For college graduates everywhere from Cabrini to California, the hot-button topic is what to do after graduation. Should one immediately test the waters of the job market, or should they further their education at graduate school?
Graduates with degrees in history and political science are no different. History and political science majors face a multitude of options they could pursue after graduation.
“As is the case with most majors, the job market is somewhat tough,” Dr. Darryl Mace, associate professor and chair of the history and political science department, said. “What we’ve found is many of our recent graduates (over the past 2-3 years) have been working in fields that aren’t necessarily tied to their degree. It’s not too uncommon for history, political science and American studies majors to do that anyway.”
One possibility that exists for graduates of the history and political science department is obtaining a teaching certification, allowing them to teach history at a primary or secondary level.
“You could go into secondary education and become a social studies teacher,” Mace said. “That job market is recovering at this time.”
Cabrini offers a process of several steps for a graduate seeking a teaching certification, beginning with an application as well as a $50 non-refundable application fee. The candidate must have a bachelor’s degree in any major from an accredited university with a grade point average of at least 3.0 and must provide official transcripts in an institution-sealed envelope. The candidate also needs a letter of recommendation from a professor or an employer, and a one-page goal statement.
“Most of the students go out into the job market and teach in a private school setting, or they spend a year as a part-time or full-time substitute,” Mace said, “or they enter into a full-time job market. It’s not that jobs aren’t there; its just there are stepping stones to jobs.”
Another possibility that exists for political science majors is a path towards law enforcement. According to Mace, students have the option of double majoring in political science and criminology to progress on a path towards a career in law enforcement, such as for the FBI or the CIA.
“We have a lot of students who have aspirations for the FBI and CIA, and those jobs are still hiring, at least until sequestration happens.”
Students also have the possibility of furthering their education in law school. According to Mace, “out of last year’s class, we actually have five out of the graduates that are actually enrolled full-time in law school.”
While testing the waters on the job market is still a possibility for history and political majors, it’s fair to say that moving on to graduate school is the more popular option.
“It’s fair to say a majority of our graduates will go to graduate school is some shape or form,” Mace said. “The majority of our history majors also do secondary education.”
The Co-Op and Career Services office in Grace Hall keeps track of what students do after graduation. Statistically, last year was not any different than years in the past.
“I think the figure is within six months, at about a rate of 75 percent, our graduates are enrolled at school or are employed full-time,” Mace said. “That’s in line with what seems to be the trend over the past couple of years for the numbers coming from Co-op and Career Services.”
History and political science graduate from Cabrini do have a variety of options, whether or not they want to go directly into the job market, go on to graduate school or law school, or even obtain a teaching certification to become teachers themselves. However, graduate school seems to be the more popular option, so graduates can further and continue their education.
“We do have a lot of students go on to graduate school. It’s not a matter of the economy, they just want to go on to graduate school,” Mace said.