Unlike other practical degrees that prepare students for specific industries, a humanities degree is a theoretical degree equipping students with skills such as problem-solving, effective communication, presentation, and reasoning out of informed ideas.
Questioning your degree’s worth is normal, and we are here to tell you why your humanities degree will be worth it.
This article explores top jobs in humanities and their salaries to guide you in making the right decision.
Best Careers In Humanities
Humanities focus on helping students develop valuable transferable skills rather than preparing them for a particular industry. As such, you might be confused about what career options humanities majors have.
A bachelor’s degree in humanities offers a range of career options for students to choose from. With the many valuable sets of skills that you will gain during your studies, you can find a job in sectors such as social work, media, education, journalism, business, and even healthcare.
Do you want to know more about the career options for humanities majors? Let’s explore the top 11 careers in humanities.
Human Resources Specialist
Human resources specialists are an essential part of the success of a company. They recruit and interview new candidates. HR specialists also deal with current employees and handle training, benefits, policies, and compensation.
A humanities degree equips you with all the necessary skills to succeed as an HR specialist. A list of the skills for a successful career as an HR specialist looks as follows:
- Strong work ethics
- Organization skills
- Decision-making skills
- Communication skills
- Problem-solving skills
The average annual salary of an HR specialist is $63,888. This is only for those with less than four years of experience in the field. Those with more years of experience as HR specialist make up to $70,562 annually.
As a social worker, you will work with government agencies or other organizations to help people deal with issues such as divorce, substance abuse, and illness. You will be contributing to improving the overall condition of social life.
Social workers typically have a bachelor’s degree in social work. Although it may seem like a humanities degree does not relate to social work, such a degree can help you land a position as a social worker. A humanities degree provides a deep and clear understanding of people and human nature. Furthermore, through a humanities degree, you will gain essential skills such as compassion, communication, organization, and problem-solving skills, which are necessary for anyone who wishes to become a social worker.
The job of a social worker is quite a well-paid job. The average annual salary for a social worker in the US is $63,499.
Public Relations Manager
A public relations manager’s job is to maintain an excellent public image for the company and help establish its brand identity. The primary duties of a public relations manager include:
- Writing and editing press releases.
- Organizing conferences.
- Maintaining communication with the media.
Public relations managers respond to the customers’ concerns to maintain the company’s reputation. Moreover, a public relations manager helps the company benefit from the exposure. This exposure comes in the form of sponsored events.
Again, a humanities degree equips you with all the skills you need to understand and work with people. In addition, communication and good writing skills gained through a humanities degree are essential to landing a position as a public relations manager.
The average annual base salary of a public relations manager in the US is $120,418. The salary may vary depending on the city where you work, your education level, and, of course, years of experience.
Media specialists are responsible for communicating with the public and portraying a company in the best way possible. Their job is to understand the concerns not only of the company but of the people and work to gain the public’s trust.
Moreover, media specialists deal with press releases, political campaigns, conflict resolution, and employee relations. A humanities degree is perfect for teaching you skills to work with and understand people effectively.
Specific skills you gain in a humanities degree, such as creativity, problem-solving, communication, teamwork, interpersonal, and effective decision-making skills, are also essential to land and maintain a position as a media specialist.
The average annual salary for a media specialist is $51,688. The salary may differ based on the place where you work, your education level, as well as the experience you have.
Higher Education Administrator
If you are looking to make a change in the education sector, then consider becoming a higher education administrator. A list of job responsibilities of a higher education administrator looks as follows:
- Recruiting new employees
- Training staff
- Project management
- Working with teachers and students
- Managing budget
- Working with students
- Data gathering
- Data analysis
- Report writing
Higher education administrator is just another exciting job you can get with a humanities degree. You will gain all the necessary interpersonal, communication, organizational, and research skills to excel in this position through a humanities degree.
The average annual salary for a higher education administrator in the US is $77,000. The salary may vary depending on education level as well as experience.
Advertising Sales Agent
The job of an advertising sales agent is to promote the products and services of the company to potential clients. Although a high school degree is enough to land this job, a humanities degree is an excellent investment if you want to become an expert.
Being an advertising sales agent requires creativity and understanding of people, society, and culture. A degree in humanities will provide you with all the skills needed to understand humans and, through that, develop the best and most efficient advertising strategies.
The average annual salary for an advertising sales agent is $52,340. As an advertising sales agent, your annual salary can be as high as $125,370.
Healthcare Program Director
You can find a job in the medical field without having to go to a long and stressful medical school. With a degree in humanities, you can become a healthcare program director. A healthcare program director is responsible for:
- Managing budget
- Supervising staff
- Reviews safety regulations
- Updating licenses
- Regulating protocols
- Hiring and training staff
The set of skills needed to be successful as a healthcare program director includes the following:
- Strong communication skills
- Interpersonal skills
- Analytical skills
- Critical thinking skills
All these skills, alongside solid decision-making skills, being detail-oriented, and being a multitasker, can be learned and strengthened in a humanities degree and will make you a great healthcare program director.
As of 2023, the average annual salary for a program director is $87,820. And if you advance your education and have some years of experience, you can expect to get paid much more than that.
Although there are bachelor’s degrees in translation and interpreting, you can become one with a humanities degree. You can become a translator if you have learned a second language during your humanities studies.
Besides learning a second language, you will gain other important skills such as communication, listening, and reading skills that are essential to being an effective translator.
The average translator/interpreter in the US is paid an average salary of $49,110 annually. However, this may vary depending on one’s education level and years of experience.
A humanities degree is less of a practical degree and more of a theoretical degree. You will have to do a lot of reading, writing, and researching during your studies. Writing is a primary skill you will learn during your studies. All of this will prepare you for a job as a writer. You can also become a technical writer through the skills you gain as a humanities student. The skill to make it as a writer include:
- Research skills
- Organizational skills
- Communication skills
- Editing skills
- Analytical skills
The average annual salary for a writer in the US is $39,603.
A bachelor’s degree in journalism is typically required to become a journalist. However, a degree in humanities will also do the job. This degree will prepare you with all the necessary communication and analytical skills to become a journalist.
As a humanities student, you’ll learn how to analyze events and gather and verify data. Moreover, you’ll learn one of the most important skills of a successful journalist: effective storytelling.
The average annual salary for a journalist in the US is $45,155. You can expect to earn more if you have experience in journalism or if you have a master’s degree.
The primary responsibilities of an event organizer include managing and supervising hotel or restaurant staff for an event. An event organizer also maintains the budget required for a well-organized event. It can be anything from a wedding to dining. They also organize events for different companies and clients. Though the job might sound easy, it requires efficient planning and management skills. You can gain all these skills with a degree in humanities.
The average annual salary for an event organizer in the US is $55,789. However, this may vary based on your experience, education, and the city where you work.
What Is a Humanities Major?
Humanities is a major that covers a range of 4-year undergraduate majors. These majors include:
- Liberal Arts,
- Fine Arts,
Unlike career-focused degrees, a humanities degree is a theory and history-focused degree. Rather than focusing on developing industry skills, a humanities degree emphasizes equipping students with the ability to generate, organize, and analyze ideas.
Skills You Can Develop As a Humanities Major
Although humanities isn’t a career-focused degree, it still provides you with many important transferable skills that can land you a job in several fields. Here is a list of skills you can develop as a humanities major that can make you a great candidate in the eyes of new employers:
- Ability to read and comprehend information
- Ability to write effectively
- Ability to summarize and articulate ideas
- Ability to debate and think critically
- Ability to organize and present ideas
- Problem-solving skills
- Creative thinking skills
- Research skills
The Bottom Line
Now you are aware of the career choice you’ll have as a humanities major. All you have to do is think if you see yourself working any of these jobs in the future. If yes, we say go for it! We hope to have helped you make an informed decision with this guide.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: What qualifications are needed for a job in the humanities?
A: Typically, a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field is the minimum requirement, but many roles, especially in academia or research, may require a master’s or doctoral degree.
Q: What are the top jobs available for humanities graduates?
A: Humanities graduates have a diverse range of career paths, including roles such as public relations managers, technical writers, human resources managers, historians, and political scientists, among others.
Q: Do humanities jobs pay well?
A: Salaries in humanities jobs vary based on factors like location, experience, specialization, and employer. Some roles, especially those in higher education or specialized research, can be quite lucrative, while others may have modest starting salaries but offer potential growth over time.
Q: Are there job opportunities for humanities graduates in the tech industry?
A: Yes, many tech companies value the unique perspective that humanities graduates bring and offer roles in areas like user experience design, content creation, and human-computer interaction.
Q: What types of companies hire humanities graduates?
A: Humanities graduates are employed in a wide range of sectors, including education, government, non-profit organizations, private corporations, and media companies, to name a few.
Q: How stable are careers in the humanities?
A: Stability in humanities careers can depend on the sector. For instance, tenured academic positions offer significant stability, whereas jobs in journalism might be more susceptible to market fluctuations.
Q: What skills do employers typically look for in humanities graduates?
A: Humanities graduates are often valued for their critical thinking, communication skills, creativity, understanding of cultural differences, and ability to analyze complex information.
Q: Is advanced education beneficial for humanities graduates?
A: An advanced degree, like a Master’s or Ph.D., can often open up higher-paying job opportunities in academia, research, or specialized fields within the humanities.
Q: Are there opportunities for advancement in humanities careers?
A: Yes, many humanities professionals progress in their careers by gaining more experience, pursuing higher education, or transitioning into administrative or managerial roles.
Q: Are there freelance opportunities for humanities graduates?
A: Absolutely, many humanities graduates thrive as freelancers. They work as writers, consultants, editors, or tutors, offering their skills to multiple clients while enjoying the flexibility that freelancing provides.
Q: Can humanities professionals work in other fields?
A: Absolutely! Humanities graduates often possess critical thinking, communication, and analytical skills that are valuable in various industries, from business and tech to government and non-profits.
Q: How do humanities salaries compare with STEM salaries?
A: Generally, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) careers have higher starting salaries. However, experienced professionals in humanities can command competitive salaries, especially in leadership or specialized roles.