When it comes to achieving your professional dreams, the right education and training can form the foundations for future success.
It can help you to get the job you've always wanted, allow you to move up the career ladder, or give you a chance to continue your professional development. An undergraduate qualification is an important stepping stone but doing a Masters can really help you to get where you want to be.
If you want to take a deep dive into a particular subject or topic, a taught or research Masters is a great option. It can be a great first step towards carving out a career in a niche industry or a specialised field of study. It's one way to set the agenda for where you want your career to go.
Sometimes, you also need to pursue further education to qualify for your chosen profession. Maybe you studied Applied Maths or Computer Systems with an aim of ultimately getting into computing. If so, a Software Engineering MSc could be an obvious next step when you graduate.
If you've only just graduated, you might need to work in your chosen industry for a while to get a clearer picture of what your dream job actually is. Once you work that out, you can then seek out a Masters that would help you to qualify for that position.
An undergraduate degree is now seen as an entry level qualification by many employers as educational standards in the workforce continue to rise. According to a recent CareerBuilder survey, over a third of employers have raised the educational requirements for jobs over the last five years.
Doing a Masters can give you a competitive edge when it comes to getting the job that you really want. Going further with your education significantly increases your employability, according to a recent survey by the Higher Education Authority. It found that 75 percent of honours graduates in Ireland were in full-time employment. However, that figure rose to 86 percent for people with a taught postgraduate and 91 percent of research postgraduates.
There's also the fact that 10 percent of employers consider postgraduate qualifications more important than work experience, according to GradIreland‘s Graduate Salary & Graduate Recruitment Survey 2015.
Often, what you thought was your dream course when you first applied for college doesn't live up to your expectations. A recent study found that one in three students wish they had chosen a different undergraduate course. Conversion courses like this Master of Art in Psychology offer you a chance to move into a different discipline altogether.
Sometimes, the latest technology or industry developments can open up fresh new career paths to explore. Learning new systems or skills on the job is one thing but a Masters in a developing discipline can establish your qualifications for potential employers.
That's where a Masters like the Art and Technology MSc/MA come in, as they allow you to study and understand how emerging technologies are driving art and culture today. It can help art professionals to stay relevant and to qualify for potential employment opportunities in these developing sectors.
Finding your dream career can sometimes mean looking at what's happening in the economy and judging which trends or patterns are important. Specialisation can help graduates to build on their undergraduate course with a Masters designed to help them secure employment in a growing industry.
Ireland is second only to Germany when it comes to medical device exports. Medical devices make up 10 percent of the country's exports so it's a growing sector that's full of potential career opportunities.
University of Limerick offers a Biomedical Device Materials (MSc) that gives science, engineering and technology graduates a competitive edge if they want to pursue a career in this popular industry.
Your dream job inevitably involves something that you're passionate about but you also want to be well remunerated for your work. It's nice to be rewarded for your efforts.
Doing a postgraduate degree helps you to earn a higher salary too. According to a recent report, 47 percent of those with a honours bachelor degree were earning €25,000 or less. That's compared to 30 percent with a research Masters degree and 30 percent with a taught Masters. However, 31 percent of doctorate graduates report earning over €45,000 – which is a big jump.
Another study by CareerBliss found that the likes of business managers, web designers, database administrators and managing partners with a Masters degree earned over 20 percent more than peers who only had an undergraduate degree. Not only can a postgrad help you to pursue the job of your dreams but it can also ensure that you'll be on a good wage when you get it.
At UL, our career experts help potential postgraduate students make their choices every year.
Download our ultimate guide. It will help you with decision-making techniques, resources and contains real advice from UL’s past postgraduates and career experts.