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PhD vs MS

Carrie Schneider carries at nrel.gov
Tue Nov 9 19:22:45 EST 1993

I would like to reply to a post from Tonya Frederic who said  
"My Mom's advice has been the best so far : You will never regret     
having a PhD, whereas you may regret not having one."         
I think this is not necessarily true. While you must have a PhD for an
academic career, there are many positions in industry for MS
and BS degree holders. In fact, a PhD may be a handicap for some positions.
If a position is advertised for candidates with a MS or BS, most likely
PhD holders will not even be considered, even if the position requires        
independent reasearch skills. I think this must be because PhDs command         
higher salaries, and the company does not want to pay if they can hire a 
good person with an MS. So, it is worth considering what kind of job you        
want, than investigate the academic credentials required.
Carrie Schneider                                                       

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