I also work in the O&G industry as a petroleum geologist. Geologists typically have to get a M.S. degree in order to get hired into O&G but they also start above $100,000 base salary. I also enjoy an awesome work-life balance, hardly ever having to work more than 40 hours per week. I love my job but the roller-coaster ride of commodity prices can be disheartening at times.
Great post, Penny! As you know – I am finishing up year 29 in education. I have two Master’s degree and a doctorate and I’ve never earned six figures. Had I stayed as a principal in the last five years, I would have made six figures. I’d likely be at around $120,000 right now. But I gave that up to go teach at the college level, not work 12 months a year, and have fun educating the next generation of teachers. Five years ago, I knew I was almost to FI because of this community (and that’s never making six figures and being a single mom for a number of years…)
Look around the blogosphere; law school grads are taking perma-part time jobs, MBA’s are a dime a dozen, and on and on. As long as the population keeps climbing uncontrollably in the US, and as long as businesses can manipulate the government into helping them keep downward pressure on jobs through slimy programs like H1B’s, big salaries will be a thing of the past. It’s why you should think *really* hard about going to college. It’s not for everyone, and its no guarantee that you’ll do better than if you don’t. The old fable of going to college means you’ll make $1m more in your lifetime than if you don’t, has been disproved time and again.
I’m always surprised by how many people feel “icky” about promoting affiliate products – I started my blogging “career” building niche blogs specifically to sell Amazon products, then branched out into other affiliate programs. I’m a big fan of affiliate marketing, provided that the blogger/marketer is also providing quality content with their links.
I don’t know of your friend’s particular situation but I’m curious as to what his resume look likes or what kind of grades he made. Is he willing to relocate or is he looking for a specific type of job? There are so many reasons why someone with a Chemical Engineering degree will say they haven’t found a job but I’ve found that top of that list is people who decided they hated the major a little too late, made poor grades or those who are not open to relocation or field work. Four years is a long long time for a ChemE to not find a job, he’s doing something wrong.
Theme – you don’t need a special theme for affiliate marketing, you probably just need a blog. I recommend StudioPress themes since that’s what Yoast, Matt Cutts (from Google), and I use. Matt Mullenweg, founder of WordPress also recommends them. One of the biggest mistakes I made was using a theme from Themeforest… since they’re built by independent developers who may stop making updates to their theme. This happened to me and I hear horror stories all the time about people having to switch themes and redesign their entire site. I’ve been using the same StudioPress theme (Outreach Pro) for 3 years. Their themes are lightweight (load fast), SEO-friendly via optimized code, secure, and they have a huge selection of plugins for the Genesis Framework and an awesome community in the Genesis WordPress Facebook Group. They include documentation for setting it up and will serve you for many, many years.
Many people who do not attend college earn six-figure incomes and become successful without four-year college degrees. In fact, studies revealing that high school graduates earn an average of $1.2 million over the course of their working life illustrate that opportunities exist for those without degrees to make $100,000 or more each year. Achieving financial success without a college degree requires a lot of determination, risk-taking, and networking, but the opportunities are definitely out there.
Amazon Associates – for pretty much anything sold on Amazon. If you have links to your books on your website (and you should do!), this is a good way to start with affiliate marketing and you will receive a little bit extra if people shop through your link, as well as a percentage of other products that people buy within a 24 hour period. You can use your existing Amazon account and then find your books, copy the special link and then use that on your site. You can also use a site like Booklinker.net or Books2Read.com to create one link that works for all stores and contains affiliate links.
I’m 23 y/o and have been going to community college on and off since h/s. Didn’t really care about grades the first 2 years so that really screwed up my gpa in the beginning. Long story short, I’m sitting at a 3.0 gpa currently and want to change my situation. I’m going to take school and grades more seriously. I have to stay one more year at community college to complete the required transfer classes to be able to attend a university. I can probably raise my gpa to a 3.1 before i transfer, but I don’t think i can transfer to a good business school with that gpa. So I plan to transfer to a Cal State and try to keep a 4.0 for 2 years until I graduate so my average gpa from community college and University would be about 3.5-3.6. Then, my next step would be to apply to a top 15 business school
I don’t have firsthand data but I believe you’d earn a similar amount working in investment banking as in Pet E for the first few years. However, you’d probably work up to twice the hours (60-80+ per week). If you do well and stay in the industry you could make an extremely high income…much more potential. Might have to go to a prestigious school and be at the top of your class however.
Petroleum engineers can maintain a normal life. Perhaps you’re thinking of a career in finance. I know I still wonder what could’ve been every time I visit Sam’s site. However, a senior engineering role (6-10 years) can command a $200,000 per year salary. Despite the high pay, I rarely see anyone consistently working more than 40 hours per week. When you calculate the hourly rate, it’s equivalent to someone who earns $300,000 but working 60 hours per week.
I have a relatively similar story. I am a 24 year old with a Computer Engineering degree. Did well in high school, scholarship to a good public school and I’m now making ~140k plus bonuses and stock options. I currently live on the east coast, but know tons of college friends in silicon valley making even more (although the cost of living is much higher).
Let’s say, you are a developer who has just completed a client’s website. You think that it is one of your greatest works and the client is truly impressed. This will be a great time for you to offer them a website maintenance service from a third-party. You partner with this company through their recurring affiliate program. As long as your happy client stays with them, you get a steady stream of passive income.
I got an email saying that he guarantees that you will make money with the Seven Figure Franchise, and quite frankly, that’s a pretty bold claim if you ask me. One of the things that really makes me suspicious about this, or any product of this tipe is that they don’t mention the price straight up front to people. I don’t have $4000 just laying around to purchase this, and even if I did, I would invest it into something like my Internet radio station and promoting it. Yes, I own and run an Internet radio station that plays country music, and it is a very professional-sounding station complete with jingles, and lots and lots of great country music.
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