One simple truth of the employment market is the proportional relationship between education level and earning power. Today, more so than ever before, the professional challenges and rewards available to you are factored at the outset: if you don't have a college degree, you're shut out. But, with the latest advantages offered by online college degrees, it's possible to efficiently and effectively earn a degree from an online school, that puts you in contention for a successful career in the exciting industry of your choice.
Today's society is increasingly mobile. Of course, you don't need an online article to tell you that. You may be reading this at school, at your desk, but also on your laptop, from anywhere there's wi-fi, or on your PDA. New technologies have a habit of arriving before society knows what to do with them. Journalists and pundits fret; they make grand-sounding statements about not rushing into anything and disrupting the status quo.
But then we adapt. Just like that - if the new technology makes things easier, it becomes a part of our lives. And the institutional parts of our culture, while initially resistant, catch up.
In the case of online education - which, thanks to technology, can be as effective as traditional classroom learning - some key things have taken place, such that going to college online has become a great option for many students. In fact, Eduventures, an objective consulting firm, projects that by 2008, one in 10 college students will be enrolled in an online degree program.
If a student decides to earn her degree or certificate online, she joins the quickly growing number of students around the nation and world who are going to online colleges and universities, advancing their education while they work. But the advantages she has as an online student are not just about benefiting from the newest learning and mobile technologies - it's also about the money.
The economic benefit enjoyed by online students has two main aspects. The first has to do with money saved in the near term: Colleges develop and offer online programs at non-inflated rates because of the low overheads. An online Nursing program, for instance, or an online Psychology degree program, has no room and board - and not even a traditional classroom is needed.
The second aspect is about money earned in the long term. Over the course of their working careers, the incomes of college grads in the United States average well over $400,000 more than high school graduates.
Between the monetary benefits, the technological advantages, and the highly personal learning, online learning offers students an opportunity that's impossible to ignore.
It's only going to grow from here. Our larger society has begun to recognize why online learning appeals to people, and as traditional schools take increasing advantage of the online world, the opportunities for students grow bigger and more exciting.
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