Why Study History?
Welcome to the UNH Department of History! One question that we often hear is why study history? It's a deceptively simple question with a potentially long answer. Let me give you a few reasons to major in history — and to consider majoring in history at UNH.
UNH's Department of History is one of the top history departments in the country, with an internationally recognized faculty in American, European, and World and Ancient history. Members of our department have won some of the most important prizes in the profession, including the Pulitzer and Bancroft prizes. You may have come across UNH History professors on NPR or seen our faculty on PBS, C-SPAN, TLC, and the History Channel. Surveys of scholarly productivity among faculty at research universities have placed us among the top twenty History departments nationwide.
But what really sets our faculty apart is that we love to teach. History majors at UNH take almost all of their ten required classes with tenured or tenure-track faculty. Three of those classes must be upper level courses on a wide array of subjects, including the Roman Empire, modern U.S. foreign policy, China's Cultural Revolution, medieval Islam, and the American Revolution, among many others (you can find a full list of courses here.) Every major also takes an introductory seminar on historical writing and analysis, and the major concludes with a senior colloquium that gives students the opportunity to conduct in-depth research on a topic of their choosing. History is a demanding major, but our students tell us it's worth the effort.
Students and parents often ask "what can you do with a History major?" The answer is practically anything you want. Graduates from our department have attended some of the top graduate programs in the country, including Johns Hopkins, Michigan, Wisconsin, the University of Virginia, and Harvard. Many become teachers, but History majors also go into law, medicine, and business, as well as careers in technology, international relations, politics, and the media. According to our alumni, the History major prepares students well for the intellectual flexibility and ability to think outside the box that today's job market demands.
We understand that choosing a major can be difficult, and we know that you probably have other choices. If you would like, I would be happy to arrange a time to meet in person or to speak by phone or email. My email address is Eliga.Gould@unh.edu; you can also reach me by calling the department office at (603)862-1764 or 862-1765.
With very best wishes,
Eliga H. Gould
Professor and Department Chair
Department of History | Phone (603) 862-1764 | Fax (603) 862-1502
423 Horton Social Science Center | 20 Academic Way | Durham, NH 03824