5 High Paying Careers For Someone With A History Degree

History Degree Jobs That Pay Well

  • Marketing
  • Attorney
  • Historian
  • Teacher / Professor
  • Project Manager

“Don’t get a history degree; employers won’t be impressed by a bachelor of arts.” This common piece of advice couldn’t be more wrong. A bachelor’s degree in history gives key skills in critical thinking, writing and research. These skills can lead to big paychecks, as these five high-paying jobs for history graduates show.

1. Marketing

For graduates willing to go the corporate route, a career in marketing can be extremely lucrative. History degree jobs in marketing can be found at large corporations and tiny boutique firms. Either way, these history majors will enjoy big paychecks and the chance to use some of their academic skills. Marketing success requires a carefully researched understanding of the target audience, and history majors excel at careful research.

2. Attorney

Lawyers need sharp writing skills, strong rhetorical abilities and a willingness to scour documents for tiny details. Most history graduates fit that description perfectly. Because studying history involves a massive amount of reading primary documents and writing about them, it’s one of the best degrees for lawyers. Law schools think so too. According to the Law School Admission Council, history majors have one of the highest admission rates out of all applicants — 86 percent of law school applicants with a history degree were accepted in 2016.

3. Historian

While it’s rare for professional historians to pull in a six-figure income, they still command a respectable middle-class salary. For history majors who want to stick close to their academic roots, working for a museum, archive or university as a historian is a smart move. These roles typically require an M.A. in history; more elite roles can demand employees with doctoral degrees. Historians conduct research, publish their findings and help the public understand the importance of the past.

4. Teacher/Professor

Some history majors burn with a passion to educate others on the true reasons for the fall of the Roman empire or how the Islamic Golden Age shaped modern mathematics. For these dedicated individuals who question how they can turn their love of history into a career, teaching is the answer. High school teachers devote themselves to sharing history’s lessons with tomorrow’s leaders, while professors split time between teaching and conducting research. Both career paths offer good pay, excellent benefits, and fulfilling work. Professors typically earn more, but it’s easier to become a secondary school teacher.

5. Project Management

There’s no such thing as a degree in program management. That means hiring managers for these positions are open to applicants from many academic backgrounds. History majors can turn their long nights in the library into a high-paying job by pursuing this route. Project managers must be highly organized and capable of motivating others to keep projects on track. They can work at non-profits or Fortune 500 corporations. An internship, senior thesis or leadership role in an on-campus group can help demonstrate project management skills for history majors.

History majors don’t have to settle for crumbs from the employment table. With the right planning and an open mind, students can find history degree jobs with great pay, great benefits and great job satisfaction.

Related Resources:

Brenda Rufener

Julie McCaulley

Carrie Sealey-Morris