of their part- and full-time U.S. partners (employees) complete their college degrees. Through a partnership with Arizona State University (ASU), Starbucks will allow its partners to finish their bachelor’s degree with full tuition reimbursement.

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More College Graduates are Filing Bankruptcy Now than Ever Before

Students go to college to learn more about the world around them, learn a trade or profession, and the end goal is to get a job that will allow them to pay the bills.

Unfortunately, with the job market in such a dismal state, this is not the reality that is awaiting many recent college graduates. Instead, they are graduating with more debt than ever before and, without a job to help them pay off their debts, many students are now seeking protection from their outstanding debts by declaring bankruptcy.

According to a survey released by the Institute for Financial Literacy, the percent of college graduates who have earned a bachelor’s degree and owe some sort of debt has increased from 11.2 percent in 2006 to 13.6 percent last year. Interestingly enough, the percentage of those who have not finished college or who only have a high school diploma and are in debt has decreased.

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USA Falling Behind in College Attainment Rates

Two years ago, President Obama announced plans to make the USA a leading country in the international education race by 2020. Many people were excited for this hope to become reality, but it seems like we might be slipping farther away from our goal.

According to a new report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, less Americans are completing their college education than young adults in other countries. This has made us fall from 12th to 16th place in the share of young adults (ages 25-34) who have earned a degree. The countries who are leading the race in this younger demographic are South Korea, Canada, and Japan.

Why is America slipping behind other countries in college attainment rates? There are two explanations for this. One is that more and more people are attending college in Asia and Europe than ever before. Another factor is that these foreign nations focus on education degrees that take less time to complete; instead of the four-year plans that many college in the USA follow, colleges in other countries offer many one-year or two-year degree plans.

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Is a Bachelor’s Degree Not Enough to Land a Job?

As a recent college graduate, I can relate to William Klein. Klein recently graduated from the College at Brockport, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in history. Shortly after graduating, Klein moved back in with his parents and returned to his high school job, serving tables for $7.25/hour. It’s not that Klein did not look for another job or that he didn’t apply for these jobs. The problem is that these employers did not think that Klein had enough education and needed to get a master’s degree before they would consider hiring him.

Long gone are the days when a bachelor’s degree was enough education to get your foot in the door at a prestigious job. Instead, the master’s degree has become the newest ticket you will need to ride the ride.

Some are calling this new trend credential inflation, but whatever you call it, there is no denying the fact that more and more people are pursuing a master’s degree in order to get a job. In 2009, 657,000 master’s degrees were awarded; this number has doubled since the 1980s and has increased even more substantially in the past few years.

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Georgetown Study Finds the Value of Bachelor Degrees

Georgetown University’s Center for Education and the Workforce has released a new study assessing the monetary value of college degrees. The report highlights the average income of graduates, grouped by bachelor degree subjects. Findings also address the gaps in gender by degree program and average income differences by gender and race. Of the 171 majors analyzed, the incomes range from $120,000 down to $29,000.

Titled “What’s it Worth? The Economic Value of College Majors” the study aimed to analyze the connection between degrees and average incomes. While findings show that bachelor degrees do pay off, the more important findings prove the importance of picking a degree program.

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Kansas Universities Lower Degree Requirements

Kansas University

Kansas University

When I was accepted to the University of Oklahoma, I received a list of all of the classes and hours I would need in order to graduate. I’ve been chipping away at my required hours for four years, and finally graduation is in sight.

With those numbers being your end goal for so long, can you imagine if the requirements for graduation changed while you were a student? What if suddenly a change in requirements affected when you would graduate? For students at universities in Kansas, this is an issue they now have to face.

According to the Associated Press, The Kansas Board of Regents announced on October 21, 2010 that they would decrease the minimum number of hours needed for a bachelor’s degree from 124 to 120. This will affect students, but not necessarily in a bad way. Students now need less education to graduate than they did last semester, which will make graduating easier. Read the rest of this entry »



College Grads More Likely to Get Married

weddingIf you’re looking to settle down and get married, you might want to get a degree before looking for your soul mate.

A recent study released by the Pew Research Center reported that adults are more likely to get married by the age of 30 if they have a bachelor’s degree than young adults that do not obtained one.

“There’s a double whammy going on for the people who aren’t college-educated,” said Richard Fry, from the research center. “They are facing difficult employment, and they are less likely to enter into marriage and receive the economic benefits marriage provides.”

Two decades ago, it was more probable for people without college degrees to wed, Fry said. Married couples without higher education relied on the benefits of marriage to counterbalance their low-income wages. Read the rest of this entry »



Real Benefits to Earning Your Higher Education

studyingDo you ever wonder if these four years of college are ever going to be worth all the study/all-nighters/expense/lack of a social life/work/every other bad thing you can think of about college? Is it really worth getting up at 6:00am to make that 7:00am chemistry lab? What about the rising cost of tuition? There are many things that could discourage you from pursuing a higher education. Is it worth it? Experts say yes.

According to a new study by the College Board, “workers with a college degree earned much more and were much less likely to be unemployed than those with only a high school diploma.”

In 2008, this study found that the median earnings of workers with a bachelor’s degree were $55,700. Workers who had only earned their high school diploma made $21,900 on average. Women who have earned their bachelor’s degree earn 79 percent more than those who only have their high school diploma; for men, it was 74 percent more. Read the rest of this entry »



What’s Your Bachelor’s Degree Worth?

degree worthYou probably thought that earning a bachelor’s degree meant making more money. But with the current challenging job market, recent graduates aren’t receiving the starting salaries that they probably expected.

But there’s still hope on the horizon. Although starting salaries had been on a downhill slope, they are starting to stabilize.

2010 graduates’ average starting salary is $48,288, according to a survey organized by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, also known as NACE. While that’s 0.7 percent down from last year’s average starting salary, Marilyn Mackes, NACE executive director, said that the decline appears to be leveling off. Read the rest of this entry »



Tips to Ensure You Graduate Early

graduationWhen we think of a bachelor’s degree, we think of a four-year degree, right? It doesn’t have to be that way. If you work hard enough, you can graduate a semester early, or maybe even a year early. If you make a plan, and follow these tips, you’ll be in a cap and gown before you know it:

Take summer courses: Save some of your extracurricular classes for the summer so you get them out of the way, but won’t get bogged down with lots of homework. Consider taking something fun like yoga or bowling. If you run out of extracurriculars, see if your college offers summer pre-sessions, so you won’t waste away your summer behind a desk.

Find a major and don’t change it: It’s usually the five-year seniors who can’t seem to pick a major. So, unless you’re planning on joining them, have your major set in stone by your sophomore year. If you’re deciding between a few, pick the major that will allow you to have the most career options. Remember that you will have plenty of time after you graduate to pick another degree if need be. Read the rest of this entry »