Once in college, a student will be faced with choosing a major course of study prior to the sophomore year. A reasonably robust college education in the liberal arts should consist of courses in English literature, writing, public speaking, higher mathematics, world history, psychology, philosophy, a major course of study, and a body of electives.
Professional programs are governed by the requirements of state law and the respective licensing professions. The college administration has little room to impact the design of the curriculum because state law or professional licensing bodies set forth the minimum requirements for obtaining a license in the area of specialization.
The professional license route requires satisfying the educational requirements specific to each profession. Examples of college preparation for professional licensure include formal programs in accounting, engineering, law, medicine, actuarial sciences, nursing, and the computer sciences. Teacher preparation is another popular option as are physical education and physical therapy.
If a student is not interested in one of the many professional collegiate courses of study, then a general college degree sequence of liberal arts is the option. A general college degree can qualify a student for a career in government, white collar positions in major companies, journalism, running a small business, general management, internet services, or the Federal Civil Service Examination.
These are just a few of the options. Becoming a commissioned officer in the military is another possibility that should never be overlooked. Increasingly, municipal police and fire departments are hiring college-trained employees from community colleges and full four-year colleges and universities.
In closing, aspirants to a college education should do some basic research before making such an extensive commitment. Students and parents should review the costs, benefits, and alternative uses of the projected college funds so that an intelligent decision can come out of this extensive deliberative process.
Many macroeconomic changes will be coming this decade. The United States population is growing at nearly a million people a year over the death rate. In addition, the baby boom generation is retiring in record numbers. Exports to foreign countries are projected to increase dramatically within just a few years.
Professionals in each of the major areas of practice will be retiring and replacements will be needed. The world population could be as high as nine billion by 2050. The sum total of all of these trends will result in increased demand for highly trained professionals at some point in the not-too-distant future.