18 Degrees That Might Not Pay Off in Today’s Job Market

Choosing a college major is a pivotal decision that can shape your career and future. While passion and interest in a subject are important factors to consider, it’s also crucial to weigh the practicality of your choice in today’s rapidly evolving job landscape. Some fields of study that were once highly regarded are now facing challenges in their relevance and applicability. Whether due to technological advances, cultural shifts, or changes in demand, these majors are struggling to provide graduates with secure and lucrative career paths. In this article, we explore 18 college majors that, while intellectually enriching, may not align well with the job opportunities available in today’s market.


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Once hailed as the quintessential field for deep thinkers, a Philosophy degree doesn’t hold the job market cachet it once did. While critical thinking skills are still valued, this degree alone doesn’t necessarily open many doors in a job market increasingly focused on technical skills and specialized knowledge.  


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In a world becoming more globalized every day, a degree in a ‘dead’ language like Latin is seen as less practical. Though understanding Latin can give insights into legal, medical, and scientific terminology, job opportunities directly related to this major are sparse.  

Art History

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While enriching and interesting, an Art History degree may not lead to many job opportunities outside of academia or museums. Even within those sectors, competition is stiff and the pay is often less than stellar.  

Library Science

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The digital age has put a dent in the demand for Library Science majors. Though libraries are far from obsolete, technology has significantly altered the field, and positions in this area are more limited than they once were.  

Music Therapy

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Though a noble and important field, Music Therapy is highly specialized and doesn’t offer a wide range of job opportunities. Many in this profession have to supplement their income with other types of work, making it less financially secure.  

Religious Studies

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While this field can lead to a career in academia or ministry, the overall demand for experts in religious studies is quite limited. Career prospects outside of these narrow avenues are sparse, making it a less versatile choice for a major.  

Fashion Design

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The glamorous world of fashion design is notoriously competitive and often requires more than just a degree to succeed. A portfolio, internships, and networking are critical, and even then, stable job opportunities are limited.  

Puppet Arts

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One of the more unique majors, Puppet Arts is a field with extremely limited career prospects. While it may prepare you for a job in theater or education, the opportunities are few and highly specialized.  

Classical Studies

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While an enriching field intellectually, Classical Studies offers few job opportunities outside of academia. This major requires a deep commitment to advanced studies and research for a career, making it less practical for most students.  

Animal Behavior

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Interesting but niche, an Animal Behavior major offers limited career paths. Research and academic positions are rare, requiring additional qualifications and competition is high in this intriguing but impractical field.  


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This fascinating interdisciplinary field combines aspects of biology, astronomy, and geology but doesn’t offer a clear career path. Jobs in research and academia require advanced degrees and funding is often limited.  

Leisure Studies

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While it may sound fun, Leisure Studies lacks the job prospects to make it a secure choice. Often it serves as a stepping stone to careers in hospitality or management, but these jobs rarely require such a specialized degree.  

Ancient Languages

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Similar to Latin, majors in Ancient Languages like Sanskrit or Ancient Greek are not in high demand in the modern job market. While they might enrich a student’s personal knowledge, they provide limited opportunities for employment.  

Print Journalism

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In the era of digital media, print journalism is increasingly losing its footing as newspapers and magazines face declining readership and revenue. Newsrooms around the country have downsized dramatically, and the fierce competition for remaining roles makes job opportunities in this field harder to come by than ever. Aspiring journalists often need to be skilled in digital formats to stand out.  


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This social science degree is fascinating and enriches our understanding of human cultures, but it often fails to provide a clear career path. Jobs in academia or research are few and far between and typically require additional qualifications like a master’s or a Ph.D., as well as extensive field experience. This makes the major less practical for those who do not plan to continue their education.  

Medieval Studies

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As captivating as it is to study the art, culture, and history of the Middle Ages, job prospects related to Medieval Studies are confined mostly to academia. Even there, positions are limited and highly competitive. Outside of teaching or academic writing, career options in museums or historic sites are quite limited, often requiring additional expertise.  

Folklore and Mythology

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Studying the myths, legends, and stories that have shaped cultures across the world is incredibly intriguing but offers little in terms of long-term job security. Career paths in this field are most often academic in nature, demanding a commitment to extended study and research, and offer limited earning potential compared to other professions.  

Home Economics

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While it teaches valuable life skills like cooking, budgeting, and household management, a degree in Home Economics isn’t the most lucrative or job-friendly option for college students today. Job opportunities tend to be confined to education, and these roles often require additional certification or educational qualifications, limiting the degree’s versatility.

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