Career Pathways

An Arts & Humanities degree offers many valuable skills and career options, which can be both thrilling and overwhelming. This page provides step-by-step guidance to help you strategize for your future career no matter which path you choose.

Explore Possible Career Paths

Consider Your Skills

The liberal arts are designed to teach broadly transferable skills which can be applied to a wide range of careers, and which are in high demand among employers. Some of these skills include:

communication, research, foreign language and cross-cultural knowledge, analytical thinking and problem-solving, creative out-of-the-box thinking, ability to make an effective and persuasive argument, ability to build strong relationships, flexibility

Learn about Career Areas

Because Arts and Humanities majors are not designed to prepare a student for a single occupational field, students have unlimited options after graduation. Berkeley Career Engagement helps enrolled students and alumni explore their options and pursue their career goals. Here are just a few professional areas you might consider:

Art and Design:

Graphic design, creative direction, museums and galleries, user experience/interface design, fashion design, advertising, web design, illustration, photography


Management, sales, public relations, communication, market research, human resources, consulting, training and development, proposal writing/management


Teaching, counseling, research, administration, student services, library services


Public affairs, research, policy analysis, translation/interpretation, foreign service, intelligence, diplomacy, law enforcement, special interest advocacy

Health & Medicine:

Medicine, dentistry, optometry, pharmacy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, health administration, medical and bioethics, genetic counseling

Law & Public Policy:

Corporate law, nonprofit or public interest law, mediation, lobbying

Media & Communications:

Advertising, public relations, journalism, film, tv, radio, social media, blogging, corporate media relations, translation/interpretation


Performing, conducting, composing/arranging, music libraries, broadcasting, audio technology, sound engineering, recording, talent acquisition, music therapy


Administration, research, grant writing, development/fundraising, programming, volunteer coordination, youth ministry, translation/interpretation


UX research, product research, design research, content strategy, content design, UX writing, technical writing, product management, human resources, talent acquisition, DEI consultancy, brand strategy, ethics research, public policy research

Theater & Performance:

Performing, directing, set design, stage management, production, script/play/screenwriting


Journalism, technical writing, creative writing, grant writing, publishing, editing, content strategy, copywriting, translation/interpretation


After developing the right skills, networking is the most important measure of success in any career. A good network will not only help you figure out the career path that’s right for you; it will also help you land opportunities, get referrals, and find mentors that will contribute to your success. Here are some easy steps to do it well.

  1. Sign up to the Creative Careers mailing list to learn about career events sponsored by the Division of Arts & Humanities.
  2. Form connections with fellow students across academic disciplines. Take an interdisciplinary Course Thread and explore student-led organizations

  3. Tap into online networks. Update your LinkedIn with your latest interests and skills and look at what jobs are being recommended to you by the algorithm. Explore job and internship listings on Handshake. Sign up for the mailing lists of organizations that you’re passionate about and can envision yourself working for after graduation.

  4. Informational interviews are a great way to have a conversation with individuals in careers you are interested in. These are informal, exploratory conversations – not job interviews. The objective is not to find job openings but rather to speak with someone working in a field of interest. Check out these helpful tips from Berkeley Career Engagement.

Internships, Service, and Engagement


An internship allows you to learn more about a field you are interested in, develop your academic skills in a professional work setting, and gain a competitive edge in the job search.

To get started, explore internship listings at Berkeley Career Engagement. There are also a number of campus programs, including (but not limited to):

  1. Berkeley Global Internships Abroad in business, management, marketing, education, media and communications, etc.
  2. UC Berkeley Transfer Student Center internships in operations, outreach, programming and social media
  3. UC Berkeley Public Service internships in policy, direct service and organizing
  4. Othering & Belonging Institute Summer Fellowship on issues relating to marginalized groups and transformative change

Service & Engagement

The Berkeley Public Service Center brings together students, faculty, and communities to harness their collective wisdom in support of social justice, civic engagement, and transformative social change.  The Center builds student leadership skills, helps students find their passion and purpose, enhances the capacity of our community partners, and lifts up the public service mission of the University. This page walks undergraduate students through their resouces.

Consider Graduate School

If you’re considering a master’s or doctoral degree, it’s important to consider the value that an advanced degree will bring to your life and to your career path. Here are some resources to help you think through the decision and prepare to apply to a program.

  1. Step by Step is a resource for UC Berkeley students to enrich your undergraduate academic experience and to prepare you for graduate school

  2. This page from the career center has some useful information about graduate school

  3. Getting into Grad School (GiGS) is a mentoring program for first-generation, historically underrepresented and other diverse students

  4. The Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowshiptargets students with exceptional academic promise in the humanities or social sciences and potential for academic careers that will contribute to diversity and equal opportunity in the academy. The program supports Fellows by providing mentorship and the environment and resources to strive for the highest academic goals.

  5. L&S offers Pre-Professional Graduate Programs Advising to help you explore your interests and consider how to prepare for applying to graduate school.

Resources for Current Graduate Students

Graduate Division

GradPro is pleased to be a welcoming resource for your professional development needs. View our Professional Development Guide for resources on writing, teaching, mentoring, communication, research, data analysis, leaderships and management.

Beyond Academia

Beyond Academia is a non-profit organization run by UC Berkeley graduate students with the goal of empowering graduate students and postdocs to expand their career options beyond the traditional academic track. It accomplishes this career education through a series of events including an annual conference, workshops, tutorials and panels that connect academics with those who have made a transition to non-academic jobs.

Imagine PhD

Imagine PhD is a free, online resource to explore career possibilities for PhD students in Humanities and Social Sciences.

"I use the training I received through the Spanish and Arabic language programs at Cal every day as a medical student."

Mackenzie Cater, UC Berkeley alumna

"Now I work in public relations for start-ups, and I also do some marketing and social media. From my Comparative Literature classes, I learned communication and writing skills which I’ve learned are in very high demand in the workplace right now."

Sam Bleiberg, Comparative Literature alumnus