Maximizing educational ROI in Florida

Maximizing educational ROI in Florida 

Excerpt: As tuition rates and debt levels continue to rise, Florida colleges and universities need to place a greater emphasis on providing learning opportunities outside the classroom for students to prepare them for a competitive job market. 

That was the primary takeaway from the latest survey of the Florida Influencers, a group of the state’s leading voices. Asked to rank a variety of proposals to improve higher education in Florida, a plurality (44 percent) said increasing post-secondary vocational training should be the top priority for state officials. 

“Our expensive educational system keeps producing more college graduates with thousands of dollars in student loans while ignoring a growing need in the business community for skilled, vocational education graduates,” said Brian Keeley, the president and CEO of Baptist Health South Florida.

Bottom Line: One of the most consistent messages I shared during the recession was to major in what you wanted a career in and to use education for very specific purposes. I argued that college had become too expensive to simply get a degree and try to figure it out afterwards. At one point ten years ago, more than 50% of college grads never worked in a career that was related to their degree. Ten years later, with the increased costs of college education combined with shortages of skilled professionals in many of the trades – especially in Florida, it’s even more important to place emphasis on career path and use education accordingly.  

Here are five different professions/degree fields: 

  • Attorney, Business degree, Electrician, Liberal Arts degree, Metal worker 

Here are five different average starting salaries for those fields - $44k, $46k, $50k, $54k, $57k  

You’ll notice that the range is only $13,000 between those categories but the cost of the education is vastly different. For example: 

  • Average cost to become an attorney: $189,000 
  • Average cost to become an electrician: $5,000

Now here’s the starting salaries matched up to those fields: 

  • Liberal Arts degree - $44,000 
  • Metal worker - $46,000 
  • Business degree - $50,000 
  • Electrician - $54,000 
  • Attorney - $57,000

The electrician earns more than all fields but the attorney while having a cost of education that’s nearly $50,000 cheaper than the degree fields and they’re able to begin their careers years earlier than liberal arts and business degree recipients. It’s just an example to illustrate a point but it’s one that’s increasingly important. 

Sponsored Content

Sponsored Content