University of California, RiversideUCR


Ethnic Studies

Ethnic Studies is an interdisciplinary approach to the study of ethnic groups in society. As an Ethnic Studies major, you gain knowledge of a broad range of ethnic groups and develop important skills in research, writing, analysis, critical thinking and cultural awareness.

Representative Job Titles and Areas of Specialization

Administrative Analysts Museum Curator *
Advertising Agent Personnel Analyst
Bank Officer Probation Officer
Bilingual Education Consultant Professor/Instructor/Teacher *
City Planner * Psychologist *
Claims Adjuster Public Administrator
Community Organization Worker Public Relations
Customs/Immigration Inspector Rehabilitation Counselor *
Foreign Service Officer Researcher
Grant/Proposal Writer Revenue Agent
Group Counselor Social Worker *
Industrial Relations Specialist Staff Analyst
Intelligence Analyst Substance Abuse Counselor
Lawyer * Writer/Editor
Management Trainee  
*See Training section

Nature of the Work


Many career opportunities with government agencies and non-profit organizations are available to Ethnic Studies majors. Here is a brief summary of the type of work you might perform:
  • Administrative assistants collect, compile and analyze information, review policies and procedures and prepare written reports, grant applications, correspondence, resolutions, and proclamations.
  • Human services workers are employed in group homes and halfway houses; correctional and community mental health centers; family, child, and youth service agencies; and programs concerned with alcoholism, drug abuse, family violence, and aging.
  • Human service workers in social service agencies interview clients, assess their needs, and establish their eligibility for services.
  • Social workers assist individuals and families with management of health, social, emotional and economic problems.
  • Group counselors are responsible for supervising the activities, safety and care of juveniles in county detention or correctional facilities.
  • Probation officers helps individuals abide by the terms and conditions of probation.

Places of Employment

Advertising agencies Hospitals
Banks Insurance companies
City, county, state government Museums
Federal government Publishing companies
Department of Health and Human Services Research and educational institutes
Department of State Retailers
Immigration and Naturalization Services School districts
Internal Revenue Service Social service agencies
Office of Personnel Management Universities and colleges
Social Security Administration  


Many of the jobs listed above may be obtained with a bachelor's degree depending on the type of coursework you completed and experience you gained as an undergrad.

Those job titles designated by an asterisk generally require specific education and/or experience beyond the bachelor's degree.

A master's degree in social work is required for many positions in the mental health field and is almost always necessary for supervisory, administrative or research positions.

If you are considering a career in teaching and research at a university, you will need to pursue a Ph.D.

For further information and/or career counseling contact the UCR Career Center, (951) 827-3631.

Supplemental Material

The following documents may provide further ideas for exploration.

More Information

General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

Department Information

Career Center
Career Center Plaza

Tel: (951) 827-3631
Fax: (951) 827-2447
Student Questions: careercounseling@ucr.edu
Employer Questions: careerrecruiting@ucr.edu