5 Great Degrees for those Seeking a Career in Public Office

Working within federal, state and local governments is highly desirable. Not only is the government one of the largest employers in the country, it also offers far greater job security than the private sector.


There is a wealth of opportunity within government and the chances are, regardless of your field of expertise, there is a job that would be suited for you. However, if you have a desire to work in government and are considering your future education, you may wish to look at this list of some of the best degrees that will enable you to break into the public sector.

1. Accountancy

A general accounting degree will open doors to pretty much any department controlled by the government. Accountants and auditors are always required to manage accounts and statements. For those of you fascinated in the movement of numbers, you may even wish to work as an investigator to help expose white collar crime within the government.

2. Economics

Having total awareness of how and why resources are distributed for goods and services is essential to understanding the market both locally, nationally and globally. If you have the capacity to carry out data analysis, see patterns and trends in the markets, inflation and interest then you would be an invaluable resource to most government departments. Many economics graduates go on to become analysts within the government. At the very top level, you’ll find many people with a master’s in economics working in the White House.

3. Public Health

There are many routes into government via public health and it seems there is a greater number of applicants for these courses every year. This is mainly down to accessibility of the course and applicants opting to take a public health degree online. Many of the positions open to those with public health degrees are to do with prevention rather than treatment, and include jobs as varied as: Health educators, disaster preparedness coordinator and hazardous waste inspectors.

If you wish to do a masters in public health online you may find yourself already making connections within government departments like the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). As a good example, check out the MPH degree students at The University of Arizona who released a report about flu season from the CDC. With a master’s degree you could find yourself working with the CDC as a public health advisor or analyst.

4. STEM Degrees

Degrees in science, technology, engineering and math have always been greatly sought after by government departments and with a good master’s you can pretty much choose the career path you would like to explore. Whilst agencies like NSA and CIA usually conjure up images of spies and field agents, computer scientists, mathematicians and engineers are always in high demand.

5. International Relations

The global market is more significant now than it has ever been, so an understanding of the politics and policies of other countries is vital to many government departments. As a graduate of international relations you are far better prepared to deal with diplomacy and ensuring that countries work amicably together. Whilst the U.S. foreign office would be the most desirable place to work for graduates, there are many positions an international relations graduate could fill that involve trade, public relations and human resources to name but a few.

The important thing to take away from this is that you do not limit your options when choosing a degree. There are dozens of career paths you can take to ensure the government position you want.

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Richard Morris

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