5 Jul 2022

Does The Degree You Do Dictate Your Future STEM Career?


In short, no. Your choices are endless.

From a biologist to a pilot, some of the most exciting and interesting careers involve STEM. It appears in almost every aspect of life and careers in STEM are increasing at an amazing rate. But that does not mean you need your whole career planned out before university to be able to work in a STEM field.

I'm Making Plans gif | Stemettes Zine

Granted, if your life-long ambition is to become a vet, you may want to choose a degree that sets you on the right path. Yet the restrictions that our academic choices have on our careers are lifting.

Nowhere is this clearer than in STEM. I used to think that to work in technology my CV needed to include building a computer in my garage at 13. This was a myth I believed until beginning my technology career after university. Before I was 21, my main coding experience was printing ‘Hello World’ onto my computer screen. Fast forward several years and I have now worked as a Data Scientist for over 5 years where I am coding every day. Along the way, I have seen exactly how varied a route into this career can be and how much you
learn on the job. Some people complete online courses or attend teaching boot camps. Proving that you can navigate your way into a STEM career without a relevant degree. This is particularly evident in the technology domain.

So many choices gif | Stemettes Zine

Your choice of degree doesn’t determine the direction or trajectory of your career. Many people are making significant contributions in STEM but do not have a STEM degree. It is possible to consider other career paths, or completely switch, further down the line. Whether it be 1, 10 or 20 years into
your career, it is never too late to transition to a new career path. Often, it is the transferable skills you develop in your degree that will be relevant in a STEM career.

Critical thinking, creativity, communication.

Passion and enjoyment for the subject.

All these skills will equip you for success in a STEM career. So, for anyone starting their career, do what you enjoy, always be yourself and the rest will fall into place.

This article was written by Ashleigh Randall, Data Scientist, Telecommunications.

Read more about university options on the Stemettes Zine here >> 

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