4 Adventurous Careers For Sociology Grads
In the current American job market, students graduating from college struggle to find any employment prospects. Many simply settle for any job that comes along in order to eke out a meager living, but recent grads do not have to sacrifice their dreams of adventurous careers forever. A bit of creative thinking and diligent research can lead to an ideal match.
The Challenge of a Liberal Arts Education
Unlike certificates from technical programs or degrees in education or the hard sciences (biology, chemistry, and physics for example) which lead clearly to specialized positions or research opportunities, bachelors of arts degrees in the soft sciences (like psychology and sociology) provide a wide variety of experiences and opportunities to broaden one’s horizons. Bachelors of Arts degrees deliver on the well-rounded education they promise but don’t necessarily provide a direct path to employment.
With these factors in mind, consider the following career possibilities as you walk across the stage to collect your B.A. in sociology:
A Mission of International Friendship and Understanding
As the study of social life and interactions between human groups and their interactions, a degree in sociology is the perfect preparation for community service. Those looking to help others and see the world should consider joining the more than 200,000 Peace Corps volunteers who have traveled abroad since 1961. Working in a developing country alongside indigenous peoples gives American volunteers a unique opportunity to apply their understanding of sociology. Beyond volunteering, the Peace Corps has a paid staff to recruit, train, and assist volunteers. This agency is a great place to begin a career in the federal government with a respectable salary and benefits package.
Planning for the Future
If you are interested in creating positive change in a specific city or town, consider becoming an urban planner. In addition to the ability to interact with groups of people, urban planners use computers and mathematics to determine the best way to use land and resources and solve problems of traffic congestion, trash, and pollution. A background in sociology prepares urban planners to work with a wide variety of individuals, as well as determining the effects of how groups of people work and live together. As the population in the United States continues to grow and cities expand, urban planners will be in great demand, suggesting a promising future for those interested in this career.
A Helping Hand for America’s Youth
For those graduates who want to concentrate on helping individuals, a sociology degree is a useful foundation for a child welfare worker or youth counselor. These careers allow a recent graduate to apply understandings of human interactions to aid young individuals. Supported by either state governmental agencies, including school systems, or private companies, the salary and benefits for these workers do vary greatly, but the opportunity to work with kids is fulfilling and meaningful.
The Potential of Research
Any recent graduate looking to apply sociological concepts to the real world should consider a position in research. Data analysts, market researchers, and census research assistants all examine the behavior of groups of people to extrapolate information for advertising, resource allocation, and future programming. Although research of this kind includes a wide variety of data and applications, examining the information with a sociological lens leads to social solutions.
A degree in sociology creates countless career possibilities. No matter what your interests, an employment adventure awaits.
Rob Hester is a youth counselor and guest author at Best Sociology Programs, where he contributed to the guide to the Top 10 Online Bachelor’s in Sociology Programs.