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Masters: Harvard, Columbia, Vanderbilt---Let's talk money-not the cost but what you expect to make!

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So I was wondering what money people expect to make after finishing a degree from one of the schools above. I know this will vary widely from field to field and geographical locations etc..so let's not get into that debate.


Basically, let's keep it to this, and I'll fill mine in to start:


What is your intended major: Masters in Private School Leadership.

What jobs does it open for you immediately after graduation: Dean of Students, Assistant Principal, College Admission Counselor, Assistant Head of School for (insert department name here).

Do you expect to work in the pvt or public sector: I will only be eligible to work for a private or charter school.

What is THE job you want to go for right out of college: Work as an assistant to the principal or head of school or a department head at a boarding school on the East Coast (ideally one that has an equestrian program).

What salary do you expect your dream job to have: I have NO idea but I would expect to start anywhere in the $55,000-$65,000 range if I have a Masters from a competitive school with ~ten years of experience in the industry.

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Of course, because this is what education is all about.


Well... on the OP's defense, we all get into graduate school with different interests and motivations. And making money is a valid one. It may not be your (or my, for that matter) favourite one but I guess we do have to accept that some people are in it to get a bigger paycheque...


... which sort of begs the question, though...


... if you really area after teh monie$$$... why are you even going to graduate school in Education? maybe something more business-like would generate a bigger payout in the end. 

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Oh sheesh, people interested in education aren't required to take a vow of poverty to indicate their purity. We don't do ourselves or the field broadly any favors by pretending that we're somehow exempt from the kinds of cost-benefit analyses that most adults have to do when considering a career trajectory. Especially considering the cost to attend the schools that the OP name checks, it would be crazy NOT to consider the expected salary range when you're done.


Were I to go back into the field after receiving my masters, I'd be able to make anywhere from $500-$5,000 more per year than I could have with my BA and teaching certificate, depending on the district. Even though I had funding, just the opportunity cost for not working for two years works out to be around $62,000--a pretty absurd investment based on the salary return, and completely crazy if I were actually paying the $100,000ish tuition. Continuing on to the PhD, as I plan to do, extends the ceiling on my future salary significantly, but there's still a big range, depending on how productive a scholar I turn out to be. 

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Of course, because this is what education is all about.


You're really an idiot who has taken this topic in a direction which it was completely not intended for. But since life is sometimes (thankfully not frequently) about dealing with idiots like you, I must engage the topic also.


So, before you go around pointing fingers off your high mule, let me provide you some perspective. I left a robust career in private equity where I managed a $100 million portfolio to set up businesses for children with autism who had no future in terms of financial independence i.e. they could not hope to work even the simplest of jobs where they had to interact with other people. That entailed taking a salary that was less than my annual bonus used to be. Then, I went overseas and stayed in deplorable conditions for four years, spending my life savings setting up a non-profit organization that is today the first teacher-training institute for teachers who teach children with special needs. Upon my return, I still make less than what I used to make. 


Unlike you, today I am a very happy person who does not troll internet boards looking to pick fights or to attack people. Because I did my undergrad in finance and really wanted to hone and extend my vision for education, I decided to apply to the top three education schools in the nation. I am extremely fortunate that people much more qualified to examine and judge others than you are have validated my life's journey and mission and I have been accepted to 2/3 of these programs with over 50% scholarship in both and every expectation to be invited to attend the third within a few days.


While I have an unequivocal commitment to education, unlike you, I am also not an idiot. I am very aware of the financial impact my choices (will) have on my life. Just like there are many idiots (like I'm positive you are) who have children without planning for them, I do not plan on having any till I can fully support them. The fact that I clarified that I have no idea how much money I'll be making (if any more) should've been enough to tell you this is not why I am going for my masters. Moreover, even a dunce like you should be able to see that I am going to quit a job with $55k+benefits, and go spend $65k and a year of my life for a total opportunity cost of at least $120,000 with expected returns of an increased $5,000/year. Even if that works out, and not factoring for interest or inflation, it will take me at least 24 years before I will "recoup" the investment I make in my education. But financial literacy, knowledge and planning is a crucial practice in life. Because I plan these things ahead, which is what I was hoping to do rather than engage a neanderthal like you, I have been blessed to never question the choices that I made and am not financially miserable like a lot of people passionate about low-paying professions but burnt out by their real-life implications.


So, anyway, back to the original question...what do you expect to do after graduate school and what is its earning potential?

Edited by OCD or Perfection?
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Let me ask you, just what is your "vision for education?" Is it sending a bunch of rich Americans overseas to teach all the poor people how to educate their children, even in their oh so deplorable conditions? Does it have to do with further managerializing and bureaucratizing education with your "crucial" financial skills? Is it further driving the field away from any semblance of soul or philosophical seriousness by conceptualizing it as an "investment" and teaching others to do the same, presumably so that they can compete in the ubiquitous "competitive global economy?" What a shocker that you have been embraced by the bastions of neoliberal evil that push these types of agendas in the US. Congratulations.


You may be right that I can come off as cynical or even angry, but it is, at least in this case, because people like you, who have just bought wholesale and without question the dominant discourse about education, have hijacked a field that I care about.

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