A Guide to Graduate Careers with A Humanities Degree

Career Advice
26 August 2019 | Career Advice | Guest Author

The kind of person who chooses to do a humanities degree is the kind of person who is interested in people. In understanding what makes them tick and why people do and have done things. Humanities is a subject which is usually studied by people who have an innate thirst for understanding society and this stands you in good stead for getting your ideal career when you graduate.

Unlike more vocational degrees, a humanities degree can arm you will all of the tools that you need to be able to choose a career after your degree, follow your passion and the best thing is that with those skills, you will also have options.


The Skills

Some of the key skills that you learn studying humanities that you can transfer into your career include:

  • Researching and analysing
  • Communication – especially reading, writing and speaking
  • Problem-solving
  • Developing arguments
  • Ability to work on your own or as part of a team

These can all be very useful in careers across the board, leaving you no end of career options. Some of these options include:


1.   Tour Guide or Manager

According to coach tour operators, Just Go Holidays, a tour manager is “that extra friendly face to welcome you and make sure everything runs smoothly. Knowing the areas that you are visiting, your tour manager can give extra information on the places of interest, as well as taking care of all the practical aspects of your holiday.”

This means that you need to be a great communicator, be able to understand what people want or need, be able to withhold interesting information, be organised and if you speak one or two other languages, this could open up even more doors for you.


2.   Sales and Marketing

Sales and marketing are at the sharp end of being able to understand about people. Without great people skills, an ability to communicate and a little persuasiveness, it would be almost impossible to sell something – even if it was the best product in the world.

And this is why a humanities degree would be extremely useful in a sales or marketing role. These skills are developed to a high level during your studies, you get to go into a sector that interests you, and, frankly, you can earn pretty good money too.


3.   Journalism and Writing

Journalism and writing are all about communication in their very essence. It is about being able to carry out research and communicate a story – whether it is news, an article about something important you people, or even fiction books. Presenting a story on TV, radio or the Internet can also be good options for people who are especially good at verbal communication, but a good knowledge of how media works today is also important.

To work in journalism or writing you don’t need a degree in journalism or writing, but you do need to be good at it, and good at networking. Do as much writing as you can, and don’t pass up any opportunity for networking that you come across. In journalism, it is very much about who you know.


4.   The Public Sector

Working in the public sector gives you the opportunity to be part of a system that keeps the country running properly. There are many opportunities for people with a degree in humanities. If you think that teaching is for you, a post-grad PGCE one-year course can be done to allow you to teach the subject of your degree.

You could also consider working as a civil servant for the government – they have a massive range of jobs that require team-work, analysis, great communication, research or the ability to present information.

Working in the public sector you often get decent holiday entitlement, pay which is secure and (generally speaking) competitive and good working conditions.


5.   HR

Anywhere that there are people working will require someone to look after them. That doesn’t mean making them tea and coffee, it means working in HR. HR or Human Resources are the people that ensure that all employees are treated fairly, that processes are met, that employee wellbeing is taken care of, and often recruitment.

To work in HR, you need to have a good mixture of human and personal skills, and also a mind for analysis and teamwork; also, an ability to work on your own, and to understand people quickly and accurately.

With a humanities degree in your pocket, you have the option to go into almost any industry that you wish to. With an understanding of people, great communication and an analytical brain you will have the skills to start a career in something that really interests you.

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