What jobs can I get with a Psychology degree with a Business minor?

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6961733054_8768a337f8_zDanielle from Penn State University asked:

What jobs can I get with a Psychology degree with a Business minor?

Hi Danielle –

Your Psych degree give you a lot of options. Combine that with your Business minor and your options can become a lot more focused.  To identify your best options,  you have to ask yourself a few questions:

Do you want to work in a psychology-related field?

I don’t want to assume that just because you studied Psychology you also want to work in the field.  Unlike accounting majrors, engineering majors and nursing majors, many people who pursue degrees in the liberal arts and social sciences have no intention of working directly in their field of study.

If you do want to work as a psychologist, you will need to get an advanced degree.  If you get that advanced degree and go into private practice, your Business minor will come in very handy.  Why? Because private practitioners are in business for themselves, and to stay in business, you need to manage your business; even if your business is being a psychologist.

To learn more about careers in Psychology, I recommend visiting the careers page of the American Psychology Association – PsychCareers.

If you don’t want to be a psychologist, but want to work in or around the field, start paying attention to the resources and tools psychologists use:  cognitive and behavioral testing resources, therapy resources, research resources … companies provide these services to psychologists.  Perhaps you could work for one of these companies.

How do you find them? Start by looking at the list of exhibitors at APA Annual Conferences.  Companies exhibit at professional association conferences to generate business from conference attendees. If you want to know who is selling to psychologists, start by looking at who is exhibiting at their conferences.  This kind of information is really easy to find online.

How do you want to use your business minor in your career?

Your Business minor could be a real difference maker for you, depending upon how you wish to use it. Everyone with a fundamental understanding of business has an advantage over others who do not.

If you understand how to build and manage an income vs. expense budget, write a business plan, read and understand financial statements, assess market potential, conduct a marketing campaign, review a business contract or sell a product or service, you are valuable to virtually any organization (for-profit or non-profit) that has to conduct business, connect with customers and prospective customers, work with business partners and vendors and operate on a budget.

Don’t underestimate the value of your Business minor, and don’t let Business majors tell you there is no value in your Psychology major.  There is a catch, however!  You have to be able to communicate the value of your degrees, majors and minors.  Employers will only understand the value of what you offer if you make yourself understandable.

What priorities are guiding your job search?

Easy question, hard answers!  What is most important to you?

Money? Work environment? Schedule flexibility? Meaningfulness of work you do? Making a difference? Benefits? The type of work itself?

There are no right or wrong answers here. You just need to be aware that every decision and every priority involves some kind of trade-off.  Most people are not going to make a lot of money by working short hours and putting leisure ahead of work. Social workers and school teachers do not become millionaires on their salaries.  If you have visible tattoos, purple  hair and a lot of piercings, understand that some employers will not want to hire you because of your appearance.

Yes, this is a free country.  Yes, you can make whatever decisions you want.  Yes, you will generally benefit or suffer consequences based upon the decisions you make.

So set your priorities wisely.

Getting Started

First, connect with your college career center.  Helping students navigate the journey from campus to career is what they do.  They can help.

Next, articulate your priorities, your qualifications and your interests.  Make sure they are reflected in your resume and job search correspondence.  Use them to guide your career exploration and job search activities.

Then, start exploring and applying.

Danielle, there is not a simple direct answer to your question, so please don’t allow yourself to get frustrated looking for it.  Rather, be curious to explore your options and discover what you might become.

Happy Hunting!



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One response to “What jobs can I get with a Psychology degree with a Business minor?”

  1. Kevin Fallon says:

    The field of Human Resources is a great field for a Psychology major to explore. Large organizations employ Psychology majors in Recruiting and Talent Selection as well as Leadership Development / Talent Management / Corporate Succession planning. Check out SHRM.org – they offer student memberships.

    Some of the best recruiters (Search Firm recruiters) have undergraduate majors in Psychology so your Business degree is an “added bonus”