&. Just a symbol. The shortest part of the College of Arts & Letters. Easy to overlook.
But & defines our students — what they do in their time at Notre Dame and where they go after graduation. Their intellectual curiosity is insatiable. They want to study everything. They major in Economics & English or Music & Neuroscience. They dabble in courses in Philosophy & French & Art History. They add a minor in International Development Studies or Japanese or Collaborative Innovation because they’re fascinated by the subject. They do research with professors in Anthropology & American Studies because they want to learn more. They take seminars in Latino Studies & Film & Sociology to enhance their writing, speaking, and critical thinking skills. As they carry those abilities and that passion for knowledge into the world, their potential is limitless. Arts & Letters students get exciting first jobs, enter prestigious graduate programs, or make the world a better place through full-time service programs. But their journey doesn’t end there. Their Arts & Letters experience has prepared them to do anything — to add more &s as they become leaders at work, in their communities, and around the world.
LIBERAL ARTS When he got to Notre Dame, Corey Robinson didn’t know what to study — & that’s because he wanted to major in everything. He met with advisers in more than 20 departments, considering everything from Arts & Letters pre-health to Irish language and literature to aquatic biology. But he still wasn’t sure. That’s when his advising dean suggested the Program of Liberal Studies. “It’s a holistic liberal arts major where you get to study history, literature, theology, and politics. You get to study opera, film, and art,” he says. “It’s everything I wanted in one major, and it’s been the best decision of my life.”
Program of Liberal Studies & service & sustainability & Portuguese & economics & student body president & film & climate change research & varsity football & guitar
He’s also added a minor in sustainability, studied Portuguese and economics, and taken classes in film, television, and theatre. A broad liberal arts education has strengthened his ability to see connections between disparate fields and better understand other perspectives. “It’s expanded my horizons. It’s taught me to think critically, to analyze and interpret data,” he says. “And the liberal arts have shown me that there are many sides to every argument. If you can appreciate someone else’s perspective, you can establish common ground and work together toward a solution.”
Corey has already put those skills to use in the world. He spent a summer doing service work in Brazil. He’s studied abroad in South Africa and Israel. And he’s interned with the Notre Dame Global Adaptation Index, compiling data on climate change and researching improper agricultural land use. He built a senior thesis project on that research, applying the philosophy he studies in PLS to the practical, real-time issue of deforestation in Brazil. On campus, Corey serves as student body president, championing issues of sustainability, diversity, and community engagement. He starred as a wide receiver on the varsity football team. He plays guitar in an indie rock band. And he founded a nonprofit in which college athletes encourage children to pursue higher education.
Now, Corey is considering a career in sustainable investing — but his experiences in Arts & Letters will continue to serve him no matter where he goes. “The most valuable thing about a Notre Dame liberal arts education is that it doesn’t just train excellent doctors or consultants or scholars,” he says. “The liberal arts train excellent young men and women who will go into whatever field they choose and do the right thing and live lives of excellence and integrity.”
Choose from nearly 70 different majors and minors in the College.
Whether the subjects you’re passionate about focus on the past, the present, or the future, the liberal arts unlock endless opportunities to be curious, creative & collaborative. They’re your gateway to studying fossils and ancient civilizations. They’re your ticket to exploring global cultures and
modern philosophical, political, and economic issues. They’re your passport to analyzing depictions of other worlds in literature, film, and television. Through a Notre Dame liberal arts education, you’re encouraged to grapple with the enduring questions and current challenges that confront society. You’ll learn to read critically and analyze data, to write crisply and speak persuasively — all in preparation for becoming the
The College fosters research and study that further social justice and serve the common good.
professional, community, and Church leaders our world needs. With the freedom to study what you love and explore new topics — through interdisciplinary coursework, seminarstyle classes, and close interaction with world-class faculty — you will broaden your view of the world, find a greater sense of purpose, and develop a skill set that will help you flourish no matter where your path leads.
Faculty members often invite classes to visit their homes for food and fellowship.
The College of Arts & Letters is home to more than 3,000 undergraduates and 1,100 graduate students.
Sara Abdel-Rahim found her voice in the liberal arts—& she amplified it through research, internships, and leadership roles on campus. “The College of Arts & Letters has helped me build confidence in so many different ways — academically, socially, and personally,” she says. “The liberal arts teach you to engage with issues and to be part of conversations you might not otherwise. I wouldn’t have this inquisitive nature — or the ability to act on it — if I hadn’t been here.” As a first-generation American citizen, the political science and Arabic major wants to battle against cultural and religious discrimination. She’s delved into issues of immigration and integration through research projects, studied public policy during a semester of classes and internships at think tanks in Washington, D.C., and
Collaborative innovation is one of many interdisciplinary programs for Arts & Letters students.
worked side-by-side with a professor analyzing concepts of citizenship after the French Revolution. For Sara — a Dean’s Fellow and president of the Muslim Student Association — the College’s emphasis on community fostered countless opportunities for her to engage in intercultural and interreligious dialogue with her peers.
70% of Arts & Letters classes have fewer than 20 students.
500 employers visit campus every year to recruit students.
As she’s heading to Greece after winning a Fulbright research grant, her voice is stronger and more confident than ever. “Don’t be afraid of what makes you different,” she says. “At Notre Dame, that can be what allows you to flourish — to forge your own path and become a leader.”
35 student clubs focus on the performing arts, in addition to opportunities in the Department of Film, Television, and Theatre, the Department of Music, and Shakespeare at Notre Dame.
The College offers instruction in 20 different foreign languages.
Rachel Ganson’s path in the College of Arts & Letters has led her to China, India, Iceland, Italy, and Spain — & to exactly where she is meant to be. “Visiting these places has challenged me and helped me grow as a person — intellectually, spiritually, emotionally,” she says. “When you experience different cultures and have conversations with people from different backgrounds, you start to figure out what you’re most passionate about and what you hold dear.”
For Rachel, a political science major, that passion is food security and sustainability.
Political science & Italian & international law & food security & study abroad & internships & service work & interhall sports & theatre & boxing
She’s spent summers doing service work in Beijing at a foster home for disabled children, interning at a think tank in New Delhi focused on education policy and entrepreneurial activity, and in Reykjavik researching an interest she developed in sustainable fishing practices. Each of these experiences — all funded by Notre Dame — helped her find her niche.
one of the most overfished areas in the world. She spent part of her junior year and the following summer taking classes and researching the issue in Notre Dame’s Rome International Scholars Program. That work, along with further research in Spain over a fall break, forms the basis for her senior thesis on the environmental consequences of overfishing and the efficacy of international law and interstate cooperation.
“I’ve been able to go from a broad desire to explore other cultures, to an interest in international justice, to a passion for international food security,” she says. “And I am so in love with what I’m doing now. This just fits me so well.”
A Hesburgh-Yusko Scholar, Rachel also volunteers at the South Bend Center for the Homeless, plays on interhall sports teams, acts in student theatre productions, and competes in Baraka Bouts, a women’s boxing club that raises money for Holy Cross Missions in East Africa.
Rachel, who also has minors in Italian and philosophy, politics, and economics (PPE), set her sights on the Mediterranean —
After graduation, she will join a full-time service program before beginning
law school and preparing for a career in international law. “Having such diverse experiences and support along the way has really encouraged me to think about where I want to be — and given me the confidence to continue pursuing that after college,” she says. “And when I get to where I feel I can do the most good, I’m going to be the most effective leader I can be.”
Your Arts & Letters experience doesn’t stop at the edge of campus. It extends across the country and around the world. Through Notre Dame’s unique network of Global Gateways, you can live and learn in major international cities. The academic and intellectual hubs allow scholars, students, and leaders from universities,
government, business, and the community to gather and discuss issues of topical and enduring relevance. Notre Dame’s study abroad programs take students to more than three dozen locations, from Dakar and Berlin to Santiago and Hong Kong. About 70 percent of Arts & Letters majors spend a semester or a summer abroad studying or conducting research, learning to see the world in new ways. International experiences open up a world of opportunities. The College, as well as
Arts & Letters pre-health major Jesusislord Nwadiuko studied health care issues in China.
centers and institutes across campus, offer generous funding for students to pursue research, language learning, and internship opportunities around the world. Significant support is available to students applying for prestigious fellowships — part of the reason the College of Arts & Letters is a top producer of Fulbrights, the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program. No matter where you end up, the Notre Dame global community will be there, with more than 270 alumni clubs across the U.S. and in 50 international cities.
Italian major Andrew Guinan’s study abroad experience in Rome led to a summer internship.
Theology major Jenna Ahn received Notre Dame grants to spend two summers working with the Missionaries of Charity in India.
The Berlin Summer Program offers students the chance to spend six weeks in Germany’s capital and cultural center.
Emmie Mediate learned a lot while she was traveling —& she learned even more when she got back. An Africana studies and Arts & Letters pre-health major, Emmie made three trips to Uganda to conduct research, complete an internship, and enhance her senior thesis. Each experience was fully funded through Notre Dame grants and closely connected to her passion — global health.
Emmie also studied abroad in London and traveled to the Netherlands and Sweden to conduct research during a winter break. Each experience helped her grow intellectually and helped pave the way for her next step — becoming a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University.
“Traveling internationally really enlivened the work that I did back at Notre Dame. We’d be discussing Africa in class and I’d be able to connect it back to my experiences in the real world,” Emmie says. “Or sometimes, I’d study something that was contradictory to what I saw.
“The biggest thing Notre Dame has instilled in me is a sense of concern for others,” she says. “A lot of the passion I have for my work in Uganda and my future goals comes from a sense that there’s something bigger out there to fight for — and I want to be a part of that.”
“That challenged my research and made me keep digging deeper.”
Notre Dame students can study abroad in 26 countries, including Russia.
Chinese major John Fox spent an immersive summer studying at Peking University and exploring cultural sites in Beijing.
Political science and economics major Daniela Cabada spent fall break in Havana, Cuba, attending a conference hosted by Notre Dame’s Institute for Latino Studies.
La Telenovela American Ruins Booked: Prison Literature Humankind Unplugged Confronting Homelessness The Christian Imagination From Rasputin to Putin History of Detective Fiction Wisdom of Folk Tales Classical Heroes Revisited Satire: Jonathan Swift to Jon Stewart Soundscapes of African-American Literature Dying for Love in Two Genres Collaborative Product Design Sociology and Violence One Jesus and His Many Portraits Athenian Acropolis in Context Mysteries of the Past Europe in the Age of Revolution Inner City America The Making of Market Society Roman Criminal Law Witnessing the Sixties Metaphysics and Epistemology Food and the Brain Psychology of Personality Metamorphosis of Journalism Sustainability: Principles and Practices Caribbean Diasporas Police Cultures
RECENT COURSE OFFERINGS
That Eighties Class History of Medical Sciences Japanese Pop Culture French Tensions: Graphic Novels Society and Spirit Death in America Media and Presidential Elections China’s Long 20th Century Christianity and the Challenge of Buddhism Oil in American History Sex and Gender in Antiquity God and the Good Life Ancient Japan Creature Poetry Latinos in the Future of America Notre Dame and its Artifacts Beauty, Being, and the Infinite Health, Medicine, and Society Art in Chicago From Plato to Pope Francis Ecologies of the Self Programming for Video Game Development Western Art: Leonardo to Warhol The Roots of the Ring: Richard Wagner and J.R.R. Tolkien Russia in Revolution Bioarchaeology Medieval Monstrosity History of Television Science Fiction and Reproduction The Geopolitics of Energy
RECENT COURSE OFFERINGS
Landscapes of Urban Education Constructing a Good Life Unsolved Historical Mysteries Robot Ethics Design for Social Good Sociology of War and Terror The Roots of Human Trafficking Saints, Relics, and Sacred Sites in Late Antiquity Game Theory Storytelling, Memory, and Place Rich, Poor, and War Tale of Two Depressions Buried History of Ancient Cities Birth and Death of Democracies Beginning Quechua American Public Opinion and Voting Behavior Cultures of Fear: Horror Films Beginning Creole Moral Problems Christianity, Commerce, and Consumerism Ballads to Hip-Hop Extreme Photography Fashioning American Identities Great Speeches The Stories of Medieval Ireland and Wales Discipleship: Loving Action Home and Dome Experimental Printmaking Humor and Power
RECENT COURSE OFFERINGS
RECENT COURSE OFFERINGS
In the College of Arts & Letters, every class is a chance to expand your intellectual horizons. No matter which one of our 40 majors you choose, you’ll have the flexibility to explore topics outside your discipline — just because they sound fascinating. Whether it’s a requirement or an elective, all of our courses broaden your knowledge base, expose you to new ways of thinking, and shape the way you see the world.
On Humor: Understanding Italy Architecture Which Hurts and Heals Digital Culture, Digital Self Youth Sports and the Urban Poor Philosophy of Physics Health Economics Sports and American Culture Greek and Roman Mythology Utopian and Dystopian Literature and Politics Arabic Short Stories Love Stories from Africa Ancient Wisdom and Modern Love Artificial Intelligence Jim Crow Fiction The Hamilton Phenomenon Theatre and Theology Italian Renaissance Art Nasty, Brutish, and Short Broadway Theatre Experience Conjuring the Americas Sports and American Culture Dystopias and the Family Religion and Musical Drama Power, Privilege, and Oppression Trojan War Tragedies Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley Tokyo Stories Unlocking Human Potential Science and Pseudoscience in Psychology Theology of Poverty
One visit to the Hesburgh Library’s medieval manuscripts collection & Luke Donahue was hooked. “I saw them and thought, ‘This is it. This is what I want to study,’” Luke says. “I was intrigued that there are all these manuscripts from the Middle Ages that no one has researched, and I was determined — I wanted to help fill that intellectual gap.” That experience in his first-semester German class significantly shaped his Notre Dame education. While he initially planned to study physics, Luke decided to major in theology and German and minor in medieval studies. He studied abroad in Germany and received University funding to spend two more months there examining medieval manuscripts.
about,” he says. “I think interdisciplinary connections are something we really benefit from. For me, that has meant seeing how Western history and literary tradition have been shaped by theology.” Luke’s research experience helped him learn field-specific skills in paleography as well as broader skills that will be valuable in graduate school and beyond. “Research takes a lot of discipline,” he says. “It also increased my critical thinking and taught me how to engage with texts on a broader, interdisciplinary level.”
Theology & German & medieval studies & tuba & honors program & marching band & senior thesis & spiritual life
Now, his academic interests are culminating in a senior thesis, in which he translates a set of medieval German prayers to Mary and investigates the lives of the nuns who wrote them. “This is exactly what the College of Arts & Letters is — and should be — all
Luke, a member of the Glynn Family Honors Program, participates in a Marian devotion group on campus. He plays tuba in the marching band and hockey pep band. And he spent two summers participating in service programs, working with the homeless and providing spiritual education for children and teens. Through it all, he sees Notre Dame’s Catholic identity as a common thread. “My work is distinctly connected to and informed by my faith,” he says. “But anything you do at Notre Dame can be
part of the Catholic mission and our commitment to Catholic social justice and education.” Maybe you already know what topics excite you. Maybe you’ll discover them once you’re here. Either way, Arts & Letters is the place to delve into them. “If there’s something you’re interested in, explore it. Your faculty advisers can help you find ways to pursue any subject in depth,” he says. “Connecting with my professors for my research gave me greater insight into who I am and what I want to do.”
In the College of Arts & Letters, you’re learning from the best— faculty at the forefront of their fields, from Shakespeare to the philosophy of religion to quantitative psychology. But they’re not just teaching you what they know. They’re teaching you how to create knowledge — ways to blend your interests and skills to conduct original research that expands our understanding of the world around us.
A culture of research excellence flows through the College. Our faculty have won more National Endowment for the Humanities fellowships than any other university since 1999. Our students win major awards, from the Rhodes and Truman scholarships to Fulbright grants and Beinecke fellowships.
Through research, our students pursue original projects that combine all of their interests. Perhaps it’s using sociology and Spanish to examine education policy in urban schools. Or drawing on coursework in psychology and theology to study how concepts of God help people cope with trauma.
On-campus grant programs fund student research all around the world — and the number of undergraduates completing a senior thesis surged from 9 percent in 2008 to 43 percent in 2019.
No matter what the topic, the College of Arts & Letters is the place to study everything you love — and undergraduate research offers you the chance to put that passion into practice.
Molly Seidel blended research in sustainability and environmental anthropology in studying the Ice Age Trail in Wisconsin.
A team of students used design thinking skills to place second in a Walt Disney Imagineering competition.
Arts & Letters pre-health students work in the lab during a study abroad program in Puebla, Mexico.
Anthropology major Greg Yungtum went to Uganda to study rural culture and farming practices.
Economics major Melanie Wallskog walked into her professor’s office hours with a question. She walked out with a job — & the start of a promising future in research. After her professor hired her to work on a development economics project in Nicaragua, Melanie served as a research assistant at the Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities and wrote her senior thesis on the relationship between demographics and savings in Ireland. “Going from the classroom — where I had only studied theoretical models — to actually working in the field gave me a much more comprehensive view of what economists actually do,” she says. “It made me very excited about the power of research.” Later, Melanie co-authored a paper with two Notre Dame economics
professors on the effectiveness of a homelessness prevention program in Chicago. Their work was published in Science — the first time anyone from Arts & Letters had appeared in the prestigious journal. Thanks to her Notre Dame research and coursework, Melanie began her Ph.D. at Stanford with full funding from a National Science Foundation graduate research fellowship and an article in Science with her name on it. “I would never have thought to pursue a Ph.D. if I was not doing research,” she says. “My experiences showed me how much research can make a difference in the world.”
Romance languages and literatures and political science major Christina Gutierrez spent time in Costa Rica researching food policy.
Greek and Roman civilization major Joseph Strasz researched medieval Italian poetry while interning at the American Academy in Rome.
Political science and Arabic major Sienna Wdowik worked closely with Professor Michael Desch, studying international nuclear strategy.
The world is constantly evolving. With a foundational education in the liberal arts, you’re not only prepared to keep up with changing times — you’re prepared to thrive in them. of Arts & Letters students find success just six months after graduation.
Arts & Letters students are consistently in demand among top employers. No matter
Top Employers of our recent graduates:
our recent graduates enter:
Booz Allen Hamilton
U.S. Department of Justice
Consulting/ professional services
Government/ public policy
Nonprofit/ social services
Huron Consulting Group PwC Accenture
which major they choose, liberal arts students develop skills and competencies that are vital to success in the modern workforce — critical thinking, written and verbal
start full-time jobs
go to graduate or professional school
16% enter service programs
including four in the past five years Notre Dame students’ medical school acceptance rate
ethical leadership, creative problem-solving, and analytical ability. Whether our
national medical school acceptance rate
students go directly into the workforce or enroll in graduate school or service programs first, the Meruelo Family Notre Dame students’ law school acceptance rate
Center for Career Development
launch independent projects
join the military
were still looking for employment
Independent projects include activities such as writing a novel, making a film or fine arts project, traveling the world, caring for a family member, etc.
Source: Meruelo Family Center for Career Development First Destination Reports, 2014-2018
offers countless ways to help guide them along that journey.” —Ryan Willerton Associate Vice President for Career and Professional Development
including two in 2019
national law school acceptance rate
Do anything. ◄ Linda Wilbert Parish ’77 Senior VP, Bank of America Merrill Lynch
French and Economics
◄ Chris Stevens ’74 Co-founder, Keurig Premium Coffee Systems
◄ Regis Philbin ’53 TV host Sociology
Chris Renner ’84 ► President, Helios Partners global sports marketing consulting agency
No matter what they studied, Arts & Letters graduates go on to find success in a wide variety of fields, all around the world. ◄ Wendy Wang ’06 Head of Talent Management and Diversity, BlackRock
Brian Hainline ’78 ► Chief Medical Officer, NCAA
Hannah Storm ’83 ► Anchor, ESPN’s SportsCenter
Philosophy and Arts and Letters Pre-Health
Government and International Studies
◄ Mary Boyer ’07 Disaster Risk Management Consultant, The World Bank Anthropology and Peace Studies
Carlos Lozada ’93 ► Associate Editor, The Washington Post
Grace Watkins ’17 ► Rhodes Scholar, Oxford University
Pulitzer Prize winner
Paul Appleby ’05 ► Professional opera singer Music and English
◄ Alan Page ’67 Retired Associate Justice, Minnesota Supreme Court
◄ Stephen McFeely ’91 Screenwriter, Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Endgame
Patrick Vassel ’07 ► Associate Director, Hamilton: An American Musical
◄ Anna Scott ’06 Design Director of Footwear, Marc Jacobs Design
Nikole Hannah-Jones ’98 ► Reporter, New York Times Magazine MacArthur ‘Genius Grant’ winner
Economics and Political Science
History and Africana Studies
◄ Evelyn Diaz ’92 President, Heartland Alliance
◄ Betsy Bohlen ’90
Chief Operating Officer, Archdiocese of Chicago
◄ Michael Swanson ’93 Emmy-winning producer and studio executive Film, Television, and Theatre
◄ Sean Reardon ’86 Professor of Poverty and Inequality in Education, Stanford University Program of Liberal Studies
Majors & Minors Majors
Irish Language and Literature
Catholic Social Tradition
Neuroscience and Behavior
Supplementary Majors Africana Studies
Philosophy & Theology
Program of Liberal Studies
Classical Studies: Civilization Classical Studies: Heritage
Cross-college opportunities for A&L students Reilly Dual Degree in Arts and Letters and Engineering
Asian Studies supplementary major and minor
WITH THE COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING
European Studies minor
Applied and Computational Mathematics and Statistics supplementary major
Energy Studies minor
THROUGH THE KEOUGH SCHOOL OF GLOBAL AFFAIRS
Environmental Sciences supplementary major
Collaborative Innovation Computing and Digital Technologies
Statistics supplementary major
Physics supplementary major Sustainability minor THROUGH THE COLLEGE OF SCIENCE
Romance Languages and Literatures
Gender Studies German
Education, Schooling, and Society
Greek and Roman Civilization
Irish Language and Literature
Liturgical Music Ministry
Hesburgh Program in Public Service
Mediterranean/Middle Eastern Studies
Irish Language and Literature
German Greek and Roman Civilization History International Economics
Medieval Studies Pre-Health
Irish Studies minor Peace Studies supplementary major or minor
Film, Television, and Theatre Gender Studies
International Development Studies minor
Compassionate Care in Medicine minor
Mathematics supplementary major
Global Affairs supplementary major
Accountancy minor Digital Marketing minor Innovation & Entrepreneurship minor Real Estate minor THROUGH THE MENDOZA COLLEGE OF BUSINESS
Journalism, Ethics, and Democracy Korean
Philosophy, Politics, and Economics Philosophy, Religion, and Literature Philosophy, Science, and Mathematics
Portuguese and Brazilian Studies Poverty Studies Russian Russian Studies Science, Technology, and Values Sociology Studio Art Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages Theology
Study everything Do anything
“There are many things taught at this University, but at the heart of all of them is the liberal arts. My dream was to make liberal arts the center of all living, which I think it is — because the liberal arts teach us how to be human, in the best intellectual and moral sense.” —Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame, 1952–1987
a l.n d . e du @ArtsLettersND
Explore the wide range of intellectual experiences and exciting career outcomes for students in Notr e Dame's College of Arts & Letters.
Published on Aug 21, 2020
Explore the wide range of intellectual experiences and exciting career outcomes for students in Notr e Dame's College of Arts & Letters.