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What Can I Do With A Major In International Studies?

The International Studies major is designed to provide the student with an interdisciplinary approach to studying global issues that will contribute to a broadly based but critical understanding of our ever-changing global environment. Such an interdisciplinary approach will prepare the student to enter an increasingly interdependent and globalized world and effectively face the challenges that these developments bring to them as both an individual and a global citizen.

Possible Career Options

(Some may require further education/specialization)

Anti-Terrorism Intelligence Agent
Campaign Worker
Chamber of Commerce Manager
Community Relations Manager
Congressional Aide
Cross Cultural Trainer
Foreign Correspondent
Foreign Exchange Trader
Foreign Service Official
Foreign Service Peacekeeping Specialist
Government Intelligence Analyst
Government Service Executive
Government Worker
Humanitarian Relief Worker
Intelligence Specialist
International Lawyer
International Relations Specialist
International Student Adviser
International Trade Specialist
Labor Relations Specialist
Library Consultant
Military Officer
Missionary Worker
Newspaper/Magazine Journalist
Peace Corps Volunteer
Political Consultant
Probation/Parole Officer
Public Affairs Coordinator
Public Relations Specialist
Radio/TV Announcer
School Administrator
Social and Community Service Managers
Technical Espionage Intelligence Agent
Travel Writer
VISA Worker

Types of Employers

Private & Non-Profit Organizations

Advertising Agencies
Book/Magazine Publishing Companies
Civic Organizations
Collection Agencies
Community Arts Centers
Community Organizations
Consulting Firms
Cultural Organizations
Education Institutions
Historic Sites/Historical Societies
Insurance Companies
International Publications
International Visitors Councils
Labor Unions
Law Firms
Political Organizations
Professional Associations
Public Interest Groups
Public Relations Firms
Radio/TV Companies
Research Firms

Government Agencies

Department of Commerce
Department of Justice
Department of State
Drug Enforcement Administration
Federal/State Congressional Offices
General Accounting Office
National Archives and Records Administration
National Endowment for the Humanities
National Park Service
Peace Corps/AmeriCorp
Political Parties
Smithsonian Institution
US Agency for International Development
US Customs Service
US Information Agency

Transferrable Skills

General Skills
Understands and adapts programs, products and services to the cultural background of the audience
Becomes knowledgeable of other cultures, languages and institutions
Ability to analyze across cultural or national lines
Conducts and explains scientific research clearly
Communicates ideas to others
Focuses on the structure and function of the government and the necessity for human social order
Develops ability to adapt and appreciate others and their lifestyle
Gains and develops language skills
Understands and interacts with people who are culturally diverse

Problem Solving Skills
Thinks analytically
Evaluates problems and makes appropriate decisions
Analyzes concepts, definitions, arguments and complex problems
Organizes ideas, deals with questions of value, and extracts essential information
Distinguishes fine difference between views and discovers common ground

Persuasive Skills
Constructs clear formulations, good arguments and examples
Builds and defends views and appreciates completing positions
Persuades people and adapts to change

Communication Skills
Speaks articulately
Presents ideas through well-constructed, systematic arguments
Expresses a distinctive view and explains difficult material
Eliminates ambiguities and vagueness in communication
Constructs useful analogies
Writes interpretively, argumentatively and descriptively
Develops structure and technique while anchoring generalizations

Research Skills
Reads comprehensively
Organizes and interprets social, economic and political data
Summarizes complicated materials


Experiential Education

Completing an internship with a local, state or federal government agency

Volunteering with a humanitarian service organization

Studying a foreign language of a country you hope to work with in the future

Taking part in a Study Abroad or Cross Cultural experience

Professional Associations

American Foreign Service Association,

American Friends Service Committee,

Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs,

Foreign Policy Association,

International Studies Association,

Young Professionals in Foreign Policy,

Enhancing Your Employability

Join relevant student organizations to develop leadership skills

Participate in internships and field experience placements

Participate in a study abroad opportunity

Become active in alumni and/or mentor networks

Plan on a graduate degree for advancement

Take part in mock interview opportunities

Source: NC State University

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