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Egyptologist

Odds of Getting In

This is where the romantic idea of a life spent studying the ancient peoples of the Nile River delta meets the harsh reality of getting into such an incredibly specific field. Egyptology departments in universities routinely turn people away because of the reality of the job market. 

Egyptologists are mostly in their fifties and sixties, but the people who will replace them are already working as their successors in many cases. This is why everyone specializes and acquires secondary skills that could help them get hired.

For example, a subfield in Egyptian archaeology is epigraphy or the mechanical reproduction of archaeological sites with scale mechanical drawings and reprints—kind of a mouthful but really important. This specialization is used to create permanent and accurate records of what a site looks like at any stage of time. 

Epigraphers need artistic skills like drawing and must be familiar with photography, drafting, and architecture not to mention being able to read hieroglyphs and understand Egyptian art and history.

That may seem like a lot to know but it also increases the odds of using what you know to get paid. The more secondary skills and flexibility you have, the more likely you are to find work.

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