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Getting Started

Thinking about careers means thinking backwards, really—starting by projecting yourself in the ideal first job, then figuring out how to get there.

Thus, the guide works backwards also, describing the technical skills (analytical, qualitative, statistical, field methods and writing, etc.) you can develop as a Anthropology major. You should think about what the job market is in the area you are interested in, what the entry-level requirements are for professional jobs in that field, what courses you should take to prepare yourself and what extra-curricular activities (volunteer work, internships, part-time jobs) to seek in order to enhance your marketability.

The notion of the marketability of skills may sound a bit too vocational for many college students. View it more as a way to take your coursework seriously, to shape your academic career so you can do what seems most worthwhile or challenging to you after you graduate. Even if you change your mind about your life's direction (as many of you may), at least you will have built up some coherent sense of what you're doing with your brief time as an undergraduate. While an undergraduate, you have the opportunity to develop skills and methods of problem solving which will be invaluable in any vocation you choose. Your course selection, approach to course work, and job-hunting are integrally related. One way to get a job is to develop a professional interest in a field or set of public issues or public policies. By "professional" we mean systematically developing your background, knowledge base, skills and contacts over a two-to-three-year period so that by the time you approach the job market you will have the confidence that can only come from knowing what you know—and don't know—about your chosen field. Knowledge, enthusiasm, confidence in your skills, and a good academic record are the keys to getting that vital first job.

  • Anthropology Department
  • McElhaney Hall, Room G-1
    441 North Walk
    Indiana, PA 15705
  • Phone: 724-357-2841
  • Fax: 724-357-7637
  • Office Hours
  • Monday through Friday
  • 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
  • 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.