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Arts jobs in the business and finance industry

Check out these options for Arts degree holders

November 5, 2020 — 

When you think about jobs in the business and finance industry, what type of education do you think those graduates have?

It could be a Bachelor of Commerce with majors in Finance, Marketing or International Business. Maybe it’s a Bachelor of Science in Agribusiness; or a Bachelor of Arts.

As a student in the Faculty of Arts, you are gaining many marketable skills from your degree. If you are pursuing a liberal arts education and have a passion for business, here are a sample of some really cool business occupations commonly performed by Arts graduates.

Business Analyst – Utilizing Linkedin’s company search feature and searching for “Bachelor of Arts” we went on McKinsey & Company’s page. It shows many different employees who hold a Bachelor of Arts degree, including a B.A. grad who works as a Business Analyst.

People in these positions formulate policies and manage programs to stimulate industrial and commercial business investment, or tourism in urban and rural areas, or to promote commercial or industrial products and services (NOC, 2016).

Accountant – A quick look at the National Occupational Classification system (NOC) shows that Chartered Accountants require a university degree and completion of a professional program approved by the provincial institute of chartered accountants.

Cross referencing this information with the Chartered Professional Accountants (CPA) in Manitoba shows that to enter into the CPA Preparation Education Program (PEP), students need to have obtained an undergraduate degree. Common majors for Bachelor of Arts students looking at becoming a CPA are economics and mathematics. Note: there are specific required courses for entry into the CPA PEP.

Human Resource Professional – Exploring a professional association’s webpages, you will see the education requirements required to join that specific association. In the case of the Chartered Professionals in Human Resources (CPHR) – Manitoba branch, a degree with any major is one way to start the process for gaining a CPHR designation.

However, completing a Bachelor of Arts (Advanced major or General Major in Labour Studies), with required courses, gives you the ability to apply for a waiver for the National Knowledge Exam (NKE). Completing the NKE is the next step to many of the paths in completing the requirements for the CPHR.

Corporate Sales Manager – Browsing on University of Manitoba’s Alumni page on Linkedin, you will see all sorts of B.A. graduates who are working in business and finance, including a Corporate Sales manager at Holiday Inn. In general, sales and marketing managers may be responsible for the profitability of products or services, customer retention, sales, sales forecasting, strategic planning, advertising and promotion, market research and customer needs assessment, media relations, event management, customer service, and more. (alis, 2020).

Hopefully these occupations caught your attention because these jobs are just a sliver of what is out there. Here are three easy ways to learn more about jobs in the business and finance industry for B.A. graduates:

  1. Use LinkedIn to find employees who are employed in the business and finance industry. Take note of their education and experiences to get insight into how they developed the necessary competencies to secure that job.
  2. Look at job postings for business and finance companies and scan the knowledge, skills and attributes the organizations are looking for.
  3. Check out Career Services’ online job search resources – or attend a Job Search or Linkedin workshop. Register on careerCONNECT to attend workshops.

Think critically about your coursework and the skills you are developing during your degree, and how that can apply to business and finance jobs. Arts students can also choose a management minor or leadership for business and organizations minor if thinking of pursuing a job in business.

Enhance your classroom learning by getting relevant part-time or summer work, and if available in your area of study, apply to the Faculty of Arts co-op education program. Joining a student club on campus is another great way to gain experience. Volunteering at university or in the community can also help you create professional connections and give you a low-risk taste of an occupation you are considering.

Take time to reflect on your experiences both inside and outside the classroom. Participating in experiential opportunities will not only help you make informed decisions, you will also develop the skills employers are looking for.

If you need help with career planning, exploring your career options or developing a plan to reach your goals, email Career Services at cs [dot] receptionist [at] umanitoba [dot] ca or call (204) 474-9456 and speak with a Career Consultant. For help planning a course of study congruent with your goals, connect with the Arts Academic Advisors at arts_inquiry [at] umanitoba [dot] ca.

This article is a part of the November 2020 Career Month series. To view all of the Career Month initiatives including events, articles, and tips click here.

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