Presidential impeachment, gun control, racial divisions, the role of ethnic minorities in our society - these and the other critical debates of our time can be understood only in the context of history.
Knowledge of the past helps us to gain a perspective on the issues of the present and of the future; knowledge of the roots of their culture helps citizens to engage the issues of today so that they may shape tomorrow.
The study of history promotes continuity with our past, encourages understanding of social, political, and economic institutions, and provides insight into our cultural heritage.
The members of the History department are dedicated to the teacher-scholar model of professional development. Committed to strong and effective teaching, historical research, and community service, the faculty reflects a variety of teaching and scholarly research specialties. Most are members of major international, national and regional historical associations and are involved actively in research and publishing. Several have held leadership positions in professional organizations like the American Historical Association, the Society of Historians of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, and the International Society for Medieval Canon Law, as well as the Massachusetts Historical Society and the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. And all full time faculty have doctorates. Two important editing projects have been housed in the department: the Winthrop Papers and the Journal of Baltic Studies.
A degree in history may be an end in itself. It is, however, an excellent choice for anyone who wishes to pursue entry into the profession of history. Many recent graduates have gone on to study in the nation's leading graduate schools and now teach in colleges and universities.
For those who wish to teach social studies in secondary schools, our faculty works hard to provide education majors with an understanding of American culture, Western Civilization, and the major cultures of the non-western world.
Other history graduates have found careers in diverse fields including:
- Real Estate
- Government Services
- Historical Preservation
The History department is located on the third floor of the Sanders P. McComsey Hall; most classes, lectures and seminars are held in this building. The McNairy Library has one of the finest collections of books in the field of history and related disciplines in the region. In addition to a large collection of titles in the field of history, the library subscribes to a wide array of historical and related journals, some in hard copy, others in archival microfilm or on-line form. This includes a fine collection of reference and government materials.
An efficient system of interlibrary loans allows students to draw upon even more works, if needed, from research libraries all over the country. Computer workstations in the library and elsewhere on campus allow students ample opportunity to research topics on-line.
For more information, contact Ms. Maggie Eichler, Department Secretary.