Career Paths

Classics is a demanding and distinctive course of study that stresses the development of some exceedingly important intellectual sensibilities—close reading, analytical clarity, thorough research, evaluation of evidence, logical analysis, effective writing, appreciation of nuance and subtleties, historical variability, cultural differences. Our students are well prepared to succeed after college. Recent majors have gone on to graduate school and employment in fields as varied as medicine, law, art history, business, secondary education and, sometimes, even Classics.

An article in The Princeton Review states:

“We can't overestimate the value of a Classics major. Check this out: according to Association of American Medical Colleges, students who major or double-major in Classics have a better success rate getting into medical school than do students who concentrate solely in biology, microbiology, and other branches of science. Crazy, huh? Furthermore, according to Harvard Magazine, Classics majors (and math majors) have the highest success rates of any majors in law school. Believe it or not: political science, economics, and pre-law majors lag fairly far behind. Even furthermore, Classics majors consistently have some of the highest scores on GREs of all undergraduates.

“Shocked? Don't be. One reason Classics majors are so successful is that they completely master grammar. Medical terminology, legal terminology, and all those ridiculously worthless vocabulary words on the GRE (and the SAT) have their roots in Greek and Latin. Ultimately, though, Classics majors get on well in life because they develop intellectual rigor, communications skills, analytical skills, the ability to handle complex information, and, above all, a breadth of view which few other disciplines can provide.”

And according to the American Philological Association:

“Future employers view Classics majors as students who have been trained to read original and difficult texts as well as to think about them critically, and who are able to communicate these thoughts persuasively in speech and on paper.  These skills are as rare as they are sought after by employers in many fields.”

If you’re interested in Classics as a major or minor, please drop by to learn more about the different undergraduate opportunities at Northwestern University’s Department of Classics.