Program Description

The History Department sees its mission as one of enabling students to make sense of the world that they are inheriting. In order to do this, they must be grounded in their own historical experience, which should be placed within an emerging international context. In addition, our students should recognize the on going tensions over the nature of identity: ethnic, racial, national, and global. To this end, we hope to develop ways to analyze issues that confront them as citizens of communities, nations, and the world. Our students should expect to confront issues of social responsibility, human rights and dignity, and their role in supporting and encouraging social justice.

The History Major systematically exposes students to three principal culture areas: the United States, Europe and the non-Western world. Within that framework, students have ample opportunity to pursue, in consultation with their advisors, specialized interests as career, life or further educational goals may require. While we do not require study of a modern foreign language, we strongly recommend that path.

A study of history provides students with a wide variety of skills both for living and for work. A comprehension of the past and the dynamics of change illuminates the present and enables students not only to exercise responsible citizenship, but but to enjoy autonomy in an increasingly complex world. Too, the study and understanding of history, as with other of the liberal arts, instills or enhances a capacity for analysis and synthesis; and these transferable skills have applicability to a wide range of careers. History opens the door to graduate studies or professional schools, for example law school or secondary education. The history curriculum also makes a particular effort to advance a central mission of Marist College, to enhance our students' awareness of enduring value-related issues.

The discipline also offers a concentration in public history, a new profession. Government, law firms and multinational corporations now employ historians in order to base their planning on an accurate understanding of the past. We expect this movement to provide many entry-level positions for properly educated history majors. Students interested in such a concentration should discuss their objectives with their advisors.