The American studies program at Salve Regina is an interdisciplinary major in which students and faculty together draw upon multiple fields of study to critically analyze the meaning and influence of U.S. history and culture.
Students in the program focus on the question of national identity: What characteristics, traditions, ideas and values shape the American people and their institutions? Students explore American culture through the lens of diverse academic fields, such as art, economics, film, history, literature, music, philosophy, politics, religion and sociology in order to examine the nation’s intellectual and social foundations.
Our curriculum is divided into three parts: four foundational American studies courses; five courses from American arts, cultural and historic preservation, literature, history and philosophy; and five elective courses chosen in consultation with the major’s adviser and with approval from the program coordinator. Students majoring in American studies also produce an original piece of scholarly research and present it publicly during their senior year.
Beyond campus, internship opportunities in private businesses, nonprofit agencies and government services allow students to gain practical work experience while applying and enhancing their knowledge of America’s culture and identity. Study abroad allows students to compare national cultures and view American society from a new perspective, while field trips, academic conferences and research conducted for the senior thesis project engage them intellectually beyond the classroom.
Our majors are characterized by their ability to think critically, make intellectual connections and communicate effectively. The broad and rigorous education our students receive prepares them for graduate school and careers in a wide variety of fields, including business, education, government, journalism, law and the nonprofit sector.