Prospects for Employment and Further Study
The best of both worlds
Employers like the Combined degree - for the obvious reason that graduates come out with a range of skills from the different subjects they have studied. Unusually, Combined allows you to study a subject with vocational relevance, such as Management, Psychology or Economics, alongside such elements of a traditional, liberal degree such as Politics, Philosophy or Sociology. In this way Combined can give you a degree relevant to the world of employment and a traditional academic degree.
But remember that most graduates go into employment that is not directly related to their degree. The important thing is the breadth of mind, forms of understanding and various skills that university helps you develop.
Where do our graduates go?
Recent graduates have gone into a diverse range of employment, including merchant and investment banking, management consultancy, local government, marketing and advertising, the Civil Service, the media, public relations and international charities, teaching English abroad. Top earners have started as high as 'just below £40k' (merchant banking) and £34k + car (regional retail management). They can be found in (a selection) Marks and Spencer, the Home Office, Proctor & Gamble, Northern Rock, Royal Bank of Scotland.
Recent graduates have gone on to: City Group, Technology Infrastructure; Qualitative Research Executive, Dipsticks Research; Editorial Assistant, Penguin Books; Project Manager, Easington and Sedgefield NHS Primary Care Trust; Manager, Aldi supermarkets; Fast Track Civil Service; Department Manager, Fenwick’s; Community Support Worker, Lancs CC; Church Youth Worker; Graduate Transport Planner, Essex CC; Financial Analyst, KPMG; Student Adviser, Derby University; Graduate Management (Human Resources) trainee, international firm, based Amsterdam...
Some undertake further training, to qualify themselves as teachers, solicitors and barristers, accountants and specialists in Human Resource Management, marketing, advertising...
Some continue in academia, pursuing Higher Degrees in their chosen subjects or in interdisciplinary fields. Recent graduates have taken or are currently taking MA or MSc degrees in a wide variety of fields, including:
- International Relations
- Development Studies
- Creative Writing
- Forensic and Biological Anthropology
- Conflict and Security
- Gender Studies
- Real Estate Management
Some go off to less conventional destinations: to work with refugees, play professional sport, design wedding dresses, or even to train as a midwife.
Why do combined social sciences at Durham? Here's my story:
My name is Andrew Wilkinson and in 2002 I graduated with a 2:1 in combined social sciences from Durham (Economics, Politics and Management). 6 weeks after graduating I began working for Aldi supermarkets as an area manager. I ran 6 supermarkets and started on a £36,000+car whilst living with my folks in Manchester!
This position was ranked in the Times top 20 graduate positions- and offers one of the best salary packages around- much to the envy of my flat mates at the time! I recently left Aldi (and 53K) and gained entry onto the Manchester MBA programme- ranked 22nd in the world and because of my background, I was also awarded the maximum scholarship, despite being one of the youngest students.
All of this has been possible because of my degree choice. Having core skills in 3 subjects from such a university is absolutely PRICELESS in the fierce job market. There were 970 applicants per place onto the Aldi scheme and you have to have an edge over the competition. A 2:1 in CSS with some good extra curricular skills puts any student at the top of the list. Many of my peers at Durham struggled to gain positions because their courses were so narrow. Once you start work there are many different challenges to tackle at once and again, the combined experience prepares you well for this. Getting a great job is one thing- but without the development that this course offers, you aren't going to stay employed for long.
Industry leaders, MBA deans and my previous peers at University have all commented on the benefits of the combined course- so to all prospective students, I urge you to apply- to all current students- congratulations- I look forward to meeting you in a board room soon.Andrew
Where will you go?
are constantly being told that the world of employment in the future
will not be like the past: that it will become more common for people
to change their careers several times during their lives, for instance,
or that 'portfolio careers' which combine a range of different
part-time enterprises will be the norm and not the exception. The
Combined degree gives you great flexibility and keeps your options
open; it shows you are versatile.