International Studies

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What can I do with this major?




International Business

  • Management
  • Human Resources
  • Labor Relations
  • Banking and Finance
  • Economics
  • International Development
  • Real Estate
  • Sales
  • Marketing
  • Product Management
  • Healthcare Administration
  • Agricultural Economics

Domestic and foreign corporations

Multinational service firms

Global small and medium enterprises

Domestic and foreign financial institutions

International marketing firms

International real estate firms

International trade firms

Contracting and consulting firms

Convention and visitors' bureaus

International airlines

Transportation, travel, and hospitality industry

Learn at least one additional language. Spend a semester studying abroad.

Seek an international internship, even if unpaid. Obtain volunteer, part-time, or summer experience at related organizations. Make personal contacts within targeted businesses. Learn about NAFTA, WTO, and GATT policies. Develop your skills domestically and begin to develop a network of contacts if you want to pursue a career abroad. Acquire supervisory skills and experience by taking leadership roles in student organizations. Learn about geography and international travel regulations. Sharpen your public speaking skills and communication skills between cultures. Make a commitment to continuous growth in understanding cultural diversity. Keep abreast of political, economic, and social changes worldwide. Increase cultural awareness and sensitivity for foreign markets and people. Develop an understanding of the international business environment. Research firms with international interests.

International Relations Government

  • International Law
  • Diplomacy
  • Foreign Affairs
  • Public Service
  • Institutional/
    Community Development

United Nations

Relief organizations

Religious organizations

Non-profit organizations/corporations

Educational institutions

Consulting firms

Research institutes


National Security Council (NSC)

Participate in an overseas mission experience. Plan to study abroad or participate in an international work experience. Learn a second or third language.

Demonstrate your depth of dedication, willingness to adapt, and coping mechanisms to combat stress and difficult situations. Develop skills in the areas of organizing groups, efficiency, and the ability to calm people.

Language Services/ Education

  • Teaching
  • Curriculum Development
  • Interpreting
  • Translating
  • Research and Writing
  • International Student Support Services
  • Study Abroad Programming

Public and private schools abroad

Community organizations

Federal government agencies

English language institutes

Overseas dependents’ schools

Religious and volunteer organizations

Colleges and universities

Gain practical domestic teaching experience and necessary training or certificate to teach abroad. Research certification options (TESOL, CELTA, CELTC, TEFL)

Obtain certificates from schools whose graduates are hired in the international marketplace. Teaching training should include supervised classroom experience.

Consider obtaining intensive TELS (Teaching English and a Second Language) training. Volunteer to tutor children and adults in English. Learn other languages to help understand how languages work. Sharpen intercultural competency, sensitivity, and tolerance. Develop superior written and oral communication skills in the English language including proper sentence structure and comprehensive vocabulary. Notify local hospitals, schools, and chambers of commerce of your availability to translate or interpret for international visitors. Minor or double major in another subject that you could also teach. Earn a master's degree in College Student Affairs to work with study abroad programs or with international student services.


  • Foreign News Correspondence
  • International Broadcasting
  • Reporting
  • Editorial/Column writing
  • Investigative Journalism
  • Research
  • Photography
  • Freelance Work

Foreign news agencies

TV networks

Large circulation newspapers

Wire services

Trade newspapers

Online publishers

Labor unions

Academic journals

International newspapers



Self employed

Obtain a summer job or internship with a newspaper. Demonstrate curiosity, high energy level, ability to produce under pressure, and withstand criticism. Develop excellent grammar and writing skills. Create a portfolio of writing samples, especially those that have been published. Join a professional journalism organization. Research international newspapers. Gain experience with campus newspaper or media. Travel or study abroad.

Strategies for placement in International Studies

  • Entry-level positions are generally in the U.S., with mid-level positions involving some international travel. Corporations hire employees with the most experience or skills set for overseas work.
  • Target larger firms that may be more likely to employ contracting services.
  • Develop linguistic skills. Learn a second and third language.
  • Demonstrate intercultural competency, sensitivity, and tolerance.
  • Gain experience in communications with people from other countries. Get to know international students on your campus.
  • Live and/or work abroad while in school.
  • Commit to a continuous study of host country’s language.
  • Develop a good understanding of etiquette and business practices in country of target.
  • Look for temporary positions abroad.
  • Obtain daily papers in target city to determine international and national news, business features, real estate markets, and community calendars.
  • Work domestically with an international firm as a contract representative.
  • Develop traits such as creativity, initiative, tenacity, a willingness to take risks and an adventurous spirit, and a sense of humor.

Prepared by the Career Planning staff of Career Services at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. (2005) UTK is an EEO/AA/Title VI/Title IX/Section
504/ADA /ADEA Employer.


One Small Planet 
Overseas Employment Information 
Overseas Jobs
Riley Guide International Resources
Monster Work Abroad 

ESL/EFL Career Guide 
Transitions Abroad  
American Institute for Foreign Study 
Fulbright Scholars Program 
The International Educator 
International School Services 
Association of International Educators 
Council on International Educational Exchange 

International News Links
International Journalists Network 
International Center for Journalists 
American Translators Association 

Public Citizen 
Cultural Survival 
Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs 
Amnesty International 
Voluntary Service Overseas 
Volunteers Abroad 
World Wide Volunteering
Save the Children 
International Committee of the Red Cross 

International Trade/Economics
Foreign Policy Association Students Corner 
United Nations
Center for International Private Enterprise 
Center for Strategic and International Studies 
Council of the Americas 
Council on Foreign Relations 
World Trade Organization 
Export-Import Bank of the United States 
World Bank 
World Economic Forum 
United States International Trade Commission 
International Chamber of Commerce 
Academy of International Business 
Euro Pages 

USA Jobs
Central Intelligence Agency 
Defense Intelligence Agency 
US Department of State 
National Security Agency 
Peace Corps