Careers in Philosophy

What can I do with a Philosophy degree?

“What do Ricky Gervais, Ethan Coen and the former Pope of the Catholic Church (Benedict XVI) all have in common? Yep, you guessed it, they all studied philosophy at university.”
QS Top Universities, March 2, 2015

Most Philosophy majors do not pursue a Ph.D. in Philosophy but go into the job market instead. Top choices are in law, medicine, writing, counseling, education, government and management. And salaries for Philosophy graduates are ranked 1st (tied with Math) in the percentage growth from early to mid-career!

Top fields are in those areas that require refined critical thinking and problem solving skills, and strong writing, verbal and analytical skills.

View some career options using interactive tools via UC San Diego's Career Services Center.

Alumni Career Examples:

Cory Evans

  • Cory Evans, Philosophy Class of 2007

Diplomatic Advisor and Professor. Former positions include 

    • Political Analyst for the Consulate - General of Japan in New York
    • Assistant to the Ambassador, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
    • Adjunct Lecturer at Baruch College, New York
    • Researcher and speechwriter for New York Congressman

He also started his own hedge fund, The Wickford Group. 

  • Francis LamFrancis Lam, Philosophy Class of 2008
    UC Berkeley School of Law 2011

“My Philosophy major really helped me excel in law school. So much of legal education and practice is about one’s ability to read, analyze, and write.  … After reading, analyzing, and arguing about the works of Kant, Nietzsche, and Hegel, legal opinions and legislation seemed like a piece of cake.”

Some famous Philosophy majors:

Recent Tech Leaders

Peter Thiel, co-founder of PayPal
Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn
Stewart Butterfield, co-founder of Flickr
Patrick Byrne, CEO/founder of Overstock.com

Sciences

Isaac Newton
Albert Einstein
Albert Schweitzer

Politics

Carly Fiorina
Carl Icahn
George Soros

Arts & Culture

Stephen Colbert
David Foster Wallace
Leo Tolstoy
Wes Anderson
Bruce Lee

Politics

Thomas Jefferson
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Rudy Giuliani
Booker T. Washington
George Stephanopoulos

Articles of Interest:

We don’t need more STEM majors. We need more STEM majors with liberal arts training.
Washington Post

That 'Useless' Liberal Arts Degree Has Become Tech's Hottest Ticket
Forbes / Tech 

The Unexpected Way Philosophy Majors Are Changing The World Of Business
The Huffington Post by Carolyn Gregoire

The Earning Power of Philosophy Majors
The Atlantic by Bourree Lam

9 Famous Execs Who Majored In Philosophy
Business Insider by Max Nisen

Staff Contact
Nancy E. Guerrero
Undergrad Program Coordinator
Phone: (858) 534-3077
neguerrero@ucsd.edu

Advising Hours: M-F
9-11AM and 1-3PM