Even though statistics show that college graduates can earn substantially more over the course of their lifetimes than people with high school educations or less, a college degree is no longer the instant ticket to success that it once was. Case in point, more and more young adults are moving back home with their parents after college rather than getting their own apartments. Many recent grads—even those with master’s degrees—are unemployed or underemployed, taking jobs that do not require a college education, often in industries like retail or food service.
Research has found that the availability of jobs and starting salary range depend heavily on a person’s choice of college major. Students with technology-related majors seem to fare far better than people who graduate with degrees in non-technical areas like the humanities. Why? Simply put, we are living in a technological society and things are changing constantly. Even supermarkets and doctors’ offices have gone digital.
Essential Colleges Courses for Technology Majors
You might not realize it, but you should start preparing for your future job hunt while you’re still in school. Whether you’re planning to become a systems engineer, software developer, computer technician or any other IT professional, here are three college courses that will be vital to your success:
Public speaking. Even though you will probably not be required to get on stage in front of others at work, learning how to get your point across and occasionally influence others with your opinion will come in handy in any technology job. Good communication skills will make you appear polished and professional. This not only comes in handy on job interviews; it can help you train co-workers and clients, collaborate with other people, and even make sales.
Writing. Regardless of the type of technology job you are seeking, you will need good English and grammar skills. This skill set will help you create a dazzling resume. Many people struggle with basic writing and grammar throughout school, and the widespread use of text messages for communication has caused some people’s skills to decline even further simply because they get so used to abbreviating words.
A technology internship. An internship may not be your idea of a “real” college class, but a lot of schools do provide college credit for internships. Traditional classes will provide you with plenty of textbook-based knowledge, but an unpaid internship can provide true on-the-job training and experience. You will learn what it’s like to actually do the job you’re studying for rather than hear a professor talk about. The best part? If you’re a first-rate intern, you might be offered a full-time job after you earn your degree. Worst case, you will meet plenty of people who work in the field. A network of contacts can come in handy, too.
College is often considered “the best years of your life,” but never forget that you are there to learn. Take advantages of all of the opportunities that are presented to you, and take advantage of vital courses for in-demand technology jobs. Your future bank account will thank you.