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Think Tank Director

Degree: Popular Culture

Margaret J. King, Ph.D., is director of the Center for Cultural Studies & Analysis, a think tank in Philadelphia. According to King, the graduate degree in popular culture that she earned in 1972 from Bowling Green State University was the first to be awarded. “Those were the days when studying comic books, gaming, fashion and film was considered an oddity — not a very useful one,” she told CNBC.com in an e-mail.

After stints in publishing, teaching and writing, she found her niche in her current position. “I have parlayed my degree into a career as a think-tank director and cultural analyst for major corporations, theme parks, and NASA, using my interests and building models that make this work on the ground as audience analysis. I have greatly enjoyed taking what is considered marginal and turning it into a serious study of culture,” she told CNBC.com. She said that although her salary varies, “my opportunities to earn are far higher than they might be as a professor.”

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