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Undergraduate Program in Africana Studies

Western civilization has been a reliable means to understand world cultures for many generations, but the rapidly changing demography of the Americas and the world requires a more profound awareness of cultural resources by thinkers of color. As seekers after human truth, African Americanists and Africanists should test traditional assumptions about race to help students make more enlightened choices for themselves and their civilization. The primary objective of an Africana Studies curriculum, regardless of race or color, is education for positive and productive citizenship. Through the study of such disciplines as history, politics, economics, culture, literature, sociology and psychology, the program aims to engender an appreciation of diversity and emphasize the ways in which Africans, and people of African descent in the Americas, have constructed and interpreted their own lives and cultures. Upon successful completion of the program of study students (majors and minors) should have acquired the skills, knowledge, and abilities to:

  • conduct independent research on selected Africana topics,
  • conduct power analyses of a social/civil/institutional milieu,
  • write critical essays using secondary sources,
  • communicate orally and in writing the histories of African-descended people,
  • use technology to advance professional and personal goals,
  • recognize the major contributions African-descended peoples made to the development of world civilizations, and
  • understand the functionality of Africana Studies at academic institutions.

Africana Studies faculty will strive to:

  • provide students with an interdisciplinary understanding of the Black experience in Africa, the United States, and other areas of the Diaspora;
  • foster research on African and African-American issues;
  • provide conceptual frameworks to illuminate the causes and effects of Africana people's subordination and their struggle for liberation;
  • prepare students to think critically, to express themselves creatively, to respect cultural diversity, and to make independent and rational judgments;
  • contribute to the elimination of racism and the creation of a more equitable society by offering new knowledge and research paradigms;
  • encourage shared expertise with the community and maintain a community service component that promotes special classes, symposia, forums; and contribute to the intellectual, cultural, and spiritual growth of the community;
  • promote internships that allow students to integrate their academic and practical knowledge; and
  • reinforce the study of cultural ideals and provide a liberal education in values and wisdom.