Undergraduate Advising Office
Philosophy Undergraduate Advising is:
- the place to go to explore Philosophy as a new major
- for degree-planning for existing majors
- to discuss post-graduation plans
- as well as to find out about Philosophy courses and faculty.
The Academic Advisor is usually available on a walk-in basis, so feel free to come by any time during office hours: 9 AM to noon, 1 to 4 PM.
Academic advising addresses a variety of student concerns, such as course schedules, degree and departmental requirements, selecting courses, problems with a class or professor, and referral to other UT services and resources.
Students may also review their own Interactive Degree Audit online to stay apprised of their academic progress.
The Bouwsma Undergraduate Advising Center
The Bouwsma Advising Center is in WAG 313. Students can go there for advising, to meet and study with friends, or to find information about UT resources and review examples of senior honors theses.
What do you do with a philosophy degree?
Students interested in becoming philosophy majors often ask, “What kind of jobs can you get with a philosophy degree?” A Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy by itself does not lead to any particular job path, but students who plan their undergraduate career carefully can get almost any job they want with a degree in philosophy. Below are listed some strategies for getting the job you want.
Graduate, Law and Medical School
(a) Graduate school in Philosophy is the most obvious direction to take with a philosophy degree. If you’re interested in philosophy graduate school, you should talk to the philosophy academic advisor.
(b) Philosophy is one of the best majors to prepare a student for Law Schools. Law Schools don’t place a great deal of importance on applicant’s majors, but philosophy student perform better on the LSAT than any other liberal arts major and philosophy inculcates students with skills that are essential for law school, especially dexterity with arguments in written and oral communication. If you're interested in law school you should talk to the College of Liberal Arts Pre-Law Advisor..
(c) There are plenty of students who complete pre-medical, pre-dental and pre-veterinary requirements while pursuing a liberal arts degree. See the Health Professions Office website.
Building a Strong Resume
Most employers are not particularly interested in what your diploma says. It’s important that you have a college degree, but that degree may have nothing to do with your job after graduation. More important than your major will be your resume, including your work/volunteer experience and any other extra-curricular experience that demonstrates your professional aptitude. In other words, it’s a good idea to spend at least some of you undergraduate years working, volunteering or interning. If you’re interested in working in journalism, for example, get a job at the Daily Texan or an internship at the Austin-American Statesman; if you’re interested in politics, volunteer to work on a political campaign; if you’re interested in becoming an editor, intern with a publisher or join a student organization that published a journal; if you want to work in the visual arts, volunteer at the Austin Museum of Art or the Blanton.
Even if you aren’t sure what career you want to pursue, you can still strategically build your resume by working at jobs that will open doors after graduation. For example, working part-time at a law firm, doing even the most menial tasks, will generally make you a more attractive applicant for professional jobs than will waiting tables, even though the latter may pay more than the former.
A word of caution: Don’t work or volunteer so much that it takes a toll on your grades or your health.
The College of Liberal Arts Career Services has information on internships and employment opportunities.
Getting a philosophy degree in no way precludes you from getting another degree that does lead to a job after graduation. It is fairly easy to earn a double major in two Liberal Arts degree programs. It is harder, but not very difficult if you plan carefully, to complete a philosophy degree and a degree from another college, such as Business or Engineering.
You can also supplement your philosophy degree with certification programs in various fields. Certifications can typically be used as minors and require much less coursework than a double major.
(a) The Elements of Computing program offers training, with a certificate, that provides “students with knowledge of computer science that employers find valuable.”
(b) Business Foundations offers training, with a certificate, in the fundamentals of business.
(c) The Bridging Disciplines program offers certification in the following areas of study, which may help you achieve your career goals:
Digital Arts and Media
Social Inequality, Health and Policy
Liberal Arts Career Services also provides online major-specific resources.