What Can I Do With An Information Technology Major?

"I like computers a lot and I think I might want to major in IT. I am not very good at software, though. I am much better at working with harder. This is why I have not decided to major in computer science. My parents try to push me in that direction, but I am pretty sure that isn’t something I want to do. I wouldn’t be good at it, and even though I’d make a lot of money, I think I’d ultimately feel out of place and really regret it. Are there high earning careers I can get other than programming which will satisfy my parents? They’re the ones paying for my education, so how can I convince them to let me major in IT?"

asked by Nora from Orlando, FL

There are a ton of different careers you can get into with a major in IT, Nora. Information technology majors can not only become programmers, but also communications specialists, data communications analysts, database administrators, product development majors, support specialists, quality assurance analysts, systems integrators, inventory managers, internet marketing analysts, network operators and much more.

If salary is a major consideration, there shouldn’t be a problem. If you check out the IT professions listed by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), you’ll find that the lowest earning profession is that of computer support specialist.

The median annual salary listed for that job is $46,260! The highest earning job is still software developer (programming), with a median of $90,530 a year.

Obviously that’s much higher, but there isn’t much to complain about with the lowest salary on that page. That’s definitely middle income, and you could easily support yourself and a family with that kind of money.

Another good selling point for this major is that IT professionals are in high demand and will continue to be in high demand over the coming years. Many jobs in this field are going to grow more rapidly than those in other fields, because computers are such a huge part of our lives. That trend is only going to continue as we come to rely more and more on our computers and the internet to conduct our business, communications and more.

So those are the things I would tell your parents to try to convince them to let you major in IT instead of computer science. You could also agree to take a computer science degree during your first semester just to make sure it isn’t for you. It’d count toward either major, and it might help you to make your case (especially if you’re right and you are indeed not cut out for it).

I suggest you visit the BLS website as well and download some statistics to show your family regarding salaries and demand. This should ultimately help to persuade them since the information comes straight from the government and is very thoroughly researched.

Career Spotlight: It Manager

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