If we are honest with ourselves, I doubt any of us chose to pursue the MA or MAHR program because historians are in high demand, making six-figure salaries. Our own school places the majority of efforts (after football) on the STEM programs. We are here because we have a passion for history that we hope to someday be able to translate into a purpose (job). The MA or MAHR is a tool that can be used to show a certain level of dedication to a potential employer and also serves as a means to set us apart from those who only have a BA. Is it a guarantee of future employment, either in history or outside of the field? Of course not, but it is one way I can give myself a leg up on the competition in the job market.
As with last week’s readings, I found the ones from the AHA to be the most beneficial as they moved beyond the job titles and buzz words to provide more detail on what a position in those various areas might look like. This information provides a bit of a roadmap for students to help tailor their education to their future goals. It’s easy to get caught in the academia vs. museum mindset so it is helpful to see the variety of possible careers that draw on history.