1. Gain in-depth knowledge and answer unanswered questions.
A graduate education is unlike any other journey. It is the pursuit of an intellectual passion while acquiring in-depth professional expertise and greater career opportunities. The benefits of a graduate degree also improve your research, writing and analyzing skills. This all contributes to you becoming a more skillful problem solver and to tackling complex projects. By earning a graduate degree, you will continue to expand upon your expertise and knowledge, preparing you for lifelong learning.
2. Set yourself apart from the rest of the workforce.
In today’s increasingly competitive job market, the benefits of a master’s degree or Ph.D. in science can differentiate you in the market. You will learn to use critical thinking and innovation to solve problems. These skills are much sought after and really make a Ph.D. graduate, and even a master’s graduate, stand out from other potential employees.
3. Advance more quickly in your career.
Earning a master’s degree helps you gain specialized knowledge to advance in your field. A graduate degree shows you are committed to enhancing your expertise and credibility. Focus on a special field of study within science helps you become more competitive in the job market.
A graduate degree can make it easier to transition into more senior positions, such as management and leadership. Many organizations are seeking more educated employees. When asked why they are hiring more employees with college degrees for positions previously held by those with high school degrees, 61% of employers said the skills required for their positions have evolved, requiring a higher base level of education. In recent years, with many companies looking to hire people with graduate degrees.
4. Enhance your earning potential.
By earning a graduate degree, you can significantly increase your income. A recent report from the Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce details how much more you can earn with an advanced degree: Across all occupations, those with a master’s degree typically earn about $2.7 million over their lifetime (about $66,800 a year or $32 per hour). Lifetime earnings increase substantially again for those with doctoral and professional degrees: Doctoral degree holders have lifetime earnings of $3.3 million ($81,300 per year; $39 per hour) while those with professional degrees (like doctors and lawyers) have the highest earnings, making over $3.6 million over the course of a lifetime ($91,200 per year; $44 per hour). That makes for a 61% earnings increase (nearly $1.4 million) when compared to bachelor’s degree holders.
While earning a bachelor’s degree is an excellent start to establish your career, advanced degrees make you a more competitive job candidate. That's why more people have been going back to school to earn a master's or Ph.D. of their own: The U.S. Census Bureau reports that from 2011 to 2021, the number of people age 25 and over with a master’s degree rose to 24.1 million, while doctoral degree holders rose to 4.7 million. Those are increases of 50.2% and 54.5%, respectively.