Can You Dual Degree?

Can You Dual Degree?

It's not for the weak-hearted.
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Dual degrees, otherwise known as combined, conjoint, or joint degree programs, are more common in other countries than in America. However, that does not mean that they do not exist in the United State. In the past recent years, many students have been showing an interest and demand for joint degree programs. The allure of an earlier graduation and getting two degrees, too strong to ignore for aspiring academics.

However, what is a dual degree?

A dual degree is formed from the collaboration of two academic institutes who have agreed on an articulation program which a student would abide with in order to move from one school to another. Typically, the two degrees can either belong to the same field or be from two completely different areas; all that matters is that they are complimentary to one another. A dual degree, after all, is for those who desire an edge in this competitive professional world.

Note: It is completely different from double majoring because a dual degree has the student alternate between two institutions who are specialized in only one field of the two he or she are pursuing.

So is a dual degree for you?

Pros:

You get to get two degrees. In today’s competitive job market, two degrees can give you a solid advantage over others. The more complimentary they are to your desired career field, the better.

It saves you time. As a joint degree student, myself, I can personally speak for biology majors as an example. Typically, pursuing a general biology major means you will be aiming to go straight into graduate or medical school to further your career and specialize in something. Graduating as just a general major with no specialization in anything, automatically demands a few more extra years of schooling in order to seem more suitable and marketable in the professional field you are aiming for. Those who want to do lab or maybe even work in forensics, for example, will have to take a few more classes to be better job candidates. A dual degree gives you specialization.

You jump into your field faster. With a dual degree, your general education and prerequisite classes are either finished in your first year and-a-half of your college career, enabling you a quicker start into more advanced studies that dabble in actual professional-related work.

It gives you flexibility, skill-set wise. By pursuing a dual degree, you can have an alternate set of skill sets to fall back on just in case the end goal isn’t as tangible as you would hope it to be. With a joint degree, you can eventually just choose one to focus in if the other drifts from your spectrum of interests.

Cons:

The workload is unforgiving. If you want to pursue a dual degree, you have to be very disciplined or, at the very least, be willing to become self-disciplined. A dual degree means more classes in a shorter amount of time, it can get stressful, you can slack – it takes a special kind of mindset to be able to keep up with everything.

There is no ‘leisure’ time, it virtually does not exist for dual degree pursuers. With the huge workload, you still need to go out there and volunteer, intern, and maybe even try and get some kind of part-time job. Your social life? It will still be there, it’s not impossible to juggle into everything else, but you have to understand that you will not be as free as others, and nor will you have time to hang out with everyone that much anymore. You will not have a typical college experience.

You will not have time to pursue other studies. Again, the workload is huge, and the time you need to dedicate to it in order to keep up and pass, is a lot. Besides that, you will not have space to explore other fields outside of your program. Either classes will conflict, you might be even taking too much classes, or you simply just will not have the time to do them.

Competition. You may be fortunate, and won’t have any – but for the most part, there will also be other people out there seeking to reap the same benefits as you out of dual degree programs. So be prepared to fight for your seat and be able to maintain top notch grades.

Remember: the road is not easy, but it will all be worth it.

Cover Image Credit: Ashley Rose

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8 Things You Should Never Say To An Education Major

"Is your homework just a bunch of coloring?"
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Yes, I'm an Education major, and yes, I love it. Your opinion of the field won't change my mind about my future. If you ever happen to come across an Education major, make sure you steer clear of saying these things, or they might hold you in from recess.

1. "Is your homework just a bunch of coloring?"

Um, no, it's not. We write countless lesson plans and units, match standards and objectives, organize activities, differentiate for our students, study educational theories and principles, and write an insane amount of papers on top of all of that. Sometimes we do get to color though and I won't complain about that.

2. "Your major is so easy."

See above. Also, does anyone else pay tuition to have a full-time job during their last semester of college?

3. "It's not fair that you get summers off."

Are you jealous? Honestly though, we won't really get summers off. We'll probably have to find a second job during the summer, we'll need to keep planning, prepping our classroom, and organizing to get ready for the new school year.

4. “That's a good starter job."

Are you serious..? I'm not in this temporarily. This is my career choice and I intend to stick with it and make a difference.

5. “That must be a lot of fun."

Yes, it definitely is fun, but it's also a lot of hard work. We don't play games all day.

6. “Those who can't, teach."

Just ugh. Where would you be without your teachers who taught you everything you know?

7. “So, you're basically a babysitter."

I don't just monitor students, I teach them.

8. “You won't make a lot of money."

Ah yes, I'm well aware, thanks for reminding me. Teachers don't teach because of the salary, they teach because they enjoy working with students and making a positive impact in their lives.

Cover Image Credit: BinsAndLabels

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No, A Colored Student Did Not 'Steal Your Spot,' They Worked Hard To Get Here

I keep hearing this ignorant question of, "How come illegal immigrants can get scholarships, but I can't?"

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Real talk, this whole "they're stealing our resources!" thing has to stop.

It ranges from welfare to acceptance letters into prestigious universities. People (and by people, I'm referring to those who identify as white) have made the assumption that they are having their opportunities stolen by people of color. That's ridiculous.

I love my university. I love the people at my university. However, when I sit in a classroom and look around at my colleagues, the majority of them are white. Of course, there are some classes that are filled with more people of color, but for the most part, they're predominantly white. So, let's say that out of a classroom of 30 students, only 7 identify as people of color.

In what world can somebody make the argument that those 7 students are stealing the spot of a white student? I don't think people realize how hard those 7 students had to work just to be in the same spot as their white counterparts.

Let me use my experience: I am a Latina woman who is attending university on a full-ride scholarship. I don't always tell people about this, because I don't feel like being asked, "wow, what did you do to get that?!" A lot. I keep hearing this ignorant question of, "How come illegal immigrants can get scholarships, but I can't?"

First off, those "illegal immigrants" you're bashing, don't even qualify for financial aid. They don't qualify for most scholarships, actually. Second, have you considered that maybe, that "illegal immigrant" worked hard in and outside of school to earn their scholarship? I received my full-ride scholarship on the basis of my GPA, but also because I am a lower-class woman of color and was selected because I am disproportionately affected by poverty and access to a quality education.

So, this scholarship was literally created because there is an understanding that minorities don't have the same access to education as our white counterparts. It's not a handout though, I had to work hard to get the money that I have now. When white students get scholarships, it's not a handout but when you're Latina like me, apparently it is.

This way of viewing minorities and their education is damaging, and further discourages these people from receiving a quality education. We didn't steal anybody's spot, we had to work to get where we are, twice as hard as our white colleagues that are not discriminated against on a daily basis.

Instead of tearing down students of color because you didn't get a scholarship, why not criticize the American education system instead? It's not our fault tuition is $40k a year, and we have no reason to apologize for existing in a space that is predominantly white.

To students of color: you worked hard to get where you are, and I am proud of you. To white students: I'm proud of you too. We all worked hard to get to where we are now, let's lift each other up, not put each other down.

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