By creatively combining courses from several departments to customize your degree program, you can pursue your interests and gain a broader understanding of a complex field that requires knowledge of more than one discipline. For example, one student with an interest in art and biology wants to become a medical illustrator. We offered her the chance to combine her art and science interests to create a major that would best prepare her for this innovative career.
Other examples include Communication and Culture, Politics and Justice, Narrative Inquiry, Nature and Spirituality, Physics and Metaphysics, Religion and Education, and Technology Management. As academically rigorous as any established program of study, all self-designed majors require significant student initiative and close interaction with faculty advisers. There is virtually no limit to the possibilities open to you as a self-designed major. While no two programs are alike, you’ll graduate with a degree that’s relevant to you and to your career goals. If you choose to Venture into the Adventure, you will need a ready supply of initiative and the ability to analyze and synthesize information from many disciplines.
How to Participate
While all students must meet the College’s General Education and other degree requirements for a B.A. or B.S., Venture into the Adventure allows you to chart your own course of exploration. To create your major, you must develop a concept focused on a problem or area of investigation of special interest to you, design a curriculum outline and submit your plan to the appropriate dean for review. Your faculty sponsors are there to guide you as you establish your own learning outcomes and select relevant and appropriate course work and other academic activities (independent research, fieldwork, study abroad) to meet these goals. Students will also complete a senior research project to serve as the capstone for the self-designed major. Typically the senior research component will be conducted over two semesters (e.g., first semester: hypothesis, literature search, preliminary research; second semester: final project and presentation).