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What job can you get with a degree in Economics?


Kurt Codean

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Hey everyone. I was thinking about posting this in the money section but chose the personal advice section instead. I've got a bachelor's and Master's degree in Economics from one of my State Universities. I've been out of school for at least 12 years now and currently I am working as a dishwasher in Boston Market. Before hat I had a series of short lasting jobs, some in retail, shipping and receiving, and data entry. I've only had one job that would be considered working in the financial field, but my main function was being the personal assistant for the CEO and didn't gain any financial experience. So my problem now is I have these degrees but no real world experience in any field where economics might be useful, such as finance. I seem to get discouraged now from looking for a job where I can utilize my degree because when I browse job ads most financial companies require at least 2 years of experience and also advanced knowledge of MIcrosoft Excel. I have neither of those. Also I am 36 years old so I feel like I am getting pretty old and it will be harder to land a job if you have to compete with new grads in their 20's. I also have a lot of anxiety because if I do get an interview i anticipate questions like what have you been doing for the past few years? or Why did you work at these places (Boston Market, BJ's Wholesale Club, UPS, and a few temp jobs).? I don't know how to explain why I'm working in a restaurant when I have a college degree. I hate when people ask me about it, and when they find out I have college degrees they always say well what are you doing here? It's pretty depressing because I don't have a real answer for that. I don't know how to explain it to people. I definitely feel like I should be doing something more lucrative than working in Boston Market, but for the above reasons I seem to have psychological problems when it comes to looking for jobs that require a degree in Economics. To be honest there aren't many things you can do with Economics alone. Accounting would of been a better field to study because there are a lot of jobs for accountants/book keepers, but Account and Economics are almost completely different fields. I would have to take some classes at least to learn how to do book keeping. Bottom line is I can't support myself on my current job's income, but I seem to be very discouraged for finding a job where Economics can be useful. I also have school loans that need to be payed off so I have to find a better job soon. Does anybody have any advice for what I could say to an interviewer if they ask me about my strange work history? Am I to old to get an entry-level position in a financial field? What kind of job can I get with an Economics degree? I would like to eventually  to find a job that makes use of my degrees because otherwise I would feel like all that time I spent in school was a total waste. I've thought about becoming a teacher, but I don't know if I would like teaching kids at any level of school, but if that is the only job I could get I would probably go for it. I would have to get a teaching degree or certificate to be a teacher though. 

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My first husband had a degree in economics which he proclaimed as fairly useless. I'm sure that isn't really the case, but he did not end up with a career associated with his education.

It seems like many of my friends end up doing something far from what they plan. The degree is still attractive on their resumes, even if it is unrelated to the field.

Teaching would be rewarding if it's something that appeals to you. Whatever you decide, you will not have wasted those years. Education is always something of value and completing any degree is a great accomplishment.

Take it from me, college dropout ashamed to say. Dropped classes with straight A's, such a fool!

 

 

 

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If you have a Masters from a State school I think you should look into getting a job teaching at a community college. Or depending on which State school wrote your degree, a different state school. Pass on this knowledge that you have of Economics. And meet young co-eds, too? Get one of those jackets with the patches on the elbows. It should be clear by this point that all the experience I have of higher education and professors comes from movies.

But! I am being serious. I was once told (no idea if it's true) that all that is required to teach higher education is to have one degree higher than what your students are trying to earn. No teaching degree necessary. You have a Masters. So shouldn't you be able to teach at a 2 year or 4 year institution?

Or, I guess, I dunno, uh, Economics, um.... Ponzi Scheme?

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Also! I would like to add -- 36!! You're in your prime, my friend. Old enough to be done with the extreme stupidity that the young possess yet young enough to still kick the shit outta anyone older than you (not that I'm condoning violence). You are at your peak! Both mentally and physically! Sharp, smart, quick and adaptable. A world conquering machine.... That has also Mastered (with an M) Economics. You have a diploma from a State institution to prove it. 

Now all you gotta do is go out there and take what's yours. Fuck anyone who looks at you funny. Strength attracts strength. Project confidence. You know what you know and you know that. Get a job at a bank. Work hard. Get promoted. Run the bank.

Or do the teaching thing suggested above.

But 36 is NOT old. Cuz if it is a lot of us are in trouble.

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2earls,

Hi did I hear a degree in Economics?? Well let me see I can think of one job and that would be the President of the U.S.A. now there's a job for some one with an Economics degree. By the way a lot of people go on to other careers that aren't closely related to the degree they get in college.  Just take a look at our history. By the way an Economics degree is nothing to scoff  at. Its very much admired.  

alley   

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Dear Codean212,

Forgive me as I only read your thread a moment ago and now I see the nature and the importance of this thread . I feel that if you have succeeded in an Economics degree than all the rest is small potatoes. I would like to see a list of the things in your life that make a difference to you,such as kids ,animals ,food ,makeup, cars, law, t.v. shows that interest you .  Try and get a list in order and I will look it over and see what I can come up with. Let it be told that people would come to me in College and ask me such questions as this and I did help a few work it out. Be as honest as you can and remember this is something you like and no one else just YOU!

alley  

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Dear Alley, 

        Thanks for the offer about the list, I think I will take you up on that and send you a pm about it. Although right now I'm kind of thinking about the things in life that make a difference to me and right off the bat I'm thinking Kode@n, Tr@madol, Lex@pro, and Kl0n0pin. I know that is not what you are looking for but all jokes aside these meds seem to be running my life right now. I suppose I could come up with real things other than meds that make a difference, like family, relationships, and other stuff. I will try to do a more detailed list and pm you with it. Also thanks for the compliments for the value of the economics, but truthfully I am going to have go along with 2earls on this. 2earls I believe your first husband was right in proclaiming that "economics is a fairly useless degree". There is no real job that specifically is meant for a person with a degree in Economics. It's in the same boat as other Liberal Arts majors which have very little use in the real world. A better major for working in Finance would have been Accounting or Business Administration. Economics is just a broad and general topic with not much practical use. I do agree with you however that having a degree on your resume does look attractive, no matter what kind of degree it is. Also I agree with you and Two about pursuing teaching as a potential career. One of the things that I found out about teaching is that you can get student loan forgiveness if you become a teacher in your city or state. By the way Two I think although I have a couple of degrees I would have to get a special teaching certificate first before I can become a teacher. I've been looking into that and getting some teaching lessons is a requirement, but i don't think it takes that long if you already have a degree. 

       Two buddy, I like what you said about 36 being a prime age. I totally get what you are saying, at this age you are definitely not a kid, and you are not a feeble old man who can't defend themself. It's not that I am a violent person, I usually try to avoid violence as best I can, but you are right this is the age when you can consider yourself a man and not take any $hit from anybody. I didn't feel this way in my 20's, when I was in my 20's I still felt kind of like a kid, or a teenager. Now I feel like there is no Authority above me other than God himself. There is of course police authority, but that is only troubling if you are a criminal. If you are a decent citizen then there is no reason to fear police. The police work for you because your taxes pay their salaries. Reading your post made me feel better. I like what you wrote there. That was some good solid advice. You're absolutely right that if you want success then you have to project confidence in what you are doing and gain the support and admiration of the people around you. I had a lot of anxiety not long ago thinking about what I was going to do with my life, but now I generally don't spend too much time worrying about problems which can't be solved in a day anyway. If you spend all your time worrying then you are missing out on the point of life which is to have as much fun as possible. It is good to have these degrees because even though I'm not using them now, they may come in handy in the future. It's kind of a good feeling that you completed just about the highest level of education there is in this country, outside of being a doctor or lawyer. Not many people can pull a fast one on you when you reached a high level of education, only those that have a slightly higher level might be able to. I think teaching is a respectable position and would be good because you can get tenure I suppose.

 Thanks for your responses everyone, I really feel better after reading them all. 

 

PS. 2earls there is no shame in being a college drop out. I have friends that I went to college with who dropped out and I'm still friends with them, I don't treat them any differently than I would someone who graduated. In fact some of them are doing better than I am right now and I envy them. I think going to college is somewhat of an accomplishment even if you didn't graduate. One of my old high school teachers told the class once that the people you meet in College will be the friends you keep for the rest of your life. This seems to be true since most of my friends are the ones that went to the same college as me. Some of them graduated and some didn't but that doesn't seem to make any difference to me, I am just as friendly with all of them just because we went to the same school together at some point.  

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Lol and thanks @codean212. I just feel like it was a wasted opportunity but it just wasn't the right time for me.

I've been an avid reader my whole life and feel it's served me well as far as appearing to be educated. It's the experience and friendships that you allude to that are what I missed out on. Having an Alma Mater and all that.

Good luck with your journey and if you remember what you said about enjoying life being the ultimate goal, you can never fail. The best job or highest degree doesn't mean a thing if you aren't having fun!

 

 

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Lol and thanks @codean212. I just feel like it was a wasted opportunity but it just wasn't the right time for me.

I've been an avid reader my whole life and feel it's served me well as far as appearing to be educated. It's the experience and friendships that you allude to that are what I missed out on. Having an Alma Mater and all that.

Good luck with your journey and if you remember what you said about enjoying life being the ultimate goal, you can never fail. The best job or highest degree doesn't mean a thing if you aren't having fun!

 

 

If you went to college but didn't graduate you still could of made some friends there and had some experiences. I'm not sure how many semesters you completed but having some college is still better than no college. But like you said having the best job or highest degree doesn't mean squat if you aren't enjoying your life. You don't need a college degree to enjoy life. That's great that you are an avid reader, Reading is a sign of high intelligence in my opinion. A lot of people watch too much tv these days and don't read much. I think reading is like exercise for your mind. Also reading stuff that you are interested in will probably stay with you longer than taking a class on a subject where you study enough just to pass. There are a lot of classes that I took where I  barely remember what was studied. I took all the math classes(calculus 1 2 and 3) but math and science were somewhat difficult for me to retain in my memory. If I ever needed to use that stuff I would have to probably go through the same material again to try and refresh my memory. 

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