"So Why Do You Study Politics?"

Currently I am a full-time university student - I study a joint honours degree Politics and Sociology at the University of Leeds and I am in my final year.

However once I graduate I don't plan on going into politics or sociology.  If I go onto further study then I will not study a Masters within those subjects.  After I graduate my plan is to go onto pursue a successful, progressive and fulfilling career in something relating to new media or magazine journalism.

In addition to this, I tend to write about fashion and lifestyle posts and articles for other magazines as well as my own blog - though I write about other topics too, such as life, politics, society, comment, opinion, arts and culture.

As a result of my choice of degree subjects and my future career plans, I am always asked the following questions:

"Why do you study politics?"

"Why did you chose to study politics when you want to work in the media?"

"If your so interested in fashion why didn't you study a fashion degree?"

"Why didn't you study journalism/fashion/media/marketing/PR/communications?"

"Do you want to be the next Prime Minister? No? Why not?"

"Why would anyone bother to study a politics degree?  It's a waste of a subject and a waste of time."

"What's the point of studying politics if you are not going to pursue a carrer in it?"

And so on...

After a while they questions start to annoy me.

First of all, you don't need a media degree to get into the media, and you don't need a fashion degree to get into fashion.  I want to have a successful career in writing/journalism/PR but in lifestyle.

Secondly, there is nothing wrong with studying an academic degree.  A degree in Politics and Sociology is not going to hold me back.

Thirdly, most jobs requiring a degree don't require specific subjects, as long as you have a 2:1.

And for the record, Politics is not a "pointless" subject.  It is rather challenging.

From the age of 14 I wanted to go to university (as a result of going on a school trip to a university in London.)  I didn't know exactly what I wanted to study, but I always knew that no matter what, I wanted to succeed in education, and I always knew that I wanted to further myself academically, and I knew that university would be a great place for me to go through a phase of personal development.  I didn't know what I wanted to study (at one point I considered studying law or cosmetic science!)  I have always enjoyed social science and humanities at school, and I have always been good at these subjects so I decided to study an essay-based subject.  I considered so many: law, politics, history, international relations, history of art, sociology, communications and (social) anthropology.  
Ultimately I decided to study a Politics degree.  I had always had an interest in politics and find it interesting..  Plus I knew it would be a useful degree.  I didn't know what I wanted to do for a career but I had a few ideas - journalism, PR & communications, advertising, media, marketing, public affairs or social policy.  Regardless of what career I get into after graduation, I know that I want a very successful career and a politics degree will not get in the way of that - in fact I knew it would be useful, and it would prepare me and keep my career options open.

However, after studying a foundation year in Social Science I decided to study a joint honours degree in Politics and Sociology. I studied a lot of sociology and social welfare topics in my foundation year so I decided I wanted to study sociology as part of my degree.

Now I am in my final year.

All in all, I enjoy my degree.  Even though I don't plan on pursuing a career in relation to politics or sociology, I don't regret my degree choice.  I know what I want to do for a job but if I could turn back the clock I would still pick the same subjects again.

No comments