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Get a Rewarding Job

Many of our majors don’t want to go to graduate school, or they want to work for a while first. The skills that you learn as a Sociology major – including “critical thinking,” data analysis, and the ability to evaluate and write about quantitative and qualitative evidence – are in high demand in the labor market.

Among our 2015 and 2016 graduating seniors who planned to work after graduation, 88% said that their knowledge of sociological theories/ideas/topics helped them to get their jobs, and nearly 70% said that their research skills and knowledge of sociological methods (e.g., statistics, network analysis) helped them to get their jobs.

Other students said that the writing skills they developed in Sociology courses were particularly helpful with getting jobs and internships. A recent graduate said:

“Being a sociology major, I have grown exponentially as a writer, researcher, and thinker. I want to go into a public relations career where all I will be doing is writing, and the interview processes for it have required writing tests, which has been my greatest strength. I… attribute that to the Sociology major and the incredible professors I have had.”

The Career Services unit of the College of Arts and Sciences is the primary source for advice on getting a job. They also compile statistics every year on careers of recent Cornell graduates.

For more information about careers with a sociology major, you could consult the results from an American Sociological Association (ASA) survey of about 1,800 Sociology majors who graduated in 2005, with a follow-up in 2007. Findings from the survey are reported here. Keep in mind that the students in the ASA data are from thousands of colleges and universities; Cornell students tend to fare much better in the labor market than the typical US sociology student.

The ASA offers other resources for undergraduate majors, including advice on searching for jobs with an undergraduate degree in Sociology and a guide to careers with an undergraduate degree in Sociology. Copies of the guide are available in the Sociology Department.

Read on for more information about the major.