In the state of Missouri, employment projections that expand over the next several years show that approximately 32-41% of the jobs that are available will be appropriate for individuals who have only completed a high school diploma. It is crucial to note that while this percentage is not extremely low, the rate of pay that will be associated with these available jobs is likely to be at the lower end of the spectrum. In fact, there is not a vast amount of difference between the percentage of available jobs for individuals who hold a college degree and those who only have a high school diploma. 59-63% of the jobs that are available in this state will require applicants to hold some level of a post secondary degree.
As with any other state, it is important to realize that your rate of pay will surely be directly related to the level of education that you have successfully completed. Below, you will find a brief introduction to a few of Missouri's top colleges and universities. You will definitely want to keep in mind that this list is certainly not conclusive. In fact, there are many community or junior colleges and vocational institutes that may be more appropriately suited to you and your intended career goals. Take your time, carefully weigh the details provided for each of the schools discussed, and make informed decisions that will positively benefit your future, as well as fit into your lifestyle.
The largest university in the state of Missouri is the University of Missouri (Columbia). This publicly operated research university currently reports about 31,000 enrolled students. Of this large number, about 24,000 students are working to obtain an undergraduate degree in the major area of their choosing. Despite the fact that this university is well recognized for its degree programs in the areas of research, science, and liberal arts, there are definitely many other viable options for interested parties. Washington University in St. Louis is noted as the most selective and prestigious university in the state of Missouri. This privately operated research based facility is currently home to about 14,000 students; about half of these enrolled students are working to obtain an undergraduate degree program.
While this learning institution is well known for its exemplary degree programs in the areas of science, liberal arts, and research, there are numerous other viable options for prospective students to consider. If a diverse student body and learning environment is what you have in mind, then you will definitely want to check out Webster University. The student body at this learning institution consists of individuals from all fifty states and nearly 130 different countries. Located in St. Louis, this private university boasts an impressive fifteen to one student to faculty ratio. Although the enrollment at this learning facility has recently been reported at nearly 20,000, interested students can expect to thrive in an average class size of only eleven students. In contrary to most of the post secondary schools in this state, the majority of the individuals who are attending Webster University are working to complete a graduate level degree program. In fact, only about one fourth of the enrolled students are working to complete an undergraduate degree program
The College of the Ozarks is a unique addition to this list of popular collegiate choices in the state of Missouri. Located in Point Lookout, this college is home to only about 1,300 undergraduate students. In fact, this learning institution does not offer any graduate level degree programs for their students. Operated as a private Christian liberal arts work college, The College of the Ozarks is comprised of full time students who do not pay tuition. Instead, at this educational facility it is quite customary for individuals to work in order to cover the cost of their education. In addition to this perk, prospective students will have the opportunity to thrive in a classroom setting with a thirteen to one student to faculty ratio.
The Missouri University of Science and Technology, which is located in Rolla, is a public university that has a curriculum with a technology and science focus. Current online statistics show that approximately 6,800 students are enrolled, with the majority of these pursuing an undergraduate degree program. This post secondary learning facility is well known as being the first technological institute west of the Mississippi River. With a sixteen to one student to faculty ratio and great outdoor living activities, this university certainly offers the best of both worlds.
Hands-on Careers - During slow economic times some of the positions that end up being consistent and growing including those positions where you could own your own business. Careers in HVAC, Automotive Technology, Welding, Cosmetology, CDL Truck Driving and Massage Therapy are all careers where you control your own destiny.
Healthcare Related – As we will discuss below the medical industry nationwide is falling short with keeping up with demand of those retiring. Entry level positions in the medical field are some of the easier careers to start once you have received your training. Careers in: Medical Assistant, Pharmacy Technician, Dental Assisting, Practical Nursing, Healthcare Management, Medical Billing and Coding and Medical Front Office are among some of the most sought after careers in Missouri especially in the Springfield, Kansas City, St. Louis, Joplin, St. Joseph, Berkeley and St. Charles area.
Computer Related – With over 104,107 computer related positions in MO the numbers continue to rise with an average salary of $70,316. Careers include: Network Administration, Computer Science, Cybersecurity, Computer Engineering, Video Game Design and Website Design.
Business – The state is ranked as a Top 10 pro-business state which drives in companies. Earning your degree in Business Management, Accounting, Entrepreneurship or Marketing is recommended if you want to qualify for positions in this sector.
The state has an average salary for its workers of 43,640. Currently with a workforce of over 2.7 million it has a healthy economy and export and manufacturing system. The highest paid fields are in healthcare with surgeons and general practitioners making $200,000 or more per year. The next sector is in business where marketing managers earn $132,000, Engineers making $129,000 and Sales Managers earning $115,000. The computer/IT industry averages $84,000 in salary per year with CIS Managers making $125,000.
The state is home to some of the largest employers in the US including Wal-Mart, Mercy Hospital, Boeing and Fort Motor Company. These companies take advantage of not only a big employment pool and low unemployment rate but also a low cost of living and minimum wage standard compared to the rest of the nation. Some of the top sectors that employ the most include:
Mining Industry – The state mines over 90% of all the lead in the US. It also employs those in the coal and limestone fields. Typically these jobs don’t require a degree unless it is engineering.
Healthcare Sector – Missouri has a highly educated workforce with over 88% of its population earning their high school diploma. The average salary is $41,300 and hospitals make up over 125,000 jobs in the state. The shortage of nurses has put a strain on the state and available jobs have increased over 19% in the state. The aging number of nurses is set to return will put even more demand on this field. If you want a recession proof career then consider becoming a practical nurse.
Tourism – Missouri has the Gateway Arch and Branson, MO which is a great tourism destination with resorts and shows. Over 271,085 jobs are related to the tourism industry with wages expected to rise 3.5% over the next 3 years. Earning your tourism management certificate or Bachelor’s degree in a related field will help you enter into the industry. Culinary Arts is another popular degree to possess in this sector with all the different restaurants and resorts.
University of Missouri – Located in Columbia, MO it is the largest state college with over 35,000 enrollments. More information can be found at www.missouri.edu. The university has over 300,000 alumni and has over 300 degree granting programs.
Missouri State University – The University is located in Springfield and was founded in 1905. It has one of the highest student acceptance rates of the state at 85% of all applicants being accepted. Learn more about their programs and how to apply by visiting www.missouristate.edu. The school enrolls over 24,000 and hires over 4000 faculty members.
Southeast Missouri State University – SMSU is an accredited university that is located in Girardeau, MO and enrolls over 11,000 students each year. Learn more at www.semo.edu. They offer over 200 areas of study including Associate’s, Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs.
Affordability: Missouri has some of the nation’s lowest costs when it comes to tuition rate and housing for incoming freshmen.
Scholarships and Grants: Missouri residents can apply to many of the state funded grants and scholarships that are awarded by the state. Some are needs based where others are for those entering a specific field. Even if you aren’t a resident of MO you can still apply to open scholarships.
Acceptance Rates: If your grades weren’t the best in high school then Missouri has colleges that have acceptance rates in the high 80% range.
Trade Schools: The state has over 40 vocational or trade related schools to choose from for those who don’t wish to attend a traditional college or university. These trade schools usually train students so they can earn a certificate or diploma upon completion.