Passion vs. Pay

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Passion versus Pay, This knockdown drag out struggle between following one’s dreams and chasing maximum compensation is at the heart of the conversations between parents and students; between students and admissions counselors—and it’s a decision each of us have to make. The choices, according to Payscale.com, the global leader in compensation data are often stark and seemingly easy:

If “Pay” is your answer, choose Petroleum Engineering, which tops the list of most-lucrative majors with a starting median salary of $97,900. If “Passion” is what drives you in pursuit of your dream job, than you better be very passionate about majoring in Child and Family Studies, where you would start at a humble $29,600.

Here at NYIT—which prides itself on being a professionally oriented school–students are taking chances and going with their gut in this debate. When asked if in choosing his major whether passion or pay was of more importance Communication Arts student (Starting median salary $38,200) Michael Pasquariello responded without hesitation: “Passion, absolutely” When confronted with the figure of starting median salary he wasn’t discouraged “Comm Arts is very broad…the national average is about right for a starting salary”.

 Remarks such as those were par for the course in interviews with what could be called the “more creative” majors at NYIT. There was bound to be a difference among those studying Physics (Starting at $49,800) or Engineering (Anywhere from $51,700 to $97,900) but even in those high “Pay” majors students maintained that “Passion” is certainly part of the formula. Glen Michael Guray a Computer and Electrical Engineering student (Starting at $61,800) was adamant in response to the question of “Passion vs. Pay.”

“This is what I really like to do,” Guray said, adding that he believed that among those in his major half of them felt the way he did.

In interview after interview students at NYIT made it clear that passion trumped pay in their book although the reluctance of some students to speak would lead one to believe that the “pay” group was embarrassed to admit their primary motivation.

 Mathematics chair Dr. Timothy Loughlin who works closely with both Engineering and Pre med students confirmed that suspicion saying “More students than not are here for compensation” a circumstance that he called “unfortunate”.  John Hyde, Dean of Career Services spoke extensively not about higher and lower starting wages but on the topic of students knowing and identifying what they want out of a major and having the wherewithal to go get it. When asked about starting salary he explained a student was just as likely to come to his offices looking to further their careers regardless of major and that “passion is the biggest thing” though he too believed it “tends to be about money”.

Experts have expressed their mixed feelings on choosing a major based on starting salary, employment expert and Quicken blog editor Farmoosh Torabi responded to the dominance of engineering majors atop the list saying “it’s a tech driven world, and demand [for engineers] is only going to grow” even in the face of the economic recession.  He explains that this fact has driven a trend of more college students picking “a major that pays”. Payscale.com (from which these salary figures were pulled) conducted a survey showing that salary figures average out for many fields between 10 and 15 years of work, Dr. Al Lee the director of quantitative analysis at PayScale said “the list reorders further into people’s careers…If you looked at the pay of people 15 years out, philosophy is actually in the top 10%” overall emphasizing the importance of landing a first job and building skills going forward.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Comment

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • Passion vs. Pay

    Features

    Study Shows College Students Lack Financial Literacy, Postponing Financial Independence After Graduation

  • Passion vs. Pay

    News

    Henry C. “Hank” Foley takes over as Fourth President of NYIT

  • Passion vs. Pay

    News

    2017 NYIT Honorary Degree Recipients

  • Passion vs. Pay

    Showcase

    Clyde Doughty and Jack Kaley inducted in ECC Hall of Fame

  • Passion vs. Pay

    Features

    Professor Kevin Horton releases his first children’s book: Cee Jay and Bugsy

  • Passion vs. Pay

    Features

    13 Reasons Why: The Show That Strikes the Core

  • Passion vs. Pay

    Showcase

    The March Madness Comes to a Conclusion

  • Passion vs. Pay

    News

    April: Autism Awareness Month

  • Passion vs. Pay

    Features

    Back to the Rulebooks

  • Passion vs. Pay

    News

    From Right Field to West Wing: Tom Joannou’s Journey to Washington D. C.

Passion vs. Pay