According to one recent survey, 14% of philosophy PhDs end up in non-academic employment. On top of that, there are some graduate students who leave their programs prior to obtaining their degree to pursue non-academic jobs.While the academic job market for philosophy PhDs is hard to predict, I don’t know of anyone arguing that we’re on the precipice of a significant hiring boom. Some people expect that the percentage of philosophy PhD students ending up in non-academic work will increase.
While there has been discussion of philosophy programs being supportive of students aiming for non-academic careers, information provided about people with philosophical training with such careers (see here, here, and here, for example), and guidance from the American Philosophical Association (APA), it would be useful to know what practical steps philosophy departments have actually taken to better prepare their graduate students for successfully pursuing work outside of academia.
I’m aware of a couple of such measures:
- Non-philosophy curricular requirements
- Texas A&M requires philosophy PhD students to also earn an MA (or higher degree) in a non-philosophy field (or in an interdisciplinary Early Modern Studies program).
- Carnegie Mellon requires PhD students to take two interdisciplinary courses
- Michigan State’s Engaged Philosophy Internship Program (details here) provides funding for PhD students to support their work with non-academic organizations.
If your department has implemented any practices, policies, or programs to assist students with preparing for or finding non-academic employment, it would be useful to hear about it. Thanks.