Classics graduates have skills in analysing and interpreting ancient culture, languages and events that laid the foundation for aspects of our lives today.

Classics students use their skills in abstract and strategic thinking to analyse and interpret classical history, including culture, society, language and artifacts.Students examine areas such as language, theatre, art, politics, religion or trade and compare these to popular culture and contemporary issues such as globalisation, law, justice, policy or trade.

Roles and career pathways

Classics graduates work in a wide range of roles that often involve critical analysis, thinking about the relationships of things through time (systematical thinking), and abstract reasoning. To share complex information with non-technical audiences, a good grasp of language and writing ability is required. Government ministries employ graduates in policy, stakeholder relations, communications and in research analyst or advisory roles. First roles for graduates with undergraduate degrees may be in an administration or coordination role before progressing to an adviser position. Classics graduates may also work as business coordinators, logistics coordinators, web content writers, journalists, marketing assistants, programme coordinators, customer service managers, parliamentary researchers or education faculty administrators.

Postgraduate study in Classics such as an Honours or Master’s degree is helpful for a number of intermediate to senior policy and research roles or for positions as archivists and librarians where specialised, in-depth analysis is important. For students looking to work in the museum sector, a Master of Museum and Heritage Practice is a popular choice as it includes an internship as a component of the course.

Adding another subject such as History, Cultural Anthropology, Political Science, Public Policy, Social Policy, Marketing or Law can help broaden your employment options. Computer Science, Mathematics or Philosophy combined with Latin could provide graduates with the mindset of a creative developer or test analyst.

Completing a postgraduate diploma in secondary teaching (limited entry) may lead to roles teaching Classics. Latin is taught in a small number of New Zealand secondary schools. At least one other approved teaching subject at secondary level is also required.

Where Classics graduates work

Classics graduates work across the private and public sectors in a variety of organisations such as libraries, government departments, professional services firms, universities or schools.

Classics graduates have worked in organisations, including:

Build relevant skills and experience

Part-time work and volunteering during study all help to increase your job prospects when you graduate. The WFHSS Internship course run by the Wellington Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences helps develop practical work place experience. Programmes such as Wellington Plus and Wellington International Leadership Programme (WILP) offer opportunities to gain diverse volunteer and leadership experience.

Make career connections

Making connections with individuals and groups during your degree can help you learn more about career and networking opportunities.

The Wellington Classical Association offers a range of social events and informative talks throughout the year mainly at Victoria University of Wellington’s Kelburn campus.The Wellington Chamber of Commerce and Wellington Young Professionals offer various events and opportunities for networking.The Alumni as Mentors programme for final-year students also helps enhance your connections and employability while studying.