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Back when I was in college, one of the first classes I took was with a New Jersey history professor. When we had our first class, he told us about how he chose a doctorate in New Jersey history, and how his parents "basically expected him to live in their basement forever."
The general consensus in society seems to be that history majors only really have one career track they can choose from, teaching. Even my own career advisors had, at one point, told me that.
Had I known back then that this wasn't true, I wouldn't have switched majors to software engineering and lived in my own personal hell for three more years. I also probably wouldn't have dropped out, but rather just graduated at 19 with a degree.
Back then, no one told me how many government jobs for history majors there were out there. But, if you're a history fan, you might want to reconsider that accounting degree. After all, these positions are still vacant throughout the states.
Have you ever wondered what it'd be like to be a member of the same team James Bond worked for? Well, if you're an intelligence analyst, you're about as close as you can get.
Intelligence analysts are people who are hired to interpret moves done by other governments and tell government officials what can be done to gain control of situations that require delicate maneuvers to handle.
When the government is trying to figure out how to better ties with other countries, it's political analysts and intelligence analysts that help them out. Being an intelligence analyst happens to be one of the more prestigious government jobs for history majors out there — and as such, is a high-competition field.
A typical intelligence analyst will earn around $77,000 per year.
Many of the cushiest government jobs for history majors involve nationally-sponsored museums. After all, there's nothing quite as relaxing yet exciting as being surrounded by the most coveted historical artifacts throughout the day.
Curators are also in charge of creating publications, curating research, and develop concepts for exhibitions that showcase specific aspects of global history. If this sounds fun to you, it should. For many history majors, this job is a dream come true!
Quite a few of the biggest museums are government sponsored, including the Smithsonian. So, this is definitely a job that will get people impressed with your title.
Museum curators can expect to earn anywhere from $40,000 to $103,000 — depending on the museum they work for.
Believe it or not, the US government actually hires people to be full-fledged historians for the military branches as well as for state-funded groups. This is not because there's been a law passed to provide a set number of government jobs for history majors, either.
It's actually because the US government really does take its military history very seriously. Most government historian roles are given to military members who just so happen to have history degrees from college. So, if you are a veteran, this is a role you may want to apply for.
Government historians earn around $51,000 per year.
Love the outdoors, and love your local history? Well, one of the best government jobs for history majors in the making happens to be that of a park guide. Park guides often are hired to help keep our national and state parks intact, or to help teach people about the history that made those parks national treasures.
Park guides do not get paid a lot of money, primarily because these jobs tend to be given to people who are still in college. That being said, some college grads do take this job because of how nice it is to live in the outdoors.
At around $14 per hour on a national average, it definitely pays a lot better than retail. However, some better paid guide jobs exist and will pay around $16 per hour for recent grads.
If you are a history major who really gets a kick out of watching Indiana Jones, you might want to hold onto your hat! One of the more anthropology-based government jobs for history majors you might see on the USAJobs board is a staff Archaeologist.
Yes, you can be paid a nice salary with benefits — all for digging up the past, literally. Archeologists often work hand-in-hand with government paid anthropologists and state universities to help uncover artifacts of the past. It really doesn't get cooler than that, does it?
A typical archaeologist salary will range from $48,000 to $72,000 per year. So, it's definitely not a bad gig.
One of the more important tech-based government jobs for history majors is being a conservator. Conservators work to aquire and preserve artifacts, documents, and photos that are at risk for wear, tear, and theft. More often than not, major museums like the Smithsonian will hire them.
In some cases, conservators might not know a good method to preserve artifacts well. In these cases, it's their job to figure out how to do it safely, create a proposal on how they'll do it, and then do it.
Without conservators, a lot of the greatest works of art and most important historical discoveries would have been ruined by too much light, air exposure, or hands touching them.
A conservator makes around $40,000 to $80,0000 per year, depending on where they work.
Now, I know that this is a whole list about government jobs for history majors, and I know how this looks. However, the university route isn't just a public and private sector, you know. There are universities that are used by government officials and military colleges that need professors too.
History professors at military universities get a pretty nice paycheck, benefits, and the added perk of not having to work all year round. Sounds great to you? It does to us too. It gets even better when you remember that college professors also have the possibility of tenure, too.
College grads with a Master's degree or a Ph.D in history-related fields can expect to be paid around $74,000 per year.