Major and Careers

<p>I want to major in International Relations and learn Chinese and finish learning Spanish. What kind of careers can I obtain with an IR major?</p>

<p>Let</a> me google that for you
lol couldnt help it</p>

<p>Haha, wow. I know what some of the careers I can get. I was wondering other ones. Not just government type. Although I would like a job at the government, I want to keep an open mind of other careers. Can I get my degree in IR and then go to Law School?</p>

<p>you can pretty much get any degree and then go to law school but I have a few friends that are doing just that.</p>

<p>Here are some others I found:
Foreign Affairs Analyst
Foreign Affairs Specialist
Foreign Service Officer
Immigration Specialist
Intelligence Specialist
Language Specialist
Market Research Analyst</p>

<p>I think the Diplomat and Journalist sounds pretty interesting.. Yet, I do not see an IR major becoming a journalist since it's getting very hard to become a journalist..</p>

<p>Diplomat is a generic term for people working in the State Department or any other government employee working overseas that interacts with other governments, typically a Foreign Service Officers come to mind.</p>

<p>Those aren't walk in positions. They will require relevant work experience and other strong credentials.</p>

<p>If you become fluent in Chinese, you would have lots of business opportunities waiting for you. It's a good skill to have. </p>

<p>While an IR major certainly could become a journalist, a IR degree itself won't allow you to become one. Just like anything else, journalism is a career that needs to be built in baby steps. So if you are interested in being a journalist, go find out what opportunities exist at your student newspaper.</p>

<p>This actually brings up a good subject.</p>

<p>An IR major is a prime example of a "general" degree that won't prepare you for any single job or provide hard skills. So people in these majors need to figure out what job they want, then find ways to combine the needed skills into their major.</p>

<p>So if an IR major wants to be a journalist, they better start taking courses in journalism, writing, and finding ways to get writing experience through their student newspaper or other local publications.</p>

<p>The list provided by hahahaha, is good, but an IR degree itself won't qualify you for any of those positions. The degree is just a minimum requirement, what you need to have to get the job is the skills required to perform the work.</p>

<p>So I would need to probably get internships during college or find jobs after I graduate and build up to it?</p>

<p>^ You'll definitely need to be doing as many internships possible. Not only will that give you a better idea of what kinds of jobs are available, but it will also give you the job experience and connections you'll need to land a job after graduation. So just remember that with an IR major you can't afford to have wasted summers. You need to either be interning or working on your language skills (or both) every single summer you're in college. And during the school year, look for activities where you can also build skills like Debate, newspaper, Model UN, the campus Democrat or Republican club, Amnesty International, etc.</p>

<p>^Thank you! I already know that I want to do a club that involves Tae Kwon Do because my concentration would be Asian studies. I would definitely join the Debate team if there is one because I love Speech and Debate. And the newspaper would be a good opportunity too especially if I decide to go with Journalism as a BA major or minor. The top 2 schools I'm looking at have a B.A/M.A where I can get my masters and bachelors in 5 years. I might do that if I get accepted to either American or GWU. But I still want to minor in dance, so I'm not sure..</p>

<p>If you want to study IR I would discourage getting your BA and MA in five years. What is much better is if you work for a few years after you graduate and then go back for your MA or get your employer to help you pay for your MA. If you graduate with an MA in IR in 5 years without much real work experience (outside of internships) you're going to be over-qualified academically for most entry level positions but way underqualified for the positions that require Master's degrees because you lack the neccessary real world experience that every position will want. </p>

<p>For some fields it makes sense to go to grad school right away. For IR the best thing is to wait.</p>

<p>Well I wanted to really do that 5 year thing. Should I get my BA in IR and the masters in something else?</p>

<p>I think it's really too early to decide what you should get your Master's in. You really need to get work experience so you can find out what kind of Master's degree will be the most beneficial, as really the main purpose of getting a Master's is to advance your career in practical ways. Plus you'll probably get to college and realize that you don't want to get a Master's when you graduate, you may want to go to law school or become a dancer or join the Peace Corps or do any number of things. It's frankly a waste of time and a waste of money (since if you wait you could get an employer to pay for your Master's degree). </p>

<p>Everyone thinks when they're in high school that they'll go to graduate school right after undergrad, because school is the only life you've ever known so going all the way through to your Master's degree make sense, and is a comfortable, predictable response to the question of what you'll do after college. Not many people in the final shake out do end up going directly to graduate school and what you hear from those who did is often that they wished they had waited until they knew what they really wanted to do/had more experience. A huge part of graduate school is what you bring to the class, your pracitcal work experience that you share, and the experiences of your cohort. You learn much more from each other than you do from the professors and classes, unlike in undergrad where you're primarily learning in traditional teacher-student formats. Those that go straight to grad school without those work/life experiences have less to contribute and they also gain less from others. </p>

<p>It's your life, and you're going to do what you want to do. But if you're serious about an international relations career and you want to have an easier time finding a job after graduation, I would wait. And for what it's worth, this is advice from someone who landed an international relations job at the top of her field of study with the US Government right out of undergrad, so I know something of what I speak.</p>

<p>I'm kinda on the fence on this one,</p>

<p>The thing about the government is that BA/MA's are just check marks on an application, minmum requirements that really don't matter a whole lot.</p>

<p>A MA will allow you to get hired at the GS 9 level, compared to a GS 5 or 7 with just a BA. It's a nice bump in pay, but it's not enough money to make a MA really worth it, because if you were hired at a 7, you will become a 9 in a short time anyways.</p>

<p>However, if you can get your MA in only 5 years - I'd do it. I took 5 years just to get my BA, and it didn't make any difference - but, the MA might not help you all that much, so you need to make a practical decision.</p>

<p>The problem with waiting for an employer to pay for your MA is that you might not get an employer who will. Or it may take 5 years for you to land with an employer who will pay for your MA, at which time you may have 2 kids and not enough time to go back, or some other reason.</p>

<p>Personally, I'd get an MPA over a MA in IR. That will help you out more in your career.</p>

<p>I know your goal is to work in government, so you gotta remember what government is - inefficient, unorganized, bloated and backwards. The best workers don't always get rewarded or promoted, and the best talent isn't always hired. It's an odd system that caters to people who aren't really ambitious. It's nothing like the private sector. The qualities that are praised in business can often cause you to be reprimanded, it's totally bizarre.</p>

<p>Like I said, I'm on the fence. If it's only one more year and your parents are paying for it (and can afford it), I guess I'd do it, just don't have any unrealistic expectations.</p>

<p>Not to many people are going to get hired doing direct IR stuff right out of college, so more than likely you are going to have to gain experience elsewhere before catching your break.</p>

<p>I'd just go join the military after college. That way you get the experience and they will pay for your school.</p>

<p>Also, what worked for me was graduating with my BA is Poli Sci, getting some work experience, then I got a PostBA Certificate in a skill that was needed (GIS).</p>

<p>It wasn't nearly as costly, time consuming or cumbersome as a graduate program and it gave me a valued skill that I could share with employers. I thought about getting my MA, but I'm glad I didn't - because it would have just been more of the same. </p>

<p>I'm not big on general MA degrees. I think MBA/MPA is the safest route.</p>

<p>Is that business? MPA?</p>

<p>MPA is Master of Public Administration.</p>

<p>It's basically a MBA (Master of Business Administration) for public sector work.</p>

<p>It really all depends on what you want. Start looking at job postings on and look at the hiring requirements.</p>

<p>If you can preview the KSA's (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities), then you will get a good idea of what kind of work experience you need to qualify.</p>

<p>What exactly is that? Public administration? Does it involve a lot of math? I'm good at math but I do not enjoy it at all. I enjoy writing if it involves that then I'm good. I'm on my phone so I can't really research a lot about it.</p>

<p>This should give you a good start.</p>

<p>The</a> Trachtenberg School - MPA Program Fields</p>

<p>Not very math intensive.</p>

<p>Would I be able to do that BA in IR and MA in Public Administration? If I get into AU or GWU?</p>