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12 Smart Majors That Will Land You a Job After Graduation

Get a competitive advantage with the savviest, most bankable college programs right in your own backyard.



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Slippery Rock University

Health Services Administration » 
Taking advantage of western Pennsylvania’s largest professional sector doesn’t mean you have to be a doctor, nurse or technician. Hospitals and clinics also need smart, business-savvy professionals to manage their vast operations. When you think of becoming a captain of industry, Heinz and US Steel probably come to mind. But UPMC trumps them all having almost 50,000 employees. There’s big money and stability in healthcare, so if you’re aspiring to be an MBA, consider specializing in Health Services Administration at Slippery Rock University as an undergrad. Not only will it give you a competitive advantage over those future-MBAs majoring in Business Administration or Marketing, it will provide great opportunities to network with leaders in the healthcare industry; Slippery Rock’s Future Healthcare Leaders student organization is associated with the American College of Healthcare Executives. (Dads, to give the kids a true advantage with that organization, you might want to help them brush up on their chipping and putting.)

Next level: Consider a master’s degree in Healthcare Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University or a master’s degree in Public Health in Health Policy and Management from University of Pittsburgh, which will put you right in Oakland, aka Hospital Alley.


A Slippery Rock student gets busy in the lab.
 

Seton Hill University

Journalism — New Media » 
It’s the inevitable stain on every single college commencement, an abominable cliché that speakers use as an ice-breaker: At some point during the address to graduates, the keynote talking-head will deadpan, “And now you will all go on to rewarding careers—except for the English majors.” Hardy-har. But just because the print business is struggling doesn’t mean the industry is necessarily shrinking. If anything, opportunities are expanding in the new-media age. They just require journos to wear an increasingly large number of hats. For a j-school education unstained by ink, turn to Seton Hill University’s forward-thinking new media program. You’ll learn the traditional tenants of truth, accuracy and compelling leads, as well as 21-century must-haves like Web design, social media and blog writing. If you want to pay the bills as a writer in 2011, your focus shouldn’t be on A-1, but rather HTML5.

Resume builder (and/or beer money): As a journalism new media student, you’ll have a chance to earn a stipend as a staffer for The Setonian, the student-run campus newspaper.


It’s tough to beat nearby Seton Hill for campus beauty ... or new media training.
 

Washington & Jefferson College

Be a Magellan Scholar » 
You can count on a few sure things during an otherwise unpredictable college experience: Someone in the freshman dorm will call the cops on themselves, someone will try to convert the entire incoming class to their political beliefs and, last but most certain, some poor soul will use their college loan money to travel around Europe “finding themselves” for a semester. Washington & Jefferson College has a much more economical and marketable way to drive your friends crazy with envy of your jet-setting Facebook photo albums: the Magellan Project. It works like a Fulbright Scholarship—only it’s limited to W&J students, so if you develop a savvy project proposal, you’ll have a great shot at an immersive, highly marketable international experience. At this point, nearly everyone has a cakey study-abroad jaunt on their resume, but how many have explored educational opportunities for women in Gambia, studied urban health systems in Ecuador or done research at the renowned Pasteur Institute in Paris, as former Magellan scholars have?

Diversify: Thiel College partners with two top-level study abroad companies: International Studies Abroad, with programs in 19 countries; and The Center for International Studies, which offers semesters, summer trips, winter break experiences—and even foreign internships.


Washington & Jefferson Magellan Scholars show their black-and-gold pride in Egypt.
 

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