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Page Index:Philosophy

Academic Information: -  top

What is Philosophy?  top

Philosophy is both a way proposing and interrogating the meaning of human life as well as an intellectual discipline that fosters the best thinking possible in its students. Far from an idle discipline asking "pie in the sky" questions, philosophy seeks to find the truth about to the most controversial and challenging questions available. The best example of how seriously philosophers value the truth is the Ancient Greek philosopher Socrates, who was so committed to challenging the thinking of his time that he was executed for it! Though our faculty and students have (so far) a perfect record in managing to avoid Socrates’ fate, we do pride ourselves in carrying on his tradition of asking basic questions that require examining the meaning of human existence.

Career Information  -  top

Possible/Typical Job Titles -  top


  • Policy analyst*
  • Foreign service officer
  • City solicitor*
  • Consumer protection advocate*
  • Legislative assistant
  • Public defender*
  • State legislator
  • Public health officer*
  • Mediation attorney*
  • Speech writer


  • Human services coordinator*
  • Teacher*
  • Professor*
  • Community development liaison
  • Court liaison*
  • Affirmative action officer
  • College administrator*
  • Editor
  • Experiential educator
  • Job counselor
  • Librarian*
  • Psychologist*


  • Pastor
  • Church Secretary
  • Guidance Counselor
  • Priest
  • Claims Adjuster
  • Hospital Administrator
  • Producer/Director
  • Clergy
  • Insurance Underwriter
  • Columnist
  • Journalist
  • Psychologist
  • Public Policy Manager
  • Religious Education Teacher
  • Salvation Army Worker
  • Public Relations Rep
  • Religious Researcher
  • Seminary Administrator
  • Public Service Official
  • Religious Staff Writer
  • Social Worker
  • Rabbi
  • Religious Educational Admin.
  • Systems Analyst
  • Religious Bookstore Worker
  • Sales Representative
  • Technical Writer
  • Church Camp Director
  • Fund-raiser


  • Artificial intelligence expert*
  • systems designer
  • Consumer relations representative
  • Economist*
  • Underwriter/claims adjuster
  • Genetic counselor*
  • Information broker*
  • Computer programmer*
  • Computer systems analyst*
  • Human resources manager
  • Journalist
  • Marketing researcher
  • Technical writer

Non-Profit Organizations

  • Community organizer
  • Fundraiser
  • Clergy*
  • Graphic artist
  • Association public relations director
  • Biomedical ethics researcher*
  • Grants administrator


  • Administrative Assistant
  • Consultant
  • Lawyer
  • Announcer
  • Counselor
  • Lobbyist
  • Arts Consultant
  • Credit Analyst
  • Management Analyst
  • Assistant Buyer
  • Critic
  • Management Trainee
  • Associate Pastor
  • Customer Service Rep
  • Marketing Research Analyst
  • Author
  • Denominational Executive
  • Minister/Youth Minister
  • Business Administrator
  • Diplomat
  • Minister of Music
  • Campus Religious Coordin.
  • Director of Religious Education
  • Missionary
  • Campus Minister
  • Editorial Assistant
  • Newswriter
  • Chaplain
  • Employment Interviewer
  • Nursing Home Director
  • Church Building Engineer
  • Financial Consultant
  • Paralegal

*Denotes need for additional education.

Typical Places of Employment -  top

  • Archives/federal, municipal
  • Bookstores
  • Travel agencies
  • Colleges and schools
  • Industries/manufacturing
  • Learned Periodicals
  • Magazines & newspapers
  • Public relations firms
  • Libraries
  • Research Departments
  • Institutions
  • Social services agencies
  • Publishing agencies
  • Museums
  • Adult Education Programs
  • Colleges and Universities
  • Political organizations
  • Insurance companies
  • Churches & religious org.
  • Consulting services
  • Advertising agencies/departments
  • Professional/Trade associations
  • Public Interest Research Groups
  • Business corporations
  • Foundations, non-profit
  • Civil rights commission
  • Civil service commission
  • Consumer affairs office
  • Education department
  • Foreign service
  • Library of congress
  • National archives

Required Skills and Abilities  -  top

  • Collect and organize data
  • Work independently
  • Perform ambiguous tasks
  • Outstanding verbal and written skills
  • Open-mindedness
  • Close, extensive reading
  • Objectivity
  • Work Independently
  • Oratory Skills
  • Problem Solving
  • Conduct research and analysis
  • Strong communication skills
  • Ability to rationalize and resolve issues
  • Communicating in logical manner
  • Interest in pursuing, exploring and explaining intangible ideas
  • Debating Skills
  • Self-discipline
  • Theory Development
  • Curiosity
  • Deductive Reasoning

Alumni Resources  -  top

(Listed below are examples of SU Alumni and their Jobs in this major-For more alumni resources, go to Mentor Network)





Michael Hadaway, Jr   Divinity Student Virginia Theological Seminary
Hugh Bouchelle 1998 Program Specialist, Urban Search & Rescue Federal Emergency Mgt. Association
Kevin Hill 1997 Wor-Wic Career Development Instructor

Related Links: Further Explore this Career Field - top

Philosophy Associations:

SWIP: The Society for Women in Philosophy

American Philosophy Association

Wikipedia List of Organizations

Other Career-Related Links:

Note the wide range of careers of these famous people who majored in or studied Philosophy in college  (as listed in the University of the Pacific website) 

  • Phil Jackson—LA Lakers head coach (11 NBA titles)
  • Matt Groening—Creator of The Simpsons
  • Ethan Coen—Writer and director (with his brother Joel) of the films Fargo, The Big Lebowski, No Country for Old Men, Raising Arizona, and many others
  • Ricky Gervais—Actor and comedian; creator and star of The Office and Extras; also starred in The Invention of Lying and Ghost Town
  • David Souter and Stephen Breyer—U.S. Supreme Court Justices
  • Sam Harris—Well-known author of The End of Faith, Letter to a Christian Nation, and The Moral Landscape
  • Philip Glass—Influential contemporary composer known for his mesmerizing soundtracks to The Hours, The Thin Blue Line (and other Errol Morris documentaries), and Koyaanisqatsi; his music is featured in the videogame “Grand Theft Auto IV”
  • Rahm Emmanuel—Former Illinois Congressman and (former) Obama White House Chief of Staff
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