Obtaining A Degree That Will Further Your IT Career

Whether you have work experience in the field of information technology or are simply preparing for an eventual career, pursuing a degree with specifications that relate to your desired type of work will provide a wider scope of employment opportunities which offer a higher pay grade. Information technology and its related fields are extremely employable- as of 2011, the unemployment rate for computer support specialists was a scant 0.8%. There are a wide variety of information technology jobs available, and as such, choosing a degree that has a specialization must be a serious consideration when planning to begin or enhance an IT career. Degrees such as network technology, computer science and software engineering all provide unique opportunities when going forward and seeking employment in the field.There is a widespread awareness of the demand for IT graduates, and as such, many students who are beginning college are choosing technology related majors. The increase of students who are majoring in these fields has increased the competition for scholarships and honors presented by schools and organizations. When choosing to begin or return to school to study information technology, students should be prepared to give themselves a competitive edge by working hard, learning as much as possible and taking advantage of special opportunities such as work study programs and internships that will give them real world experience which can help to sculpt a more employable resume.

One option that some information technology students take advantage of is the ability to obtain certifications while pursuing a degree. Certifications signify expertise in a specific area of practice. Currently, the most employable certifications include Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate, Private Cloud, Project Management Professional, VMware Certified Professional and Certified Information Systems Security Professional certifications. Pursuing any of these programs while also pursuing a degree in an information technology field will make a student more employable upon graduation. Schools often provide information on these certifications and even offer the programs and classes necessary to obtain them at a discount, making the task more convenient and economical than it would be otherwise.

Obtaining a post-graduate or graduate degree in an information technology field will arm you for the work force in a way that simply jumping into the field can not. People who have pursued extensive courses of study are often considered to be more qualified for complex jobs like system analysis, system administration, database administration and computer or software programming. The amount of jobs that require a bachelor’s degree as a bare minimum for qualification is rapidly increasing as the technology field expands and becomes more complex. Currently, the rate of unemployment is highest among those without a college degree, with the rate of employment for high school graduates declining 16% during the recession while employment rates for those with a bachelor’s degree declined only 7%. Straighter Line ranks computer and mathematics degrees as those with the second most earning potential, stating that recent graduates earn an average of $46,000 per year and are likely to escalate to an average of $76,000 per year with experience.

Most colleges and universities offer a variety of degree programs relating to information technology, but choosing the right university for you can depend on a multitude of factors. Exploring the graduate employment rate and average earnings of graduates in your preferred major when considering a school is wise. Currently, the most employable American college graduates are studying at Harvard, Yale, Stanford, MIT, Columbia, Princeton, Boston University, the California Institute of Technology, the University of Chicago and Brown University.