It’s not uncommon for students to ask the CareerLAB counselors some variation of the question “What kind of jobs does my concentration make me eligible for?”
Your first job post grad and your career trajectory aren’t limited by your concentration.
Look no further than the CareerLAB’s 2012-2020 Post-Graduate Data and you can see an English concentrator who got a first job at Google, an Economics concentrator who started out as marketing intern at RCA Records, and a CS concentrator starting out as a Librarian at George Washington University.
While it’s true that some concentrations are tightly-linked to first jobs — many CS concentrators start out as software engineers, many Applied Math-Economic concentrators start out in finance or consulting — that linkage gets looser over time as you can see from the Data Visualization tool that tracks industries where concentrators ended up 10 years after graduation.
For most employers, your concentration and academic track record are just two of the elements they are considering when they are evaluating your resume or cover letter or talking to you during an interview. Two other elements they’ll be curious about include how you spent your time outside of class on campus and how you spent your summers.
Most employers will be evaluating you to see if you have the raw skills and interests in their field or organization to make you a good fit. Read job postings closely to see what skills employers are looking for. Chances are the posting will include many of the skills that employers tell the National Association of Colleges and Employers they are looking for in resumes of recent graduates, including:
Ability to work in a team, problem-solving skills, analytical/quantitative skills, communication skills (verbal), communication skills (written), Initiative, leadership, technical skills, flexibility/adaptability and strong work ethic.
CareerLAB’s professional Career Counselors can help you think about your skills, interests, values, strengths, needs, AND your concentration to generate ideas for fields and jobs that you’re curious about and then help you tell employers about the skills and interests that make you a good fit.
Ready to get started? Consider making a one-on-one appointment with a career counselor to talk things over and make a plan.