Calculating the ROI on Higher Education

Calculating the ROI on Higher Education
The  Euro  zone is mired in  crisis. The US economy never really  had its full recovery, while China’s economic growth may not be enough to  pull the world out of a  possible slump. Meanwhile, economists across the globe have warned about a possible global slowdown in both rich and poor countries alike.

As a nation, Singapore is unlikely to  be spared from the economic slowdown.  In a speech made  by Prime Minister  Lee  Hsien  Loong recently,  the  Singapore economy is  likely to  be slower in 2012, although it is not going to be as bad as the years of 2008 and 2009.

In  light of all  the global  uncertainty, employees thinking of furthering their  careers with an MBA or Masters  degree must now grapple with one of their biggest questions: Is this the right time to pursue a higher degree? Will it help you get executive jobs or accounting jobs? Are the conditions favourable for potential students?

The risks of  pursuing a  higher  degree are inherently real.  For one, having a higher degree does not necessarily set one up for business
success.  Some of the most successful  entrepreneurs such  as Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg   and Apple  co-founder  Steve Wozniak have built their businesses without completing their degrees.

Furthermore,  as MBAs and  Master  degrees may not  be a  proven indicator of future success, this means that students who  do not have a scholarship or inancial backing from a company have to fork out the  hefty  inancial investment for their education – which may not be recouped through higher salaries or better jobs. So the  pertinent  question remains: Is  pursuing a  higher  degree a viable option during a downturn?

So the  pertinent  question remains: Is  pursuing a  higher  degree a viable option during a downturn?


Nick Soriano, Director of Marketing and Admissions, Nanyang Technological University, (NTU) Nanyang Business School

DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVES
Naturally,  the spokespeople from the  various universities that HeadHuntinterviewed gave various points of views on how students should tackle this pressing question. 

For Nick Soriano, Director of Marketing and Admissions at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) Nanyang  Business School, he said that economic slowdowns are good opportunities for professionals to look back and assess their careers. Soriano added that many use this opportunity to  pursue  higher education to improve on their qualii  cations and prepare for their next career steps.

“The reason why  people  do this  during this time is  because professionals knowthattherewill be fewer opportunitiesto progress
in their  careers  during the recession – so  cost of  lost opportunity is lower.”

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