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Top 6 Graduate Programs to Choose by 2030

Posted by:
February 17, 2021

There are increased opportunities for you to transform your future with a graduate degree, and ultimately, to position yourself to secure a meaningful career in your chosen field.

We decided to take a look at several career fields that are booming in the state of Washington — and across the nation. Now, it’s your chance to take a look at the numbers and decide which of these fields you want to secure a career in.

Marketing Analytics

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the demand for market research analysts is expected to grow by 18 percent by 2029, a rate of growth much higher than the average for all occupations. The demand for mathematicians and statisticians who can interpret data is expected to grow by an astounding 33 percent over the same period.

What does this mean for those who are looking to build a successful career or who want to switch fields in order to maximize their opportunity? It means that there has never been a better time to consider a career in analytics, especially marketing analytics.


Nursing and other healthcare-related professions are currently some of the fastest-growing occupations in the United States, with the need for nurse practitioners in particular growing at 52 percent, far above the average for all occupations. 

The ongoing nursing shortage and the projected retirement of over 1 million experienced nurses by 2030 means that nurses who gain higher levels of education and experience now will be well-poised to lead the next generation of nurses in all settings: research, education, and practice.


There is a national shortage of qualified teachers across disciplines, and the shortage is especially acute in STEM fields. In Washington state specifically, teacher shortages are greatest in STEM, special education, and English language learning classrooms. The field of teaching offers you a variety of career paths, especially if you invest in a master’s degree. 

Don’t fall for the idea that pursuing a career in teaching means you will live in a classroom for your whole professional life. As your career progresses, you can transition toward school administration, a school leadership role, curriculum development, research, and more. Many people choose to go ahead and get their master’s at the beginning of their career, knowing it allows them much more flexibility and potential for growth long-term.

Business Administration

The traditional Master of Business Administration (MBA) is a respected business degree that prepares business leaders to lead change, implement solutions, and help organizations reach their goals.  

An MBA also prepares business leaders to secure top executive positions, and according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, top executives make an average of $104, 690 per year. Overall employment is also supposed to grow by 4 percent, which is about as fast as the national average.

Mental Health

Working in the field of therapy and mental health is an important career, providing support and help to those in crisis and working toward a more diverse, inclusive, and healthy society. There is no better time to begin a career in this healing profession as a marriage and family therapist.

According to Occupational Employment Statistics gathered by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the annual mean wage for marriage and family therapists in the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue area is $51,170, and the career outlook for mental health professionals nationwide is strong. Nationwide, the demand for marriage and family therapists is expected to grow 22 percent by 2029, a rate much faster than the growth rate for other occupations.


Kinesiology is the science of human movement. Kinesiology studies the principles of movement and investigates the complexity of the mechanical, physiological, and psychological components of movement. The study of kinesiology involves deep understanding of various biological systems as well as behavioral theories. Many people are introduced to the concept of kinesiology through a sub-field like physical therapy or sports medicine, but kinesiology is the larger umbrella term for the theory and practice of human movement.

If you are interested in building a career in sports, fitness, physical education, or health care, a master’s of science in kinesiology is a great way to study the theoretical and practical foundations of human activity. A master’s degree in this field will also significantly improve your job and career prospects:

  • Increase your earning potential— Professionals who earn a master’s degree make an average of $7,000-$9,000 more than those with a bachelor’s degree.
  • Expand your professional opportunities—A master’s in kinesiology opens the door to full-time teaching, coaching and strength- and-conditioning positions in colleges and universities, as well as administrative and leadership roles in the health and fitness industry.

Thinking about going back to school for a graduate degree? Connect with PLU today!

Pacific Lutheran University seeks to educate students for lives of thoughtful inquiry, service, leadership and care — for other people, for their communities and for the Earth. 

PLU purposefully integrates the liberal arts, professional studies and civic engagement in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. With distinctive international programs and close student-faculty research opportunities, PLU helps its 3,100 students from all faiths and backgrounds discern their life’s vocation through coursework, mentorship and internships at world-class Puget Sound-area businesses and institutions.

If you are thinking about going back to school for a graduate degree in order to secure a meaningful career in your field of interest, then we encourage you to request more information or start your online application today!

Have questions? Schedule an appointment with a graduate admission counselor at Pacific Lutheran University!

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