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New global affairs major now available to Notre Dame undergraduates

The new global affairs major enables students to learn how interdisciplinary, policy-oriented research and scholarship can drive constructive change.

University of Notre Dame students can now declare a full academic major in global affairs and earn an undergraduate degree from the Keough School of Global Affairs. The new global affairs major enables students to learn how interdisciplinary, policy-oriented research and scholarship can drive constructive change.

“This exciting interdisciplinary program of study was created in response to consistent and growing interest from students,” said R. Scott Appleby, the Marilyn Keough Dean of the Keough School. “Notre Dame students want to learn how to navigate the interconnected, multicultural world they will face upon graduation — and how to address daunting global challenges that include climate change, resource wars and ungovernable flows of migrants and refugees.”

The new major will culminate in a Bachelor of Arts degree in global affairs. Curricular highlights include a cross-cultural experience, an interdisciplinary seminar that models how to integrate and apply knowledge from various disciplines and apply it to global issues, and an ethics seminar that will analyze how moral reasoning functions in professional and public settings relevant to global affairs.

“An exemplary liberal arts education produces independent thinkers with the capacity to maintain a broad outlook, see connections and integrate the subjects and methods best suited for enlightened and humane decision-making,” Appleby said. “The Keough School faculty is prepared to foster these capacities in undergraduates, who can now make the school their primary academic home.”

The major builds upon the diverse expertise of Keough School faculty members — trained in disciplines and subdisciplines such as global politics, cultural anthropology, social psychology, human rights, peace studies, environmental policy, development economics, social and theological ethics, religion, social entrepreneurship, international organizations and global trade — as well as supplemental majors, minors and co-curricular and extracurricular opportunities in the Keough School’s nine international institutes. The new major also is a key part of Notre Dame’s plan to become more fully international and engaged with the worlds of policy and practice.

The Keough School of Global Affairs was founded in 2014. In keeping with Notre Dame’s mission to place scholarship in service to the common good, the Keough School advances integral human development through research, policy and practice; transformative educational programs; and partnerships for global engagement. The Keough School builds on the strengths of nine institutes and a Global Policy Initiative focused on international research, scholarship and education at Notre Dame.

To learn more, visit keough.nd.edu/undergrad/global-affairs-major/.

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