Monday, August 18, 2008

Tropical Storm Fay

For the first time since living in Florida, it looks like I might actually experience a tropical storm--Fay. Most schools are closed tomorrow (and some for Wednesday already), Wycliffe's office is closed, store marquees are saying "Stay Away Fay," and all the talk is either about Fay or reminiscing about previous storms.

The damage shouldn't be too bad, but we might be holed up at our house for a while. Thankfully if we get bored playing games with each other, we can always go next door and hang out with the eight kids there.

Thanks to all those for praying for us--we'll try to keep you posted through this blog.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Does a Degree Matter?

I was talking with a colleague today about college degrees. Do the degrees do anything for us? Most of the people I graduated with are working in something completely outside of their major(s). I'm sure much of the same is true for others as well. For the role in which I'm currently serving, I probably "should" have majored in business administration. Instead I was a social studies major--with an elementary teaching certificate to boot. Yet I would say that my college education prepared me extremely well for this role.

Of course, the value is not as much in the degree itself and even less so what your major was (with a few exceptions), but more so in the college experience as a whole (the degree is only a representation of that experience). When I got home tonight, I read an interesting article from Crown Ministries on this very topic. A couple pull-out quotes, if you don't have time to read the whole article:

On average, every dollar that is put toward education translates into $34.85 earned income over the individual's lifetime, an investment yield any broker would envy.


According to Michael Hampton at Western Oregon University, "Unless you are going to be an engineer, architect, teacher, or lawyer, the label on your degree does not matter. The degree is a check-mark (as opposed to the focus) in most job requirements. Many job ads will state: 'Business, Communications or other degree required.' Most folks have the 'other.' "

Earning your degree goes well past the finances. According to Katherine Hansen, with Quintessential Careers, your degree pays dividends in other areas, including:
* longer life-spans,
* greater economic stability and security,
* greater job satisfaction,
* less dependence on government assistance,
* greater participation in leisure and artistic activities,
* greater community service and leadership, and
* more self-confidence.