This summer, Freakonomics radio show tried to pinpoint the dollar value of a college degree in a two-part series. Their interviewees included a Berkeley economist, an FBI agent who led the crackdown on fake diplomas and political strategist Karl Rove – a recent speaker at Canisius College. They discussed the cost-benefit decisions potential students need to make and considered what skills a new degree really offers. While one expert did attempt to identify the precise return on investment in college, Freakonomics host Steve Levitt summed it up best:
The best way I think an economist thinks about the value of education is tries to figure out how the market rewards it and what other benefits come with it. And one thing is clear is that the market puts a tremendous reward on education. The best estimates that economists have are that each extra year of education that you get is worth about maybe an eight percent increment to your earnings each year for the rest of your life. So it turns out for most people buying a lot of education, or at least for the average person let me say, buying a lot of education is a really good deal.
Higher education may pay off in more than just a pay raise. To employers, the right degree signifies a special accomplishment. It speaks of your work ethic, motivation and commitment to being at the top of your field. If you’re not in a field that requires a specific graduate degree, you might be wondering which program will really fit you best.
The right degree aims to equip you with the skills to lead in today’s dynamic, global workforce. No matter your field, cross-cultural competency and effective communication skills are absolutely essential. In fact, effective communication, leadership and the ability to work on a team are three of the most required “Employee Qualifications” on new job posts. This is because no matter your work, you will need to be able to collaborate with others, handle conflict and cultivate innovation. The right degree program can give you new ways of interacting with people, understanding situations and solving problems – skills that are a unique edge in any industry.
Are you considering returning to school to develop your communication and leadership skills? Make sure you explore the Masters in Communication & Leadership at Canisius College. The degree program is designed to provide students the resources to refine these skills for competitive advantage in the workplace.