The Realities of the Historian Career Market

Doom and gloom, that seems to be an underlying theme in many articles that discuss the potential job market for historians. While other professions may have the greater potential for a larger job market, it seems to me that many individuals who have spent the time and money to acquire a degree in a field such as history are there for their passion. The downside to going for one’s passion is it does not guarantee you a job. I think that is why many of the professors at Boise State promote students, especially history students, to think outside the box when it comes to how to apply your career and yourself to the career market. On the upside of the doom and gloom theme present in some of the articles that discuss it, they did show predictions in job growth in line with other professional fields. Some of the issues present in the career field for historians are issues that we have discussed in class. One being how the potential number of applicants often outnumbers the level of openings present within the market.

One of the greatest benefits that this week’s readings gave was what it potentially took to obtain and maintain a job in the field of history. These articles serve as catalysts to prepare those with an interest in obtaining a job in the field of history. It discusses education, training, and experience. The articles even go into what potential employers seek for in their future employees. Reading these articles shows how important it is to project oneself out into their desired field of employment. Through active participation, history graduates can gain the necessary experience to work in the field through internships and volunteering. Also joining history societies shows potential employers a desire that the individual displays for history. I think when you start to vigorously pursue your career in history, you must be realistic about it. It is highly doubtful that one will obtain their dream job or dream location for a job right away, but having the knowledge of what must be done in order to obtain your dream prepares oneself to undertake the journey to achieve it.

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