By now you've probably seen the article at www.payscale.com that ranks the University of Chicago second among mid-western colleges and universities in terms of median starting salaries. According to the article, the average University of Chicago graduate can expect to make about $50,000 a year when he or she first graduates and over $110,000 mid-way through his or her career. With the cost of higher education rising quickly, looking at the outcomes of a school's graduates is becoming increasingly important, especially when high school students and their parents are deciding where to spend the next four years.
It's clear that the foundation that a liberal arts degree provides University of Chicago students is crucial to the success that our alumni find. What students might be struggling with, however, is how to choose between a great liberal arts education, and the more targeted programs that are found at other institutions (and one question that comes up often when meeting with prospective students and their parents is "Will my student be able to get a job with XX degree?"). The XX can stand for anything - art history, philosophy, economics, physics, math...
The answer, in short, is yes. In fact, when picking a major, students should be choosing something that they like, and that they do well at (in other words, don't decide to be an economics major just because the program is well known and well respected. Decide to be an economics major because you enjoy studying economics). One thing that recruiters say over and over again is that in most cases it doesn't matter what a student has majored in, as long as he or she can think on his or her feet and learn quickly. That's why places like Google look to hire just as many English and History Majors, as they do people with backgrounds in IT.
Finally, CAPS and the College know that making the most of a liberal arts degree is important to you, and that's why the past few years have resulted in the Chicago Careers in...Programs. These are programs that supplement the liberal arts curriculum at the University of Chicago - so you get the best of both worlds - and provide targeted workshops and mentoring.
Chicago Careers in Business, Chicago Careers in Law, Chicago Careers in Health Professions and Chicago Careers in Journalism all give students the resources they need to excel in these fields, without sacrificing the intellectual debate and growth that takes place in a core class that might be largely theoretical.
For more information about any of these programs, call CAPS at (773) 702 - 7040 and ask to meet with the program director. Or, post your questions here.