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What can one do with a degree in religion or religious studies?

The last few semesters, I have taken a few courses outside of my major and found that I rather enjoy the religion and mythology based courses that my university offers. It has been brought up to me by my professors that a religion degree is offered, and while I have looked into it a bit, I was wondering if anyone knew what I could do with this degree upon graduation? Is there more than just a personal value to it? Would a minor be a better solution?Thank you!
#undergrad #religion #college #religious-studies #spirituality #theology

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Zach’s Answer

Speaking as a Religious Studies graduate, this is a great question! I majored in Religious Studies and got my minor in Business Administration (to help balance things out). Pursuing a minor in Religious Studies may be a good option if you have a specific career in mind that you'd like to focus on for your major.

I struggled for a long time on deciding what to do with my degree. In the 10+ years since I graduated, I've found that the skills I built while getting my degree has applied in ways I didn't expect at first. In college, the classes I took really taught me how to critically analyze information, even when it was being presented in a non-analytical manner. I learned to consider external and unwritten influences to build context and uncover the "why" of statements. I also learned how to productively compare differing pieces of information, which has helped me with project management in finding common ground when multiple parties have a stake in the execution of said project. I'll also say that in my experience, it has been a great conversation starter in interviews since it stands out on a resume.

All of that is to say, even if you don't find a direct application of a Religious Studies degree, there are invaluable skills you can learn while pursuing it. Think not just about what you've learned, but the process you went through while learning. Those are the skills you can apply more broadly. It's not always a straightforward path and is definitely not for everyone, but there are some incredible takeaways you can find in getting a Religious Studies degree if you get creative in your application of skills.

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Rich’s Answer

It is a good major to prepare one for a career in law.

Thank you for your answer! But, how so? Ashley H.

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Kristin’s Answer

I loved my religious studies classes while I was in college. I took many as electives that eventually turned into a minor. There are so many opportunities other than becoming a pastor. Many bigger churches today offer many support staff and lay worker positions. Chaplains and support staff also work in hospitals, nursing homes, and other care facilities. Religious media such as television, radio, and social media avenues could also be useful. Either route you decide to take, these programs will help you grow yourself, your religion, and in your community.

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Simeon’s Answer

I would agree with the potential to get into a chaplaincy program for the degree. Hospital chaplains earn about 50k these days and is a source of reliable and steady work. I would recommend getting the religious programs degree as a minor. There isn't much in the way of getting a job off of the degree by itself. I have a business undergrad and a Masters of Divinity and the business degree has been very helpful in getting hired, while I have yet to succeed in getting a job related to my religious degree. Often, it's more about who you know than about the degrees themselves anyway. Broader degrees give you more flexibility in finding your own path forward.

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Arun Kumar’s Answer

Your qualification with a degree in religion can help you in seeking job opportunities in religious institution, many of which are also charity type. If you love 'giving back', you will love the job.

The degree can also help in jobs in social media where religion related programs are aired/telecast

Thank you so much for your response! I had not considered the social media and broadcasting aspects that could be tied back into this work. Ashley H.