Ultimately, career experts say, it's up to the students to make the most of their degree, no matter their field. Simply earning a graduate degree and slapping it on a résumé isn't enough to guarantee increased earnings potential. That's the case even in the fields identified in the Georgetown study—such as the physical and social sciences—where graduate degrees appear to drastically boost income, consultants say. "Professionals are not entitled to work because of a degree; they earn work based on their ability to do work and think," says Lorrie Ross, a career and marketing consultant.
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