Bible & Religion Careers

Goshen College Alumni

Here are current positions held by some GC bible & religion alumni:

  • Senior and Associate Pastors
  • Youth Pastor
  • Chaplain
  • Social Worker
  • Lawyer
  • Missionary
  • Policy Advocate
  • Elementary School Teacher
  • High School Teacher
  • Cancer Research Technician
  • Organic Farmer
  • Photographer
  • Service Adventure Leader
  • Winter Shelter Coordinator


From the American Academy of Religion:

“Religion has always been with us. Throughout history, it has expressed the deepest questions human beings can ask, and it has taken a central place in the lives of virtually all civilizations and cultures. As we think all the way back to the dawn of human consciousness, we find religion everywhere we turn.”

A major in Bible and religion is of particular value to students contemplating graduate study in Bible, religion or theology, mission and service occupations in the church, or broader pastoral work. Regardless of their future occupations, majors are given a strong foundation for careful reading of texts, thinking theologically, considering the relevance of faith for their daily lives, and active participation in congregational life.

About the Coursework

The Bible and religion major is designed to provide students with an introduction to biblical studies and the academic study of Christian and other religious traditions, while affirming their faith and orienting them toward the value that the Anabaptist tradition places upon the Bible and the church.

The major requires courses on the content and methods of biblical study, church history, theology, ethics and philosophy, and culminates in a senior seminar in narrative theology. Potential courses include:

  • Jesus and the Gospels
  • Asian Thought
  • Biblical Themes of Peace
  • Judaism
  • History of Mennonites in America
  • Ethics and Morality
  • Spiritual Writings of Women
  • Hebrew Scripture: Wisdom & Psalms

For a full list of requirements and courses, refer to the course catalog.

Students interested in the Bible and religion major may also want to consider the youth ministry major, which is designed as pre-seminary preparation for work in youth ministry or other church ministries.

Possible Career Paths

The possible career choices are broad for every major. Recent Bible and religion graduates have gone on to become pastors, service workers, professors, hospital chaplains, teachers, journalists, public relations consultants, lawyers, farmers, computer analyst, musicians, artists, business executives, translators, and church administrators.

Bible and religion graduates have been accepted to some of the most prestigious graduate programs in the country, including Harvard Divinity School, University of Notre Dame, Emory University and University of Chicago.

The list below provides additional career options, but it is not exhaustive. Please note that some positions require additional education.

  • Archivist
  • Campus religious coordinator
  • Church administrator
  • Church camp director
  • Clergy member
  • Day-care center worker
  • Diplomat
  • Evangelist
  • Family/marriage counselor
  • Grant writer
  • Historian
  • Hospice director
  • Hospital/military/prison chaplain
  • Librarian
  • Missionary
  • Music minister
  • Newspaper/magazine journalist
  • Non-profit worker
  • Nursing home director
  • Peace Corps worker
  • Political scientist
  • Professor
  • Rehabilitation counselor
  • Religious bookstore manager
  • Religious education director
  • Seminary administrator
  • Social worker
  • Voluntary service worker
  • Writer
  • Youth counselor

Additional Resources

Explore Ministry
from the Fund for Theological Education

Why Study Religion?
sponsored by the American Academy of Religion

Mennonite Mission Network

About Pastoral Counseling
from the American Association of Pastoral Counselors

From the Occupational Outlook Handbook: