Career Development The Major-Career Connection

The Major-Career Connection

At this point you might be saying, “Okay, I get it. I own my career. And I get that having a sense of purpose is important so that I know what kind of impact I want to make and therefore might find my work meaningful. And I get that I need to be flexible and able to pivot, and that employers care about more than just my technical or subject matter knowledge. But can’t C2D2 or someone in my College just tell me what career paths I can do with my major and what kinds of jobs I can get or graduate programs I can apply to?” The answer is yes. And no.

The career paths for some majors are quite clear cut: the chemical engineering grad who goes to work as – you guessed it – a chemical engineer in a traditional arena such as pharmaceuticals or petrochemicals. But what about the chemical engineer who goes on to law school and becomes a patent attorney? Even majors with clearly defined paths have more career choices than you might think.

Or, what if you are majoring in a subject you have a passion for, such as literature, but you don’t see clear cut career paths other than grad school or teaching, which might not be your thing? Well, Georgia Tech students who major in Literature, Media, and Communication are tech-savvy, creative, problem-solvers who are in-demand for a wide range of positions in business and industry, from marketing, to project management, to corporate communications and more.

Those are only a couple of examples of majors and the careers they can lead to. The bottom line is that we don’t want you to get too hung up on exactly what one does with a major in X, Y, or Z. If you are majoring in a discipline that you’re interested in studying and have some aptitude for, opportunities will present themselves and you’ll be able to discern which ones interest you. Every major at Georgia Tech has traditional career paths and graduate or professional school options that unfold naturally from it. And, every major has non-traditional paths that will emerge or that you can create as your interests and talents develop.

Resources to help you discover career options, as well as for the other career objectives outlined in this Real Talk about Careers section are described in the remainder of this unit.


All materials in this section are licensed under Creative Commons BY-NC 4.0.