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A future in History
By Amber Gragert
Getting a degree as a history major means you are someone who loves studying and learning all you can about the past and how it might shape the future. Perhaps your long term goal is to go into law or education? It is one of the most diverse degrees and can lend itself to a wide array of career options because it touches upon all forms of human endeavors from arts and languages to science and economics.
College history is not typically built around textbooks or tests, but instead, it is the heart of historical study that teaches you to move beyond yourself and imagine other worlds materially as well as actual human existence and character. History is both a science and an art which blends the intentional study of evidence with compelling storytelling.
Having a solid knowledge of history is a powerful currency for our century. History increases cultural understanding and sensitivity. You will learn to take into account several different points of view and how that impacts the changing climate of our world. You will also learn how to collect, evaluate and arrange a wide array of sources into compelling arguments and narratives. By interpreting the past, you will better understand yourself. Those who know their history help to shape how people see themselves in the present and what they hope for in the future.
Studying liberal arts teaches you critical thinking as well as imagination, empathy and resourcefulness. You will learn how to do good research, evaluate evidence, communicate well, write persuasively, document thoroughly and problem solve effectively. Majoring in history teaches you how to learn for a lifetime. It teaches you not what to think but rather how to think.
It is worth understanding most history majors do not become professional historians; however, most go on to become lawyers, librarians, businesspersons, writers, archivists, researchers, teachers, politicians and even entertainers. To get your thoughts flowing about potential career avenues available to you with a history degree, consider using it to become a White House aide, a literary agent, documentary filmmaker, working for the US Justice Department, working for a congressional campaign or as management consultant. There are career fields in every industry, from business to the arts. Historical study plays an important part in fostering well-rounded intelligent people and instills valuable career skills in many areas.
Keep in mind companies want to hire smart, creative people and often value those with educational backgrounds that set them apart from the crowd, who have a well-rounded knowledge of the world and what brought us to this present day in history.