Why study history?
Because every succeeding generation has new questions to ask of the past, history is constantly being rewritten, which makes it an exciting, sometimes dramatic discipline. Perhaps of equal importance, studying history allows students to develop skills constantly in demand in the workplace. In fact, a recent survey
found that employers rank writing, research, critical-thinking, and perspective-taking as the most vital skills they hope to see in new hires. These are precisely the skills one develops in the sustained study of history. History majors not only take numerous courses requiring them to develop as writers, they also produce a capstone paper inviting them to locate, evaluate, and make sense of evidence. Learning history is thus not only vital to understanding the past and the present, but it also invites students to develop valuable workplace skills.
You may want to take a look at a recent study of "How Liberal-Arts Majors Fare over the Long Haul"
in the January 22, 2014 issue of the Chronicle of Higher Education
. This study reports that liberal-arts majors have around the same earning potential over the course of their careers as those who choose professional and pre-professional degrees.