By the time they choose their course, some prospective university students will know exactly where they’re headed. They have their career path mapped out ahead of them, from their first day at uni to ten, fifteen or even twenty years in the future.
If you are not one of these people, this article is for you.
Sometimes, when it comes to applying for uni, you’ll have no idea where you’re headed career-wise – and that’s okay! You have three years, possibly more, to decide.
But, in the meantime, you probably want to keep your options open, and so an important factor in your choice of degree might well be flexibility – the number of different directions it can take you in. Here are a few examples of degrees that will leave you with plenty of choice come graduation!
When it comes to preparing yourself for a variety of different businesses, literally studying businesses and how they operate is rarely going to let you down! Though it has had a reputation in the past as a ‘soft’ subject, a lot of business schools nowadays are very well-respected and can open plenty of doors for you. A thorough understanding of finance and strategy is a valuable boon to almost any company, no matter its structure or specialism.
In a lot of ways, this is only one step away from business. Economics as a subject has a ‘harder’ edge to it, and tends to attract and mould more mathematical minds, which is invaluable if you think a systematic, data-oriented job is your style.
It also sets you up well for advancement: the higher your position in a company, the more of its money rests with you, and so those with a thorough understanding of cash will be at a significant advantage when it comes to choosing the next top dogs.
This encompasses chemistry, physics, engineering, and sometimes mathematics and biology. These subjects are highly regarded simply because, fairly or otherwise, they are seen as some of the most difficult, and excelling in them marks you out as a very, very bright spark.
Much like economics, a degree in these subjects is also seen as an indication of a very rigorous, technical mind, always a valuable quality to have. The hard sciences have the additional advantage of setting you up especially well for further academia – research scientists are among the best-respected of all academics, and some of the best-paid, too!
History and English Literature
After all you may have heard about technical intelligence and ‘hardness’ of subjects, you might be surprised to see these two here, but they are still very flexible because they demonstrate different but equally valued skillsets.
Depending on who you ask, one of these subjects is usually considered the ‘purest’ humanity, in the same way that maths is the ‘purest’ science; they both improve your critical thinking, teach you how to assemble and structure an argument, and set you up with superb writing skills, which will give your CVs and cover letters that extra edge as well as being useful in its own right.
Employers tend to see people with these degrees as excellent all-rounders, well suited to almost any position.
We live in a global age, and the ability to do business in multiple countries is truly invaluable. Speaking and understanding a second language to degree level, then, makes you an even more attractive candidate! Languages like Japanese, Mandarin and Russian can connect you with especially valuable business partners abroad, but honestly there are no bad foreign languages to study (okay, maybe Esperanto).
Indeed, if you truly have a passion for your second tongue, it can open up a whole second job market overseas for you to explore!
It’s not just for lawyers! Law degrees are valued for one simple reason: they are extremely hard to excel in. Law is rightly considered one of the most challenging degrees around, up there with things like medicine, and, if you can push through and emerge with a strong qualification at the end of it, you have demonstrated that you are a truly exceptional candidate.
Just seeing the word “Law” on a CV will endear you to prospective employers immediately.
So, there you have it. If you’re worried about having to decide your future straight out of A levels, there’s no need to worry just yet – there’s no shortage of options for the undecided.