Careers in Sociology

Meet Some of Our Graduates

At UVM, Sociology is similar to other liberal arts degrees. The skills you acquire are transferrable to many fields. A liberal arts degree equips students to do research, write and read critically and analytically so they can be trained for any kind of work. That said, many public or nonprofit agencies, governmental bureaus, and community programs hire students with specifically sociological training, as do organizations that need people with skills in sociological methodology and social statistics. Our students sometimes work in human service agencies, but also go on to Masters in social work programs, law school, and many other fields.
Find More Information: Check out our Sociology Alumni Facebook page to see what some of our graduates are doing. For some general information about careers for sociology students, see What Research Skills Do Sociology Undergraduates Take into the Labor Market? (PDF) by William Erskine and Roberta Spalter-Roth, and What are they Doing with a Bachelor's Degree in Sociology? (PDF) An ASA Research Brief by Roberta Spalter-Roth and Nicole Van Vooren.
Other careers: Of course, you do not need a graduate degree to make use of undergraduate training in sociology. Many businesses, public or nonprofit agencies, governmental bureaus, and community programs hire applied sociologists, as do organizations that need people with skills in sociological methodology and social statistics. For example, one of our students took her knowledge of aging and used it to create an award-winning home care agency with offices throughout Vermont. Other careers our students have pursued include becoming Chief of Staff to a member of the U.S. House of Representatives; a paid union organizer; a commercial real estate developer; a staff member for a foundation that provides free knee & hip replacement surgeries for people in need; and more.
Graduate Education: Many UVM Sociology students go on to many different kinds of graduate education. Our students have gone to law school, medical school, social work, and more. For those interested in medical school or related careers, starting in 2015, the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) will have questions about the field of sociology; UVM recommends Soc. 001 to all pre-meds, and there are many other courses in the Department relevant to a career in medicine. The Department also offers a minor in Gerontology, the study of aging.

Some of our best students – including our own faculty members Jennifer Strickler (UVM BA, summa cum laude, 1984) and Alice Fothergill (UVM BA, magna cum laude, 1989) – have gone on to get PhD's in sociology or related disciplines such as Social Welfare or Organizational Behavior, and now teach and do research in universities.