What Do Baylor History Majors Do With Their Degrees?

February 19, 2024
Student History Class

Part of my job as the Undergraduate Program Director for the Department of History is meeting with prospective students and their families when they visit campus. In our meetings, I answer any questions they have about the History Department and Baylor more broadly. Undoubtedly, the question that I get most often is: so, what do people do with a History degree?

It's a valid question. Unlike nursing or engineering, the B.A. in History is not a vocational degree. It’s not designed to turn every single History major into a professional historian. Rather, it’s a skills-based major that is designed to give students analytical and communicative tools that they can then apply to a wide range of careers. We think that’s an asset. In an age when most people switch careers multiple times throughout their working lives, having a broad base of reading, writing, and thinking skills will provide the flexibility to move into different professional environments and be successful.

But, the question remains: what do Baylor History majors end up doing with their degrees? Thanks to data from the Baylor University Office of Institutional Research, I’ve put together a snapshot of how our graduates have used their educations in History. Here are some of the highlights:

  • 33% of our graduates end up working in the private sector. Private sector jobs range from positions in banking and finance to technology and energy. Most of our majors, moreover, end up in management positions — no surprise considering the communication skills that History majors develop while at Baylor.
  • 23% of our students go into education, both in K-12 and higher education settings. I like to think that this is the direct result of students growing to love learning and wanting to share that love with others.
  • Around 17% of our students end up in law. Again, this is not a surprise considering how many students we send to law schools (and, I might add, very competitive law schools) each year. History prepares students for the type of thinking and reasoning that lawyers employ in their practices every day.
  • The rest of our graduates end up in a wide range of jobs and professional sectors. They work in everything from non-profit organizations, museums and archives, and ministry positions to politics, civil service, the military, and healthcare. There is perhaps no better confirmation that the History degree prepares people for a wide range of careers than that.

If you want to read more about what Baylor History majors end up doing with their degrees, you can check out our forthcoming pamphlet, “What Can You Do with a History Degree?” which will be posted on the History Department’s website soon. 

Daniel J. Watkins
Associate Professor
Undergraduate Program Director
Department of History
Baylor University