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Jobs in the field of History

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  • broderickwells
    replied
    Network, man, network!

    Ask your professors, visiting scholars, anybody and everybody. 90% of job offers come from who you know, not what you know.

    Leave a comment:


  • MV64
    replied
    Originally posted by LtCol View Post
    I recently was interview for a English Comp paper by a Freshman on this very subject.
    History degrees are useful in any field or profession that requires the gathering and analysing of data. My first job offer upon graduation was with the CIA to study field reports. Also museums, historic sites, in need of managers almost always require a history degree. I have a friend that went to work for a oil company to study areas the company was planning to drill in for any historic data.
    Lawyers often have history undergraduate degrees before going for a JpD. Also "real' media people will study history as a way to learn how to gather information.
    The question then is, where would you find such jobs? Looking around online...there just aren't many that don't require 10 years experience and a Ph.D. And where would one find a job like finding historical data for drill sites? I hear a lot about these jobs but have never seen anything advertised history-related that wasn't teaching or a high-ranking government position.

    Leave a comment:


  • LtCol
    replied
    I recently was interview for a English Comp paper by a Freshman on this very subject.
    History degrees are useful in any field or profession that requires the gathering and analysing of data. My first job offer upon graduation was with the CIA to study field reports. Also museums, historic sites, in need of managers almost always require a history degree. I have a friend that went to work for a oil company to study areas the company was planning to drill in for any historic data.
    Lawyers often have history undergraduate degrees before going for a JpD. Also "real' media people will study history as a way to learn how to gather information.

    Leave a comment:


  • MV64
    replied
    Sorry to resurrect an old thread, but I hope things worked out for the poster.

    I, too, will be graduating with BS in History and Political Science (dual major) in December.

    I, unfortunately, am stuck in the middle of Michigan, where history is nonexistent. There are very, very small historical societies (I interned for one two summers ago) that don't ever do any hiring. In fact, my local one just fired a bunch of people due to cuts in funding.

    Anyone know how I can find work in Michigan? I am willing to move eventually, but I have to raise the money first. I plan on looking for work around Philly, DC and Virginia (I've seen many jobs posted there, but they require years of experience, etc.) So for the moment I need to stay in Michigan.

    I'm postponing going for my Masters at my undergrad due to financial considerations. I plan on getting one, but I might wait a year or so to see what actual skills I can develop in the real world.

    I've looked into the traditional things: Editing, research, teaching, and there's nothing around here. Not just that there aren't jobs but Michigan doesn't seem to have many places that would hire historians even in good times.

    Everything else I could do (archiving, public polcy) seems to require a separate Master's degree. I'm going to try to intern at a local law office to try to become a legal assistant or paralegal. I currently work retail and I hate it, I need to try something else.

    I'm also going to volunteer again at my local historical society and try to stay longer and do more things to develop skills and network more.

    Things are so bad that I volunteered at the historical society in my hometown about thirty miles a way and they turned me down. They had no work for any more volunteers. Who turns down volunteers? Especially ones who have had experience doing museum work before?

    Well, sorry for the rambling, but I'm a little worried. Does anyone have any suggestions for me that I could do to help better my chances of getting a job later on? Recommendations for what I should get a Masters in someday (History, Public Administration, LIS or something for records management?)

    Even better, is anyone from Michigan who knows specific places I could check out for potential jobs related to history or politics?

    Oh, I've also looked into working in Lansing at the Capitol, but those are all unpaid internships and it's an hour and a half drive for me to get there...not really feasible.

    Anything with researching as the emphasis would be preferred.

    Thanks for any input, guys!

    Leave a comment:


  • Slug
    replied
    Originally posted by Paul Mann III View Post
    My History prof. has a Masters, and he's stuck teaching community college...
    Here are some other ideas.
    • pro bowler.
    • pro gambler.
    • open a pizza parlor.
    I have known two guys that bowled a lot, and made a few bucks at it.
    Gambling? Isn't craps the best odds at winning in Vegas?
    I have heard of guys betting on sports in casinos and making a living.
    Pizza Parlors can make bucks too.

    Leave a comment:


  • Paul Mann III
    replied
    My History prof. has a Masters, and he's stuck teaching community college...

    Leave a comment:


  • Dallas
    replied
    I've got a degree in history with a minor in political science. I wish you luck in finding a paying job that doesn't involving teaching. Most museums and government agencies won't even talk to you without a Masters degree (I live in the Washington area and believe me I've tried) and there are enough PhD types out there that even a masters is no garuntee of a decent shot at a good research job. One of my friends with a history degree has gone on to law school and does legal research for trial lawyers at one of the bigger law firms. I would suggest either law school, or get at least a masters or perferably a Phd. With a PhD you could at least teach at the college level. But remember if you become an academic you will be expected to produce on a regular basis those gawd awful extremely dry research papers and absracts (remember those) on a regular basis.

    Leave a comment:


  • Freightshaker
    replied
    You could also try finding work as an archivist. If I had gone for my degree, I was going to try that or write.

    Leave a comment:


  • Slug
    replied
    Originally posted by MonsterZero View Post
    You guys need a reality check.
    The first thing is to be pure.
    The initial reality is to realize that you have an interest in, and really love history.
    But that doesn't pay the bills.
    Originally posted by MonsterZero View Post
    A history major who wants to become a distinguished scholar and make an impact in the field of history and get a job needs a doctorate!
    Maybe.
    Maybe not.
    Studying history and taking classes can be a lifelong thing.
    You have a dayjob, and keep plugging away.
    That's what teachers do.
    Some guys I know have a Master's in U.S. History, and teach part time at night at Long Beach City College. They feel good that they are teaching in college, but that's a long day, remember, you taught five high school classes first. Time to eat out of a vending machine.
    Originally posted by MonsterZero View Post
    Nothing less is acceptable.
    Maybe.
    Maybe not.
    It's nice to have goals, but everyone needs a backup plan.
    If you aren't a tenured professor at a four-year university, you are a failure?
    Very few make that level.
    But I'm happy to say, there are some nice satisfying jobs to be had along the way.
    Originally posted by MonsterZero View Post
    If you love history getting a doctorate is a piece of cake
    A piece of cake?
    • Clark County Nevada wants and needs teachers.
    • Court schools need teachers.
    • History majors become teachers.
    • My Degree says, United States History. That's what I teach.
    • You become a teacher and fan out. Guys to to law school, get real estate licenses, post at ACG, whatever. Many teachers take classes at night. What's new? That's how you get ahead. And you are paying your bills.
    Last edited by Slug; 17 Apr 08, 22:22.

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  • MonsterZero
    replied
    Originally posted by Emil_G View Post
    I have a degree in Sociology w/a minor in History....

    Good luck finding a job, bro.

    I work a crappyish job in adult foster care. Very loosely related to my field of study, definitely not a career.

    Not a lot of luck with applications anywhere else.
    You guys need a reality check. I'm graduating with a B.S. degree in nursing in a couple weeks and this is a second of my two baccalaureate degrees. What's special about nursing is that it's one of the last undergraduate degrees remaining in America where you can stop your education at a baccalaureate degree and then have something resembling a career afterwards. For most other careers a Masters is the new minimum. In healthcare within 10 years or so a doctorate will be a new minimum for most positions forcing nurses to upgrade to a masters as the new minimum (nursing education minimums tend to lag behind other professions such as medicine, physical therapy, pharmacy, etc.).


    A history major who wants to become a distinguished scholar and make an impact in the field of history and get a job needs a doctorate! Nothing less is acceptable. If you love history getting a doctorate is a piece of cake and it will be fun although it will be a long process so don't count on it as a quick way to give yourself a raise.

    There are 24 year olds working on doctorates that I know personally and they are not rocket scientists. They do what they're told but they're no Nobel winners.
    Last edited by MonsterZero; 17 Apr 08, 21:44.

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  • HiredGoon
    replied
    I have a B.A. in Public History and have been searching for a history job for a quite awhile. The real entry level jobs where they don't want 3-5 years of experience are also almost always part-time or seasonal. Look into the NPS. There are some entry level jobs (only require a B.A.) for park ranger interpretation positions at some of the historic parks. Check out state historic parks too. These usually don't require experience, but they're only seasonal jobs. A lot of living history museums hire seasonal interpretors too. Otherwise, the only way to gain experience is to volunteer at a museum. And then there's the fact that most permanent career jobs in the history field (like a curator or museum director) require at least an M.A. and 3-5 years of experience.

    Leave a comment:


  • PatBC
    replied
    Remember video games are surpassing movies in revenue generated. Dale Dye has a successful business being an military historical advisor.

    The future of the best paying jobs is the information field not things like manufacturing. History is information. You might also start looking in historical magazines or talk to your professors for ideas.

    Leave a comment:


  • Paul Mann III
    replied
    Colonel Antal

    Originally posted by Emil_G View Post
    I would seriously wonder if there is even 40 hours/wk worth of work in a job like that. I mean what do you do? Look at some drawings and say "This knight doesn't look right" ? Can't the artist just buy an Osprey Warrior book for $15.99 or something? Why pay another guy a salary? From how horribly historically inaccurate most video games are I would conclude that such a position is not very popular w/ game companies, and besides historical reality = reality = not fun for the hoi polloi video gamer.
    Take a look at John Antal. West Point, Ranger, Tanker, veteran combat leader at several levels, 30 years in, retired as G-3 for an Armored Corps.

    He advised on the "Brothers in Arms" games, and it was approved by the History Channel. He took great lengths to teach the programming team about tactics, making them attend Feild Exercises to understand the moves they were programming. Brothers in Arms: Earned in Blood" was also used in the War Sim Center at West Point, according the extras in the game (which are all great). It comes with AAR's on the fights you play in, to demonstrate what the historic link is, and the story is good too.

    Oh, and he used to work for Armchair General...

    Leave a comment:


  • Emil_G
    replied
    I would seriously wonder if there is even 40 hours/wk worth of work in a job like that. I mean what do you do? Look at some drawings and say "This knight doesn't look right" ? Can't the artist just buy an Osprey Warrior book for $15.99 or something? Why pay another guy a salary? From how horribly historically inaccurate most video games are I would conclude that such a position is not very popular w/ game companies, and besides historical reality = reality = not fun for the hoi polloi video gamer.
    Last edited by Emil_G; 15 Apr 08, 10:21.

    Leave a comment:


  • SoccerDJ
    replied
    Originally posted by Emil_G View Post
    haha "historical consultant for video games" sounds like one of those dream jobs, you probably need to know someone to even get an interview
    yeah thats what I said to, it would be awesome but nearly impossible to get into

    Leave a comment:

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