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2022 In-Demand Careers

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UC San Diego, School of Global Policy and Strategy

Grads Look for Remote Work and Socially Responsible Employers

As graduates of the School of Global Policy and Strategy (GPS) at the University of California San Diego head into the work world, they bear the imprint of recent global changes.

Stephanie Boomhower, director of career services, says students are itching to use the passport they tucked away during the pandemic. They are looking for jobs that will allow them to be remote so they can travel and spend time working near family. “That’s the biggest trend: graduates wanting the flexibility in their work,” she says. “Especially for a global policy school, our students like to travel.”

Companies are actively working to develop policies that make sense for clients, the business, and their employees, Boomhower says.

Interest in climate change and social justice is also driving post-graduation decisions.

“It’s a mindset,” Boomhower says. “It’s really looking at employers through a different lens: Are employers socially responsible, are they paying a fair wage, is there equity in the workplace?”

GPS offers courses that cover subject areas such as racial equity and social policy, which in addition to being hot topics politically, are now more often the focus of job opportunities in both government and the private sector, Boomhower observes.

During their first year at GPS, students choose a career track to develop professional expertise. This provides an opportunity to work closely with peers and faculty who share their specialized interest. Options range from international environmental governance to international development and nonprofit management.

Students also learn beyond the classroom. An internship between the two academic years gives them a chance to apply their skills. Some second-year capstone classes provide the opportunity to consult on a project with a real-world employer. Students also participate in trips to major employment centers, which were virtual during the pandemic, and mock interviews with alumni.

“It’s a mindset. It’s really looking at employers through a different lens: Are employers socially responsible, are they paying a fair wage, is there equity in the workplace?” –Stephanie Boomhower, Director of Career Services, School of Global Policy and Strategy, University of California San Diego

“There isn’t one way to solve a problem or approach an idea,” Boomhower says. “By offering students opportunities to gain certificates, double track, take classes outside of GPS, they are learning a wide variety of skills and knowledge so they can think outside of the box to tackle problems and ideas in the workforce.”

Half of graduates go into the private sector, while the remainder are evenly divided between nonprofits/multilateral organizations and the public sector/academia. Boomhower says the top five industries for graduates are, in order: technology, research, consulting, environment, and economics.

GPS graduates have access to career services for life. “We see it as our way of giving back to alumni,” Boomhower says.