Degree Programs That Can Spur Social Change

Want to change the world? The desire to create social change is often a driving factor for the career choices of college students and working adults who are considering changing their vocations. If you want to do more than simply work, you’re not alone — one study found that 90% of people are willing to make less income in exchange for the opportunity to pursue work that is more meaningful. Fortunately, there are more careers now that offer the opportunity to pursue social justice in a variety of ways.

 Here are Degree Programs that can Spur Social Change

A degree in political science could help set the stage for a career in politics, lobbying, or public administration. Studying political science can help you learn how to help shape public policy; how to work within a government entity; how to work with the legal system to help people; and how political systems influence social justice.

Majoring in psychology could help you prepare for a career that could create social change. For example, you may learn how to work as a counselor for individuals, couples, or families; work with children, including at-risk youth; work as a drug or substance abuse counselor, and help people who are facing homelessness or other challenges.

A degree in sociology lets you explore how society affects people. It can help prepare you for jobs in nonprofit work and government entities. With this degree, you could learn how to help people who may face more disadvantages than others.

A degree in education can help you understand how people — especially young people — learn. It could prepare you to help impact society through work as a teacher, administrator, or other educational professionals. You can help make social change by working closely with young people.

With a degree in law or criminal justice, you can learn how laws are enacted and interpreted, and how laws can affect people in different ways. You can use your degree to work as a public defender to represent disadvantaged clients or work for a nonprofit organization to help ensure that people have legal representation for civil matters. You have numerous options with a law degree, depending on how you specialize.

Whether you are considering an undergraduate degree or a graduate degree, you may be surprised to see just how many programs colleges and universities offer that focus on social change. For more programs that can help influence and drive social change, check out the accompanying resource by the Do Good Institute at the University of Maryland.