3 Unexpected Careers for a Political Management Major

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The global political climate is continually changing. With the reality of expanding technology and changing economic and ecologic resources, there has never been a greater need for professionals who understand the politics of change.

Beyond leadership development and a strong knowledge of the political infrastructure, professionals with political management backgrounds employ skills that impact more political spaces than are typically spotlighted. There are an ample variety of career options for political management degree holders. Here are just three:

City Planning

Political management graduates are uniquely situated to make a difference in the day-to-day lives of citizens in cities around the world. Primarily working to answer questions about the safety, livability, development, and expansion of living spaces, city planners with experience in political management are equipped to analyze and interpret data to aid in making decisions about land, people, and urban spaces and influence the development of local policy.

With two-thirds of city planners working in local government, those seeking a career as city planners ensure high levels of influence and potential to contribute to the transformation of the communities they serve. With an average salary of over $60,000 a year,[1] city planners not only contribute to the common good, but set themselves up in a lucrative field with many resume building opportunities and spaces for advancement, particularly in government.

Activism, Advocacy, and Organizing

With a strong grasp of political systems and structures and how they affect the day-to-day experience of people and places, activists and organizers seek to create positive changes through less typical social change mechanisms. Those who are uninterested in being confined to traditional avenues of social change, or are particularly concerned with being leaders and agents in the transformation of social and political systems might find the career of an advocate or organizer particularly intriguing.

With most of their time spent in communities, in the streets, and lobbying other political agents, activists are the most familiar with the issues and experiences of people in communities. They offer critique and change plans from the perspective of the people and generate creative mechanisms for initiating social change. While an uncommon career choice, career organizing and activism has historically brought significant transformation and continues to bring light to dark issues in the modern day.


For the more historically minded political management graduate, becoming an archivist is an exciting option. Archivists work as the seekers and preservers of historically and socially significant documents. As the data-using version of a curator, archivists spend their time researching, processing, and interpreting information into more permanent- and in many cases- more accessible records. Since the rise of the technology boom, archivists have played a particularly vital role in preserving and organizing historical data to make it more available and accessible for future governments, groups, and academics.

The meaningful work of an archivist also sets professionals up to actively contribute to museums, historical sites, campuses and university as well as a variety of other public and private spheres. Being at an average level of job access growth,[2] archivists have space in the job market to contribute to the common memory of the places that they work and, as such, can create meaningful change behind the scenes by enabling other communities to access information for political and social change.

With many unique job opportunities to pursue with a degree in political management, graduates have the opportunity to enter into a vast spectrum of fields depending on their interests and passions. They are few among many, and with the flexibility and marketability of the leadership skills gained from a political management program, graduates are set on a socially significant and gratifying career that positively alters the communities within which they work.


Urban and Regional Planners

BLS: Archivists, Curators, and Museum Workers