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A future in Speech
By Jennifer Bailey
Nearly every career requires excellent communication in writing and speaking. Agility and adaptability in communication are important to clearly share a vision to others no matter the issue or cause.
A degree in speech prepares you for a wide variety of career possibilities. Employers highly value solid communication skills in their employees. Businesses rely on people who represent them in presentations, on the phone, in front of clients and customers and in the media. Excellent and effective corporate communications, marketing and public relations are vital to the success of any business.
Speech majors can find jobs in many different fields, including speech-language pathology, journalism and public relations. Speech-language pathologists work with people who have physical problems speaking. Journalists need excellent communication skills in order to create both written news stories and scripts for live TV. Public relations managers work directly with people and need great speech skills so they can think, act and talk off the cuff while managing an employer's public image.
Speech majors learn excellent verbal communication and critical thinking skills that are required in many fields, such as law, public relations, writing, education, business, health, government, sales and human resources. Specific jobs available to you with a bachelor's degree in speech include a broad range of professions including acting, political campaigner, speech writer, labor relations specialist, public relations officer or even as a trainer who helps others to improve their own public speaking abilities. You might also consider pursuing a career in advertising sales. All of these professions involve effectively delivering information to large audiences.
So, do you love to analyze topics and express ideas? Are you naturally curious? Are you outgoing and well spoken? Do you enjoy writing and are you good at articulating your thoughts on paper and verbally? Can you work with a diverse team of people and are you a problem solver? Do you like the idea of shaping public perceptions? It is important to be a critical thinker, a problem solver and have logical reasoning skills as these are all necessary traits for a person in this career field.
A bachelor's degree in speech is essential in pursuing most careers including law, business, education, journalism or writing. An advanced degree will open even more jobs to you, such as lawyer, judge, executive officer, newscaster, professor and advertising director.
This program focuses on the scientific, humanistic and critical study of human communication in a variety of formats, media and contexts. It includes instruction in the theory and practice of interpersonal, group, organizational, professional and intercultural communication; speaking and listening; verbal and nonverbal interaction; argumentation and persuasion; technological communication; popular culture and various other applications. You will also take courses in psychology, human behavior and business administration, office management, political science and marketing topics. Regardless of completed coursework, college graduates generally also complete some on-the-job training or internships to develop excellent writing skills, learn to work well on a team, develop a portfolio of writing samples and ad campaigns and gain experience with conflict resolution techniques.