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Career Relevance: Students' Thoughts

Department of Religious Studies



If you are considering becoming a Religious Studies major, this is definitely an appropriate question to ask. The following resources offer some advice on why you should become a Religious Studies major!


5. You have endless opportunities to be exposed to ideas and practices that will challenge you academically and enrich your personal and spiritual development.

4. Religious Studies majors get the best of the humanities: literature, history, art, and anthropology, all in one major.

3. Knowledge of world religions will help you interact with different people throughout your life, no matter where your chosen career takes you. With the strong emphasis on writing and the breadth of a liberal arts education, graduates can get jobs doing just about anything, from teaching or preaching to becoming doctors, lawyers, publishers, FBI agents ... the sky is the limit!

2. You get to have classes with the most awesome students on campus!

1. The Religious Studies department at Millsaps College is amazing! Click here for information about the faculty!

"Studying religion is a great way to learn how to think."

- Lottie Bash, 1996



Here are some areas in which people with religious studies majors are qualified to work.

  • Publications/Communications
  • Education and Research
  • Government and Non-Profit
  • Sample job ideas here in Jackson

"A religious studies degree from Millsaps puts a student in a place to pursue almost any avenue of interest. The analytical, research, and writing skills qualifies one to do almost any work from teaching to consulting to professional school to further academic study."

- Drew Walker, 2001



Graduates of Millsaps' Religious Studies department have pursued careers in a variety of areas. Listed below are just a few examples of what others have done with their degrees (or see our Alumni entries):

  • Attorney (Lottie Bash, 1996)
  • Resident in the department of Neurology at UAB (Gill Diethelm, 1994)
  • Student Marriage and Family Therapist at Reformed Theological Seminary (Elise Ingels Terrell, 2002)
  • Logistics analyst and Procurement manager (Halley Austin, 1997)
  • Associate Pastor, Christ United Methodist Church (Ricky James, 2004)
  • Professor and Chair, Dept of Sociology Morehouse College (Obie Clayton, 1976)
  • High School Religion Teacher (Howard Pickett, 1996; Drew Walker, 2001)
  • Publishing and Education (Elizabeth Young, 1997)
  • Congregational Liaison and Director of Special Projects at PATH People Attempting to Help, a non-profit organization in Tyler, Texas (Martha Ostenrude Kerns, 2000)
  • Executive Director of The Mississippi United Methodist Foundation (T. Jerry Mitchell, 1965)

"I will always have fond memories of exciting days of learning new things and thinking in new ways at Millsaps."

- Andrea Kersh Johnson, 1999



Find out more about possible career paths for Religious Studies majors through the Millsaps Career Center. In addition to the resources on the website, the Career Center also has some helpful books. Additionally, they can help you log on to FOCUS to get specifics about skills, qualifications, salaries, and responsibilities for various jobs.

Interested in reading more about religious studies career options? Try one of these:

  • Opportunities in Religious Service Careers by John Oliver Nelson
  • 100 Jobs in Social Change by Harley Jebens
  • Great Jobs for Liberal Arts Majors by Blythe Camenson
  • 100 Best Companies for Liberal Arts Graduates by Cheryl Woodruff

Also, the Millsaps Faith and Work Initiative has a great library of books on a variety of subjects that could be of interest.

Still need more information? Check out these useful sites:



Millsaps graduates have pursued further education at various law schools and medical schools around the country in addition to attending schools like Harvard Divinity School, Emory University, Duke University, and Vanderbilt Divinity School for masters degrees in Religion. To find out more about attending graduate school in Religion and Theology, read Micki Lennon's useful discussion.

"Along with the liberal arts education at Millsaps, the Religious studies major prepared me to appreciate a divergence of opinion, theory, and ideology while equipping me to handle the reading and work load of graduate studies."

- Ricky James, 2004