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      12-22-2011, 11:11 AM   #1
Pcemkr
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For those with a post-graduate degree (M.S., Ph.D.)...

For those with M.S. or Ph.D. in an Engineering/IT discipline, I have some questions:

Were you compensated upon graduation?
How long after completing your degree did you stay in your current position?

I'm graduating with my M.S. in Systems Engineering in May. I don't believe my employer gives a bonus or raise for this. I doubt many companies are offering anything for it nowadays; "tuition assistance is generous enough."
After finishing my M.S., I'm shooting to move to another position after the 6-month mark, since my company has a 6mo lock-in period for tuition reimbursement. Fair enough?
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      12-22-2011, 11:56 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Pcemkr View Post
For those with M.S. or Ph.D. in an Engineering/IT discipline, I have some questions:

Were you compensated upon graduation?
How long after completing your degree did you stay in your current position?

I'm graduating with my M.S. in Systems Engineering in May. I don't believe my employer gives a bonus or raise for this. I doubt many companies are offering anything for it nowadays; "tuition assistance is generous enough."
After finishing my M.S., I'm shooting to move to another position after the 6-month mark, since my company has a 6mo lock-in period for tuition reimbursement. Fair enough?
Your new credentials only make you more competitive amongst your peers. Truth is that your actual skills, experience and ability to sell yourself as being valuable to an employer are the only drivers to your compensation.

I have had many nice folks who have worked for me and felt because today they now have a graduate degree they deserve more money for doing the same job they were doing yesterday when they didn’t have a graduate degree. This never got them the result they expected – more compensation simply for having the credential. Truthfully it’s a relatively career limiting event to go to your boss and ask for more money for something you’ve done for yourself outside of work, no boss likes entitled staff. Everyone of those nice folks would have been far better served looking for other opportunities within the prevue my employ to leverage their new skills and provide more value - doing this leads to increases in compensation. I wanted to see them take their new skills and confidence and reach higher, I would gladly pay for that.
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      12-22-2011, 11:57 AM   #3
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Question. Have you passed your FE at this point?
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      12-22-2011, 12:01 PM   #4
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Question. Have you passed your FE at this point?
FE/PE is not necessary in my field. I'm in gov't intelligence/defense IT/Engineering, not ME/EE/CE, etc.
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      12-22-2011, 12:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matthewk View Post
Your new credentials only make you more competitive amongst your peers. Truth is that your actual skills, experience and ability to sell yourself as being valuable to an employer are the only drivers to your compensation.

I have had many nice folks who have worked for me and felt because today they now have a graduate degree they deserve more money for doing the same job they were doing yesterday when they didn’t have a graduate degree. This never got them the result they expected – more compensation simply for having the credential. Truthfully it’s a relatively career limiting event to go to your boss and ask for more money for something you’ve done for yourself outside of work, no boss likes entitled staff. Everyone of those nice folks would have been far better served looking for other opportunities within the prevue my employ to leverage their new skills and provide more value - doing this leads to increases in compensation. I wanted to see them take their new skills and confidence and reach higher, I would gladly pay for that.
This is true, and i tend to agree with you on the point that it helps you when your looking for a job... not really when you already have one. I may actually argue the point that experience counts more! I work in the IT field, and the first thing employers ask me is ... How much experience do you have doing this and doing that... Your pay is actually based on Experience! When you look online for jobs, there's a field that says PAY: BOE ... "Based On Experience"

The only other situation i can think of where this might actually help you is in the education field itself. Teachers ARE compensated based on titles. Not much more, but it does go up if you get a higher degree.
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      12-22-2011, 12:05 PM   #6
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FE/PE is not necessary in my field. I'm in gov't intelligence/defense IT/Engineering, not ME/EE/CE, etc.
Its not necessary. But passing the tests and being able to put "PE" after your signature can be just as valuable as Ph.D in terms of employability
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      12-22-2011, 12:25 PM   #7
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This is true, and i tend to agree with you on the point that it helps you when your looking for a job... not really when you already have one. I may actually argue the point that experience counts more! I work in the IT field, and the first thing employers ask me is ... How much experience do you have doing this and doing that... Your pay is actually based on Experience! When you look online for jobs, there's a field that says PAY: BOE ... "Based On Experience"

The only other situation i can think of where this might actually help you is in the education field itself. Teachers ARE compensated based on titles. Not much more, but it does go up if you get a higher degree.
I agree with that no doubt, but education can sometimes be substituted for experience.

There are no PEs in my industry, so I wouldn't be able to work under one for the 4-year requirement.
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      12-22-2011, 12:32 PM   #8
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I agree with that no doubt, but education can sometimes be substituted for experience.
In techinical areas 3yrs experience > 1yr experience and MS degree... Always.
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      12-22-2011, 12:33 PM   #9
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In techinical areas 3yrs experience > 1yr experience and MS degree... Always.
I will have 3 years experience and my M.S.
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      12-22-2011, 12:36 PM   #10
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while having a good educational background helps and makes you more competitive, having real world tangible experience is a big driver in terms of salary compensation.
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      12-22-2011, 12:38 PM   #11
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I will have 3 years experience and my M.S.
6yrs experience > 3yrs experience + MS.. just the rule of thumb
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      12-22-2011, 12:42 PM   #12
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I hear ya. I've had 3/4 of it reimbursed by employers, so it's a no-brainer to get it. It'll do nothing but give me a leg up on competition. I can't increase my years of experience, but I can increase my training and education.
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      12-22-2011, 12:52 PM   #13
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I hear ya. I've had 3/4 of it reimbursed by employers, so it's a no-brainer to get it. It'll do nothing but give me a leg up on competition. I can't increase my years of experience, but I can increase my training and education.
This is exactly correct. The cridential gets you the interview, you get you the job and compensation.
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      12-23-2011, 08:48 AM   #14
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If you have a better offer elsewhere and then go to your boss, you might get a raise.
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      12-23-2011, 10:45 AM   #15
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I got my MS while working for feds in IT. Needed to stay for 3 months after completion to satisfy the payment options. Stayed another couple of years then moved to local gov. MS got me in the door, but no extra pay.

P.S. Thank you all for paying your taxes that I might attend USC for 2 years!!!!
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