What Can I Do with a Degree in Psychology?

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Human Services

Areas

Counseling, Advocacy, Mental Health Services

Employers

  • Federal government, Departments of Health and Human Services, Justice, Veteran’s Administration
  • State government, Department of Human Services, Mental Retardation (community mental health centers, state Psychiatric hospitals facilities for mentally retarded), Justice (probation and parole)
  • Local government (senior citizens’ centers)
  • United Way agencies/local branches of national nonprofit Organizations (YMCA/YWCA), Goodwill Industries, Boys & Girls Clubs)
  • Religiously-affiliated service organizations

Strategies

  • Obtain essential practical experience
  • Find part-time or summer job, e.g., camp counselor, resident hall advisor
  • Plan internship or practicum placements for academic credit
  • Get volunteer experiences, e.g. hotline, Big Brother/Sister, Special Olympics, psychiatric hospital, service fraternity/sorority
  • Pursue excellent academic record
  • Become fluent in foreign language spoken by multi-cultural clients
  • Be willing to relocate
  • Obtain graduate degree for substantive counseling work
  • Become familiar with government hiring procedures

Administration

Employers

  • Federal, state, and local government
  • National headquarters and local branches of non-profit organizations

Strategies

  • Consider business minor or double major
  • Get experience in counseling or advocacy
  • Need masters in health care administration for advancement

Community Relations

Employers

  • Federal, state, and local government
  • Local branches of national non-profit organizations

Strategies

  • Obtain experience in counseling, advocacy, or administration
  • Acquire knowledge of community problems and government resources

Program Development

Employers

  • Federal, state, and local government
  • National headquarters and local branches of non-profit organizations

Strategies

  • Acquire experience in counseling, advocacy, or administration

Research

Employers

  • Federal government, especially Dept. of Health and Human Services, National Institute of Education, Office of Naval Research
  • National headquarters of non-profit organizations

Strategies

  • Develop strong quantitative and statistical skills
  • Obtain graduate degree for advancement

Human Resources

Areas

  • Employment & Recruitment
  • Compensation & Benefits
  • Labor Relations

Employers

  • Human Resources (Personnel) departments of companies
  • Employment agencies
  • Government personnel agencies and departments

Strategies

  • Acquire related experience as:Resident Hall Advisor, New Student tour guide or recruiter
  • Orientation Advisor, Admissions office

Public Relations

Areas

  • Research
  • Programming
  • Writing & Editing
  • Fund-raising
  • Media Placement
  • Public Speaking
  • Special Events

Employers

  • Public relations and advertising firms
  • Companies with in-house public relations departments
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Trade associations
  • Colleges and universities
  • Federal, state, and local government

Strategies

  • Develop strong writing and speaking skills
  • Obtain related experience with campus newspaper, TV, or radio, Admissions office as tour guide or recruiter, Student Activities office in planning
  • Activities office in planning
  • Serve as fund-raiser, political canvasser
  • Find internship through campus chapter of Public Relations Society of America

Advertising

Areas

  • Creative
  • Media
  • Account Services
  • Research

Employers

  • Advertising agencies
  • Companies with in-house advertising agencies or departments

Strategies

  • Obtain relevant experience with campus newspaper, TV, or radio
  • Work with student-run business
  • Find internship with member of American Advertising Federation or market research firm
  • Develop portfolio for creative positions
  • Plan business minor or double major for Account Services positions

Market Research

Employers

  • Market Research firms
  • Market Research departments of consumer goods manufacturing firms

Strategies

  • Develop strong background in
  • Become involved in American Marketing Association
  • Obtain related experience
  • Get part-time or summer field service
  • Experience with market research firm (see “Marketing Services” in Yellow Pages)
  • Obtain business research practicum experience
  • Become reporter for campus newspaper
  • Serve as canvasser/phone interviewer for charity or political campaign

Teaching

Employers

  • public and private schools

Strategies

  • Obtain teaching certificate for public school positions
  • Secure strong personal recommendations your school
  • Seek guidance from education department of
  • Volunteer as tutor

Retailing

Areas

  • Management
  • Buying

Employers

  • All major retail firms including: drug, specialty
    variety, department store chains

Strategies

  • Obtain related sales experience with part-time summer retailer, campus yearbook, or newspaper
  • Secure leadership position in campus organization
  • Find internship with individual or chain store

Sales

Employers

  • Companies, Real Estate companies, Retailers, Wholesalers, Manufacturers, Insurance

Strategies

  • Obtain Sales Experience