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Department of

Ethnic Studies


Ethnic Studies is a vibrant, interdisciplinary program that allows students to study the historical, cultural, and social dynamics of race and ethnicity in the United States. The Major addresses our shared national legacy of contact, conquest, and resistance through three areas of concentration: History and Identity, Creativity and Spirituality, and Institutions and Activism.

Our core courses thoroughly ground students in theoretical perspectives related to these three themes.  Within these broad categories, students are encouraged to develop their own areas of expertise, as they explore local and national communities of color.  Through community service learning and internships, students are challenged to engage with issues of privilege, difference, inequality, social justice, and empowerment in an applied manner. Ethnic Studies is uniquely situated to provide students with cross-cultural competence, with an historical grounding in domestic social justice issues, and with conflict resolution skills–all essential to civic life in an increasingly diverse nation and world.  Our majors are well prepared for careers in law, education, business, social work, counseling, public health, politics, and graduate study in Ethnic Studies.

Majoring or Minoring in Ethnic Studies at USD

Interested in a career in law, public policy, politics, journalism, education, public health, social work, international relations, community organizing, public relations, urban planning, and other socially-engaged careers? Ethnic Studies is a interdisciplinary field of study that allows students to critically examine the complex dynamics of race and ethnicity in the United States. It is especially committed to developing critical thinking skills and compassionate social engagement. Whether you are taking this course for a graduation requirement, personal interest, or curiosity, we invite you to explore the possibilities of an Ethnic Studies major or minor. For more information, please contact your professor or visit us at the Department of Ethnic Studies located in Maher Hall 210. You may be closer to an Ethnic Studies major, minor, or double major than you realize!