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Why History?

“To be ignorant of what occurred before you were born is to remain always a child. For what is the worth of human life, unless it is woven into the life of our ancestors by the records of history?”
Cicero, 106-43 BCE

History provides a critical awareness of the ways that, over time, economic conditions, social classes, political institutions, cultural systems and worldviews have shaped people’s lives. It also explains how the actions of various people, renowned and ordinary, collectively and as individuals, have shaped those historical forces.

Much more than a simple chronicle of events, dates, names and places, history requires analysis and interpretation. Historians tell good stories, but they also seek to explain and understand:

  • Why important events have occurred, how they developed and concluded, and what continuing legacies those events have for us today.
  • What historical events and processes have meant for ordinary people in their personal and collective experience.
  • The degree to which history is shaped by large economic, social, political and cultural forces, and the extent to which individuals and groups exert influence upon these processes.

History at UAS

At the University of Alaska Southeast, you receive individual attention in your history program. After completing a general introduction to U.S., World, or European history, you can pursue specific interests through upper-division courses at UAS, national student exchange programs, and study abroad. In addition to the emphasis in history, you will select two secondary fields in social sciences from anthropology, economics, government, psychology, and sociology. The specific focus in your program will depend upon your personal, academic, and career goals.

Diverse Study Opportunities

Beyond the UAS campus, exciting national and international opportunities allow you to further specialize your individual interests in history.

  • National Student Exchange. At UAS, you may apply to study for a semester or year at another university campus in the U.S. or Canada.
  • Study Abroad. UAS participates in both NCSA/AHA and ISEP international study abroad programs. Each has excellent offerings in history.

These programs will add depth of experience and personal satisfaction to your history program.

Careers in History

History provides an excellent foundation for many future careers. The most often chosen include:

  • Elementary and secondary teaching.
  • Graduate studies in History, American Studies, Library Science, and Museum Studies.
  • Careers in government, journalism, law, and public administration.


Within the B.A. in Social Science program, you may pursue a minor field of study. Minors at UAS that combine well with history are:

  • Alaska Native Studies
  • English
  • Spanish

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