One of the first questions many students receive when they decide on a degree program in college is, “What can you do with that?” While people mean well when they ask that question, it can be irritating and unnerving for students. Perhaps they haven’t thought that far ahead or aren’t yet sure what they want to do with their education, just yet.
If you’re pursuing a graduate degree in public relations and find yourself wondering what you can do with it once it’s in your hand, here are a few suggestions to get the ball rolling on planning your life, post-graduation!
Public relations may seem straightforward at first glance, but there are actually many job options available in this field. Some of these include:
- Marketing specialist or assistant
- Event coordinator
- Company representative at public events and functions
- Public relations manager or specialist to major companies
- Account executive
- Communications director
- Media planner and coordinator
- Fundraising coordinators for major events and programs
- Director of client or investor relations for financial and major corporate players
These options may be found in the public or private sector, working with everyone from major businesses to nonprofit organizations to government entities. The employment opportunities available to a particular professional will depend on their level of education, location and other factors, but these are some general ideas to consider when weighing your own options for the future.
Salary, Growth Rate and Career Outlook
There is a wide margin of variation in the field of public relations between the various applications of this degree. Because of this, there is an equally wide gap in the top level of earning potential and the bottom, that even those just beginning a career in this field can live comfortably.
Salaries for public relations workers usually range from $40,000 a year to $60,000 a year, and can be even higher. What you will make will depend on your place of employment, region of residence, type of work, level within your company and the level of education and experience you bring to the table. Having a graduate degree in public relations obviously offers an advantage, as more educated and independent professionals are always likely to earn more than their less-educated peers.
While the field of public relations is not experiencing a booming growth rate, it does offer a steady projected outlook to students in the coming years. Graduates can expect a 6-7% increase in employment opportunities in their field, as well as a forecast of stability in strength. With the increased use of social media, as well as marketing and outreach through these channels, public relations specialists can feel comfortable and safe in their career choice in the years ahead. What’s more, the ability to secure this education entirely online with the ever-increasing capabilities of distance and online learning means that students can secure their future without ever having to step foot into a classroom. Truly, this is the career path of the future.