Study shows some majors pay off more than others



By Amelia Orwick

College students across the country spend thousands of dollars every year to earn their degree, but a recent study shows some majors may pay off more than others.

The study, done by the Georgetown University Center on Education and Workforce, found that nontechnical majors such as arts and humanities generally have the highest unemployment rates.

“The unemployment rate for recent graduates is highest in Architecture (13.9 percent) because of the collapse of the construction and home building industry in the recession,” according to the study.

Shelby Tucker, a UK interior design freshman, said she hasn’t let these statistics scare her from her passion.

“I think that if you’re doing something you love and are interested in, then you’ll find a way to make it work,” Tucker said.

Business majors are among the most successful, with the exception of hospitality management, which has been hampered by the slow of the travel industry, the study said.

The economic recession has influenced job availability in recent years.

The study reported that “unemployment rates are relatively low (5.4 percent) for recent college students who majored in health care and education because those majors are attached to stable or growing industry sectors.”

However, availability isn’t the only factor that varies across majors.

In terms of earnings, those who major in subjects related to technical, business or health care fields make the most, with engineering at the top for recent and experienced college graduates, according to the study.

To combat unemployment and help students develop a career plan, the UK College of Arts and Sciences offers the course, “A&S 350: Personal Strengths and Career Development.”

Gregory Bocchino, director of advising and student services for the College ,said many students have expressed great appreciation for the course and the realizations about their future it helped bring.

The idea for the study, titled “Hard Times,” originated during a discussion about the current economic status of the country and world, said Andrea Porter from the Georgetown Center’s Public Relations.

Director of Research Jeff Strohl led the study, along with the Anthony Carnevale, the Center’s director, and analyst Ban Cheah. The researchers are hopeful that their work will help students make more informed decisions about their future

professional lives.

“It is important for us to provide students with information that helps them link their college major to the labor market,” Porter said. “We hope the report will help students understand the realities in the labor market and learn about the skills that might make them more employable upon graduation.”