Complete Guide to All the Benefits of Having an Associates Degree
40% of Americans have an associates degree.
And while an associates degree isn’t as “high-ranking” as a bachelors degree, having one still puts you at an advantage over millions of other Americans who haven’t attended college or university at all.
If you’re debating whether or not to go for the two-year route, there are many benefits of having an associates degree.
In this article, we’ll talk about a few of them, and why you should consider getting one yourself.
Read on for more information about obtaining a two-year associate degree, and how it could possibly change your life for the better.
An Associates Degree is Generally Cheaper
Depending on where you get an associates degree, it is generally cheaper than getting a bachelors degree by a landslide. This is especially the case if you choose to get your associates degree at a community college.
Community colleges charge very little compared to four-year universities, both state and private. Therefore, you can get a comparable two-year education to your peers in these universities without the price tag.
With student loan debt reaching what many call a crisis point, you’ll actually be able to afford your degree. At a community college, you can logistically pay for your associates degree with a part or full-time job. This will leave you without loans to repay in the future. And anyone with major student loans can tell you that they can have an impact on your life long after you’ve graduated.
Of course, you can still get an associates degree at a four-year university, but this is still cheaper than getting a bachelors degree.
It Opens You Up for Jobs Immediately
After you receive your associates degree, you’re ready to work in a multitude of roles. Many of these jobs you can work once you’ve gained your degree are in the medical field. Although you won’t be a doctor or able to make decisions on your own, you’ll still be able to work in laboratories, with X-rays and a wide variety of other roles.
You can also work assisting physical therapists, veterinarians and a host of other opportunities. You’ll also be able to work as a medical administrative assistant and other clerical roles within a hospital or private clinic.
This makes an associates degree perfect for people with an interest in this field.
Ultimate Medical Academy lists several jobs you can get immediately after graduating in the medical field. Most of these jobs are not just stable, but also pay relatively well.
Because of this, you’ll be able to pay off your student loans, if you have any. You won’t be saddled with a lifetime of debt, and you’ll have highly transferrable skills.
An Associates Degree Gives You the Ability to Have a Career While Still Continuing Your Education
Don’t want to stop at an associates degree? Great! The stars are the limit once you’ve gotten your associates degree, and some degree holders go on to become dentists, doctors, and lawyers.
The great thing about an associates degree is that you’re already set up for a job with a lot of growth potential. You can continue this job while you’re going to school for a longer term goal. If you’re interested in medicine, for instance, you can begin working in medicine immediately as you continue your education.
This gives you excellent hands-on experience during the rest of your schooling and helps you finance your studies.
Many people go from a high school diploma straight to a bachelors degree. While there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s out of the question financially for many people. And if you’re going for your bachelors, your only qualification will be your high school diploma.
With an associates, this gives you an extra qualification for a higher paying job while you’re finishing school.
An Associates Degree Gives You a Strong Foundation
If you wish to pursue a bachelors degree or a more advanced degree, an associates will give you a strong foundation. You’ll already have a taste of college life and how to manage your studies. Once you’ve shown you can be successful doing that, you’ll find that getting a higher degree is much easier.
With a strong foundation, you can proceed confidently in the direction of your dreams.
Low Unemployment Rates
Those who secure an associates degree have a lower unemployment rate than those who only have a high school diploma. This ensures that you have a career ahead of you that you’ll be able to use for the rest of your life.
Your associate’s degree sets you up for immediate, and lifelong, success.
It Opens Doors
Many people who graduated from high school don’t have the grades to get into a four-year university right away. This may be because of a variety of factors that have influenced their lives. This isn’t something to be ashamed of, and in fact, if you fall into this category, you can take it as an opportunity.
An associates degree gives you an almost second chance to start again when it comes to paving the way to your dream school. If you couldn’t get in the first time, you can prove your worth with an associates degree from a reputable institution.
Once you have that two-year degree, with solid grades and a great track record, you can go back to the school that rejected you and let them know you’re actually a great student.
Many people are not able to get into their first choice institution on their high school merits alone. This isn’t anything to be ashamed of. Instead, use your associate’s degree as a stepping stone for your dreams.
If you can dream it, you can find a way to do it.
It Provides a Good Pause Point
You may think all you want is an associates degree and you’re not interested in further education. That’s totally fine and a respectable decision.
But, an associates degree lets you keep your options open. You never know if later you’ll want to get a bachelors degree, and perhaps go even further.
With an associates degree, you can demonstrate immediately that you’re a great student. You can also show that you have the drive to stick to a program of study, which is important for schools when they consider transfer students for admission.
Depending on where you transfer, the process of moving credits back and forth can be a bit tricky. While an associates degree doesn’t guarantee that all of your classes will transfer to a new school, it does guarantee a good portion of them will. (This is unless you choose to study something completely different than your associate’s degree. In that case, you may find yourself having to take many lower-level courses, but that’s okay if that’s what you truly want!)
Because of this, an associates degree is a great place for a bookmark in your higher education. You may decide to come back to it later, but you may also decide not to. Either way, it puts you in a great position.
It Could Open the Door for a Paid Higher Diploma
If you get your associates degree in a field where there is a shortage of workers, you might find that a future employer will pay for further degrees. While we can’t this will be the case, it does happen more often than you think.
For instance, if you get a degree in a medical field where you’ll go further with a bachelors, you may find that once you secure a job with an associates, your employer will pay for you to continue your education.
As we’ve previously established, higher education is incredibly expensive. But if you can work out a way to pay for only a small amount of your education, you’ll be ahead of most everyone else who has a higher level degree.
Without student loans to hold you back, you’ll have a lot more freedom and opportunities in the long run.
The Benefits of Having an Associates Degree
As you can see, the benefits of having an associates degree are vast. Not only will it help you secure a career that can have exponential growth (and great growth potential), it also puts you in a great position for the rest of your career or schooling.
Having an associates degree is extremely valuable, and something you won’t ever regret completing. It is truly an investment into you, and your family’s, future.
If you’re considering an associates degree as part of a career change, click here to read about what you should know before you decide to take the plunge.