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Building Career-Ready Skills with Anthropology

Put your Anthropology degree to work pursuing a career that interests and challenges you. Anthropology majors develop higher-level empathy and communication skills to present their discipline in an accessible manner. They understand the importance of historic human behavior and its relationships to our modern everyday lives. Anthropology majors learn to analyze and apply research to interpret human cultural and biological variation in historic, prehistoric, and global contexts.   

Anthropology majors are devoted to understanding what it means to be human and demonstrate the deep cultural understanding and sensitivity that is required for thorough analyses of our past and present in order to create a better future. Additionally, Anthropology majors are educated beyond a narrow curriculum geared towards a specific job; instead, they develop critical thinking and research skills applicable to all academic and professional fields and learn to understand human behavior and how and why it changes over time. 

Explore the ways to use your Anthropology Studies education during a career conversation with the Center for Career Readiness.

Anthropology at Work

UNC Anthropology graduates pursue careers in companies and organizations around the country. Among our alumni, you will see many working in these industries:

  • K-12 Education
  • Higher Education
  • Government Administration
  • Journalism, Media and Publishing
  • Nonprofits
  • Hospital and Health Care
  • Legal
  • Museums
  • Cultural Resource Management

UNC Alumni Careers

Using their Anthropology degree, UNC alumni go on to successful careers in a variety of interesting and in-demand professions. Learn more about the popular professions these and other alumni are pursuing.

Management and Operations

UNC alumni are prepared to serve in leadership and operational management roles within non profit organizations, educational institutions and private and publicly held companies.


Chance Horiuchi, B.A. ’10, Havana Business Improvement District Executive Director  

Office and Administrative Support

Alumni working in office and administrative support professions use their transferrable skills to cross over many industries in positions that range from clerical to customer service.


Eduardo Maya, B.A. ’20, University of Denver Center for China-US Cooperation, Journal of Contemporary China Administrative Assistant and Editorial Assistant 


While many alumni working in education-related roles may be teachers, several others use their degree and training in an educational services roles like instructional design.


Denise Medina B.A. ’16, Greeley Evans School District 6 Special Education Assistant  

Explore Alumni Career Connections

On Demand Resources and Support

Access recorded alumni career panels and LinkedIn tutorials to strengthen your network and professional connections to the UNC Bear Network.

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Faculty Spotlight

Dr. Ather Zia

Research - Amplifying Voices: 
In Fall 2021, UNC Magazine featured Dr. Ather Zia's research and publications. Check out the full article here. 

Dr. Ather Zia
Associate Professor of Anthropology and Gender Studies

Believing deeply in the power of the written word, Anthropology and Gender Studies professor Ather Zia, PhD, started her professional life as a journalist. Zia, who is from Kashmir, worked for the BBC but found that what she really wanted to do was to give voice to the political dispute and the stories of her homeland. Zia earned a doctorate in anthropology at UC Irvine in 2014 and came to UNC as an assistant professor that same year. Since then, she’s found her voice — and given others opportunities to find theirs. 

Anthropology Alumni: Update your career information through the alumni association.

Careers Paths in Anthropology

General Anthropology

  • Museums
  • Education/Academia

Cultural Anthropology

  • Non-profit organizations
  • NGOs
  • International corporations


  • Park services
  • Cultural Resource Management firms
  • Geophysics consulting firms
  • State or Federal Government

Biological Anthropology

  • Public health
  • Crime labs
  • Research labs
  • Zoos