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What They Do:
Database administrators use specialized software to store and organize data, such as financial information and customer shipping records. They make sure that data are available to users and secure from unauthorized access. Database administrators typically do the following: Ensure that organizational data are secure; Back up and restore data to prevent data loss; Identify user needs to create and administer databases; Ensure that databases operate efficiently and without error; Make and test modifications to database structure when needed; Maintain databases and update permissions; Merge old databases into new ones. Database administrators, often called DBAs, make sure that data analysts and other users can easily use databases to find the information they need and that systems perform as they should. Some DBAs oversee the development of new databases. They have to determine the needs of the database and who will be using it. They often monitor database performance and conduct performance-tuning support. Many databases contain personal or financial information, making security important. Database administrators often plan security measures, making sure that data are secure from unauthorized access.

Work Environment:
Database administrators held about 119,500 jobs in 2016. The largest employers of database administrators were as follows: Computer systems design and related services 16%; Educational services; state, local, and private 10% Management of companies and enterprises 7%; Insurance carriers and related activities 7%;  Data processing, hosting, and related services 4%. Some DBAs administer databases for retail companies that keep track of their buyers’ credit card and shipping information; others work in healthcare settings and manage patients’ medical records. Almost all database administrators work full time.

How to Become One:
Database administrators (DBAs) usually have a bachelor’s degree in an information- or computer-related subject, such as computer science. Most database administrators have a bachelor’s degree in an information- or computer-related subject such as computer science. Firms with large databases may prefer applicants who have a master’s degree focusing on data or database management, typically either in computer science, information systems, or information technology. Database administrators need an understanding of database languages, the most common of which is Structured Query Language, commonly called SQL. Most database systems use some variation of SQL, and a DBA will need to become familiar with whichever programming language the firm uses. Certification is generally offered directly from software vendors or vendor-neutral certification providers. Certification validates the knowledge and best practices required from DBAs. Companies may require their database administrators to be certified in the products they use.

The median annual wage for database administrators was $84,950 in May 2016. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $47,300, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $129,930.

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Appleton, WI

Lawrence University is a residential liberal arts college and conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It is a supportive and welcoming academic community of 1,500 intellectually curious, diverse, multi-interested students from nearly every state and 50 countries—all committed to a rigorous and challenging educational experience. 

Led by a faculty of 167 professors (92 percent of whom have a Ph.D. or other terminal degree), Lawrence is devoted to Engaged Learning as the most effective way to prepare students for lives of personal fulfillment and professional accomplishment. It is a demanding approach to education for students who demand much of themselves. Engaged Learning takes place in the classroom, the residence hall, the community and all our off-campus and international programs. It is what characterizes a Lawrence education and distinguishes Lawrentians. Using this engaging approach to learning, Lawrence helps students develop the abilities that are highly valued by graduate schools as well as employers. Among these are the ability to solve problems, communicate effectively, work collaboratively and thrive in a rapidly changing world.

Lawrence is located adjacent to downtown Appleton, a vibrant city of 74,000 (situated in a growing metropolitan area of 250,000) in which the community and the college benefit from one another. At the university, there are more than 75 student clubs and organizations to check out, as well as Division III sports teams that compete in the NCAA's Midwest Conference. All students, freshmen through seniors, must live on campus, whether in dorms, suites, quads or university-owned houses. The school has another campus on Lake Michigan, known as Björklunden Vid Sjön, where students can travel for retreats and seminars, as well as a center in London. Lawrence University does not offer any graduate degree programs. 

Quick Facts:

Small Sized
1,532 total undergrads
374 degree-seeking freshmen

$38,758 average financial aid package
95% of financial need met (average)

Tuition and fees: 
$46,101 in-state
$46,101 out-of-state


ACT or SAT: Optional
SAT Subject: Optional

Acceptance Rate: 
Somewhat selective
63% of applicants admitted

Test Score Average:
ACT: 26-31
GPA: 3.47



What it's about: 
This major prepares you to become a certified athletic trainer, a health care professional who knows how to prevent, evaluate, and treat the injuries and related illnesses sustained by physically active people. 

Is this for you: 
You might like this major if you also like: helping people; sports and competition; problem solving; science and medicine; physical exercise; working with people; tutoring. Consider this major if you are good at; caring/nurturing; organizing; persuading/influencing; teamwork or have a sense of humor; initiative; manual dexterity; physical stamina; verbal skills; writing skills. 

Career options and trends: 
High school athletic trainer; college athletic trainer; clinical athletic trainer; industrial athletic trainer; professional sports athletic trainer; medical sales representative. Very strong job growth is projected through 2022, mostly in the health care industry. The desire of employers to reduce worker injuries and insurance costs is also fueling demand for athletic trainers. Fitness and recreation sports centers continue to provide many new jobs, and opportunities are emerging in the armed services and performing arts. Because of the growing awareness of the effects of sports-related injuries on young athletes, demand for athletic trainers is expected to increase in high schools, colleges, and youth leagues. However, many high schools require a teaching license in addition to the athletic training certification, and high-profile colleges and universities, as well as professional sports, have limited turnover.