Ethnic and Area Studies at Messiah College
Do you have a deep desire to learn about and understand
other cultures and their traditions? Are you concerned about social
justice and racial reconciliation? If so, then majoring in Ethnic and
Areas Studies at Messiah is something you’ll definitely want to
In this major, you’ll gain a multidisciplinary understanding of culture combined with an in-depth knowledge of at least one culture or cultural/racial/ethnic tradition. The program’s goal is to teach students how to apply this knowledge to become effective agents of social change and reconciliation.
Messiah’s Ethnic and Area Studies major is unique to other similar programs in two important ways:
- In addition to the major’s core courses, you also can focus on one of three specific areas – U.S. Ethnic Studies, African and African American Studies or Asian Studies.
- Messiah’s program offers a unique dual focus of conflict resolution AND cultural understanding.
Ethnic and area studies major distinctives
As an Ethnic and Areas Studies major at Messiah College, you’ll be able to:
- Choose from a concentration in U.S. Ethnic Studies, African and African American Studies or Asian Studies.
- Learn theories of culture, ethnicity, race and identity.
- Gain understanding of cultural diversity in the U.S. and other world cultures.
- Learn about historical experiences and contemporary challenges of at least one ethnic/racial/cultural group.
- Learn a variety of Christian theological understandings of culture and cultural diversity.
- Be prepared for jobs that require cross-cultural knowledge and understanding.
- Develop strong research, analysis and communication skills that are of great benefit in many careers.
- Study in a foreign culture at one of the 40 exciting study abroad locations offered by Messiah.
Career options for ethnic and area studies majors
As a graduate of the ethnic and area studies program, students are equipped to secure positions in areas such as:
- Non-governmental organizations
For more information on career planning for the ethnic and area studies program, visit the Messiah College Career Center.
Internship opportunities for ethnic and area studies majors
Messiah’s nationally recognized Internship Center helps place students in a variety of ethnic and area studies internships. A few examples include:
Learn more about the Department of Biblical and Religious Studies
The Biblical and Religious Studies department is housed in the School of Humanities. Learn more about the Department of Biblical and Religious Studies by visiting our website, or check out some of the distinctives below.
- The Department of Biblical and Religious Studies (BRS) has 13 tenure-track faculty members, all with terminal degrees.
- Professors hold Ph.D.s from a variety of prestigious institutions, including University of Chicago, Emory University, Duke University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Drew University, Southern Methodist and Hebrew-Union.
- The BRS faculty have produced a range of books from prestigious publishers including University of Indiana Press, Oxford University Press, T&T Clark, Baker Academic, The Johns Hopkins University Press, Fortress/Augsburg, and Westminster John Knox.
- Faculty research and interests include topics such as hermeneutics, theology and pop culture, Muslim-Christian relations, the Bible in the 19th century slave narrative, reading the Bible non-violently and Amish culture.
- Faculty lead cross-cultural trips to destinations such as Turkey, Israel, Ghana, and Kenya.