Careers

Study Irish Language and Literature. Do Anything.

What can I do with a Irish Language and Literature major?

Our students leave Notre Dame having received an education that enriches their understanding of the humanities and world culture and translates to any number of careers.

Studying Irish provides students incredible experiences in and out of the classroom. The small classes taught by dedicated professors help develop critical thinking and communication skills in both English and Irish while allowing students to engage deeply in a variety of topics relating to Ireland.

Skills you'll learn

  • Effective oral communication
  • Strong writing
  • Team Work
  • Critical thinking and analytical reasoning
  • Ability to apply knowledge to real-world settings
  • Ethical judgement and decision making
  • Ability to analyze and solve problems with people from different backgrounds
  • Global perspective from a deep understanding of a other cultures

Kristina Hamilton

Trad Planning Manager, General Mills

“It’s not something you can learn anywhere else.”

As a first-year student, Kristina Hamilton took an Irish language class on a whim and loved it. Just six months later, she found herself on the west coast of Ireland, living with an Irish family, immersed in an intensive language program, and gaining an unforgettable cultural education

  • Kristina Hamilton

    Trad Planning Manager, General Mills

    “It’s not something you can learn anywhere else.”

    As a first-year student, Kristina Hamilton took an Irish language class on a whim and loved it. Just six months later, she found herself on the west coast of Ireland, living with an Irish family, immersed in an intensive language program, and gaining an unforgettable cultural education

  • Liam Stewart

    Political Science Major

    “Every student, regardless of major, can benefit from learning a second or third language—particularly one as beautiful and unique as Irish." 

    In his first year at Notre Dame, Stewart was awarded a full scholarship spend four weeks studying Irish in rural Donegal. “It was one of the greatest experiences of my life,” he says. “It has forever changed how I view the world.”

     

  • Jack McGinn

    Double major in mathematics and Irish language and literature

    “Majoring in Irish language and literature has been a life-changing decision.

    It has offered unbelievable opportunities which have developed me academically, professionally, and personally.”

    McGinn also received grant funding to complete two internships in Dublin and three summer language immersion programs that included staying with an Irish-speaking host family.

  • Kathleen Bracke

    Owner, Hallibrack Films

    “Notre Dame really provided me with the resources I needed to pursue what I love."

    Kathleen Bracke won a prestigious Princess Grace Award to produce her senior thesis film, focusing on themes of cultural loss. Bracke wrote the script entirely in the Irish language and shot it on the remote Irish island of Inishbofin with a cast of native Irish speakers. As an undergraduate at Notre Dame, she also received grants to work on three documentary films in Ireland.

     

  • Rae Moors

    Ph.D. Student at University of Michigan

    “I'm still in awe at the richness of Irish history and literature, which still pushes me to investigate other cultures with the same depth of inquiry as I gave to my Irish studies. This skill is immensely useful in a globalized world.

    I tell everyone I meet that they should take an Irish language course.”


     

93% of recent Notre Dame Irish Language and Literature majors and minors found full-time employment, enrolled in graduate schools, entered service programs, joined the military, or launched independent projects within six months of graduation.

23% find full-time jobs

  • Associate director, Community Counseling Services
  • Member advocate, PURE Insurance
  • Research assistant, Rand Corporation
  • Security specialist, Select Medical
  • Teacher, Great Hearts Academy

Our alumni leave Notre Dame with an expansive worldview and a variety of real-world skills.

Employers love that our students are passionate, curious, and socially engaged. Once on the job, they find that our graduates are critical thinkers, problem solvers, innovators, and collaborators.

They are the embodiment of Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters’ motto: our students study everything so that they can do anything.

27% go to graduate or professional school

  • Archaeology: University of Arizona
  • Conflict transformation and social justice: Queen’s University Belfast
  • English: Boston College
  • Gender studies: University of Wisconsin
  • Medical physics: University of Kentucky
  • Medicine: Louisiana State University

Going on to graduate or professional school after earning a degree in Irish Language and Literature is a fantastic opportunity to branch out into a new area or dive in-depth into a subject focused on as an undergraduate. 

31% enter service programs

  • Alliance for Catholic Education
  • House of Brigid
  • Indianapolis Teaching Fellows

Postgraduate service can be a life-changing experience and provide students with transferable skills for the next step in their careers.

4% join the miliary

8% launch independent projects

Learn More

Send us an email to learn more about enrolling as a major, supplementary major, or minor.

Source: Outcomes data comes from Notre Dame Center for Career Development's first destination reports2012–2016. 

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