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  1. #1

    Question Jobs for Psychology majors with business minor? HR/Marketing?

    I'm a college student working on my BA in Psychology with a minor in Business Administration. I've been exploring the different career paths I can go down once I graduate with this degree and I've been focusing on these:

    Human Resources - I saw that HR Generalists need 3-5 yrs HR experience to get this job. However, to be an HR Assistant you only need a high school diploma. Is there any in between or other entry level jobs in HR that don't require experience? What is the pay for these jobs?

    Marketing - I'm interested in this field, but I don't want a job in SALES. I was considering PR or Advertising, but I'm not sure what jobs new graduates can get. Also, I heard the starting salary in Marketing is extremely low.

    I'll have my bachelors degree, so I don't think it's crazy to expect a salary of $30,000 just out of college. Is this possible in these fields? If not, what other fields should I look into with this degree? When I looked online, those with bachelors degrees in business had an average salary of $46,000 a year and these jobs are in the business field. So, what gives?

    My long term goal is to go to graduate school and get my MBA or something along those lines, but I'll of course need work experience first. I know salaries vary by location, so I'll tell you that I'll be working in Charlotte, NC.

    I just want to be able to make a living and not make what I make now ($11/hr) even with a degree. If that's the case, why even have one?

    Thanks so much in advance!
    Lyndsey

  2. #2
    Administrator Expert ahos77's Avatar
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    Hi Lyndsey,

    Welcome to the forums!

    Something that may help you when exploring career options is the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' Occupational Outlook Handbook. If you haven't heard of it already, I swear, it's not as dry as it sounds. For each occupation it covers, it includes info on education requirements, workplace environment, average salaries (by location, as well), expected job growth and more.

    Here are its entries for:
    Human Resources, Training, and Labor Relations Managers and Specialists
    Human Resources Assistants, Except Payroll and Timekeeping
    Advertising, Marketing, Promotions, Public Relations, and Sales Managers
    Advertising and Public Relations Services *(This last one is actually from their Career Guide to Industries)

    Now, onto your specific questions:

    Human Resources - I saw that HR Generalists need 3-5 yrs HR experience to get this job. However, to be an HR Assistant you only need a high school diploma. Is there any in between or other entry level jobs in HR that don't require experience? What is the pay for these jobs?
    A generalist needs more experience because in a small business, they may run pretty much the whole human resources shebang. They need to know a lot of info about a lot of different aspects of human resources. A human resources assistant might only need a high school diploma, but a college degree puts you above other candidates and puts you on the higher end of the wage scale. Will you be making a whole lot more than the non-degree carrying person next to you? Maybe not, at least right away. But promotions to HR generalist and managers, etc usually require a college degree, so you're set up in that respect.

    Looking at Payscale isn't always the most reliable way to judge what a position earns (there's a lot that can skew the scale, such as a lack of data, outdated info, and different qualifications), but it doesn't hurt. According to Payscale, the average HR Assistant salary range is $27,810 - $38,490, while the HR Coordinator is $31,677 - $44,093. (What's the difference between these jobs? Well, from a quick Google search, it seems many businesses use them interchangeably, but the BLS says coordinators interview prospective employees.)

    I'll have my bachelors degree, so I don't think it's crazy to expect a salary of $30,000 just out of college.
    I don't think this is crazy, either. According to the PayScale info above, that starting salary isn't ridiculous. However, something PayScale doesn't really show you is real time salary options. With high unemployment and competition for jobs, it might not be a cake walk to get your $30k right away, but those jobs are out there, so why can't it be you they're paying, right?

    Marketing - I'm interested in this field, but I don't want a job in SALES. I was considering PR or Advertising, but I'm not sure what jobs new graduates can get. Also, I heard the starting salary in Marketing is extremely low.
    Entry-level marketing, PR and advertising jobs are highly competitive. Their salaries are not always particularly stellar, but many can be. According to PayScale, copywriters make an average salary of $33,943 - $50,344. So assuming an entry level copywriter would be on the lower end of that scale, their starting salary could rival that of an entry level HR assistant or coordinator.

    Just some advice, take it or leave it, I wouldn't make your choice based on what you'll be getting paid as a starting salary, since depending on the city and business, this could be kind of a toss up. Instead, I would focus on the long-term goal. And I wouldn't look at graduate or business school as your long-term goal. That's more like a step on the path to your long-term goal, since your career is going to extend way past getting your master's. I would think beyond that. Is your long-term goal to run your own business? Maybe it's to become a CEO, HR director, or marketing manager? Or maybe it's less that and more of a lifestyle choice. Do you want to end up in a position with flexible hours or telecommuting? Answering those questions may help you decide whether to start in human resources or marketing/pr/advertising.

  3. #3
    Thank you for your answer! I really appreciate it and it was extremely helpful!


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