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Food for thought: Potential career paths for humanities graduates

Promising futures lie in store for humanities graduates! Source: iam Se7en/Unsplash

Many of those who’ve studied humanities subjects at university – including English Literature, History, Philosophy or Art – feel entrance to the working world is a daunting leap. You move from examining the world from a broad perspective during your studies, to specialising in a more niche field for your next career move. And with little experience, how should you know what to choose?

Well don’t worry – studying the humanities means you’ll have acquired a range of highly desirable and transferable skills, from critical thinking to analysis, and even creativity. The added benefit of studying internationally will give you a heightened worldliness and a great sense of globalisation, as well as perhaps a second language, cultural awareness and sensitivity. These skills will help you identify your ideal career. 

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Whilst humanities graduates have long been sought after in teaching and the arts, it’s clear that these skills are becoming more desirable in the business world. The broad approach to humanities studies – for example, examining intertextuality or how geography has affected our history – may give you a competitive edge.

Here we will examine a few possible career paths to get you thinking:

Politics

Have you ever thought about a career in politics? Your humanities degree is a testament to your work ethic, creativity and aptitude at processing and analysing information – all skills that would be useful in a political career.

And you wouldn’t be alone – according to research, 60 percent of the UK’s leaders have humanities, arts or social science degrees, compared to 15 percent who studied STEM-based subjects at university. So, many of the skills you’ve picked up will be transferable into the political sphere!

Journalism

With your excellent grasp of grammar and cultural sensitivity, you could be the next hard-hitting journalist. Whether you’d rather be on screen or writing for a paper, make the most of your acquired skills through a career in journalism.

In fact, well-known British TV journalist Louis Theroux studied Modern History at university, carving out a career for himself by making documentaries about the extremes of the modern human existence. You too could find your journalistic voice through the humanities.

Diplomat

Your broad grasp of the world, networking and problem-solving skills would prove particularly useful in a career as a diplomat. You would be particularly desirable if you speak languages, or have studied abroad during your degree, as you will have been representing your country whilst living overseas.

You must be flexible and able to adapt to new situations, as well as communicate clearly in foreign countries and perhaps even languages during potentially stressful situations. The cultural appreciation you’ll gain from your studies could lead to excellent international relations and peace keeping.

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