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Career Opportunities

The economics program prepares students for careers in both the public (government or education) and private (Goodyear or IBM, for example) sectors.  Economics is also the most likely major to produce a CEO of a Fortune 500 company (Flynn, P. and M. Quinn, 2010. " Economics: Good Choice of Major for Future CEOs." The American Economist, 55(1).).

Kent graduates have taken positions in banking and insurance as managers, analysts, and sales associates. In addition, economics graduates find positions in industrial sales and management, as analysts for government agencies, and as managers and sales representatives in retail trade establishments. Undergraduate economics majors are also well prepared to pursue graduate work in economics -- they may want to pursue a Master of Arts (MA) in Economics or an MBA. Furthermore, a major in economics is excellent preparation for law school. For students with an interest in international opportunities, the Economics major is a good program to consider.

Specific information on career opportunities are presented below.  Additionally, the American Economic Association has detailed information about career opportunities and options for graduate school for economics majors.

Salaries by Undergraduate Major

Economics consistently ranks as one of the highest starting salaries for majors, typically only behind engineering majors, and one of the highest mid-career earnings.

Undergraduate major    Mid-career earnings
of BA/BS holders
% who earn a
graduate degree

Mid-career earnings
with a graduate degree


Engineering    $75,000    37%    $99,000   
Computer science
$75,000    28%    $93,750   

Economics

$70,400

39%

$103,488

Mathematics    $67,000    47%    $89,110   
Finance    $65,000    26%    $92,950   
Accounting    $63,000    21%    $86,310   
Political science    $59,000    47%    $95,580   
Business administration/management
$58,000    20%    $78,300   
Chemistry    $58,000    60%    $111,940   
Marketing    $58,000    14%    $76,560   
Biology/life sciences
$50,000    54%    $100,500   
History    $50,000    46%    $80,000   
Hospitality management    $50,000    12%    $72,500   
Communications/Journalism    $50,000    20%    $62,500   
Sociology    $45,000    34%    $60,300   
Psychology    $45,000    43%    $65,250   

* Carneval, Anthony P., Jeff Strohl, and Michelle Melton, 2011.  " What It's Worth: The Economic Value of College Majors." Center on Education and the Workforce, Georgetown University.

Jobs Accepted By Recent Economics Department Graduates

Unlike many majors, economics majors have an extremely wide range of possible jobs available.  Recent jobs accepted by graduates include:

Accountant    Commercial Credit Analyst
Purchasing Manager

Accountant    Consumer Lending Officer
Small Business Consultant

Assistant Bank Examiner    Financial Analyst
Systems Analyst

Assistant Manager (retail)    Insurance Investigator
Trust Analyst   
Bank Manager    Loan Officer Trainee     
Branch Manager Trainee    Manufacturing Sales Representative     

Graduate School Opportunities

Wages and earnings increase substantially with the amount of education a worker has.  Economics majors do very well when applying to a variety of graduate programs including law schools, MBA programs, public policy programs and MA and PhD programs in economics.  Recent undergraduates have gone on to graduate programs at Cambridge University, University of Leuven (Belgium), University of Florida, or have continued to complete the MA in Economics here at Kent State University.  Students have also attended law school at Georgetown University and the University of Chicago.

Questions?

If you have any questions about career opportunities in economics, please contact us or talk to any members of the economics faculty.  You may also find useful information at the American Economic Association website.

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