Bachelor of Arts in Global Studies
Department of Global Studies and Modern Languages
Drexel Students Find ‘Sanctuaries’ of Cultural Experience, Learning through Spanish-language Global Studies Class –
At Drexel University, the bachelor of arts in Global Studies teaches students to see the world differently as they learn essential skills needed to understand the impact of global political, social, economic and environmental dynamics. This experiential, interdisciplinary and language-based major immerses students in issues and emerging movements such as clean energy, climate action, economic growth, health equity, international relations and other challenges. Students with international study, hands-on work experiences and civic engagement –both at home and abroad– students learn to connect language and culture across academic disciplines. When students learn to examine how the U.S. and other countries fit into broad, worldwide systems they can better develop an international perspective.
Global Studies majors choose from one of four different degree concentrations, a required language or regional studies minor, and optional courses and certificates specially designed to deepen their knowledge and to prepare them to pursue careers across sectors: business, economics, law, policy, public health, and media —to name a few— as well as in non-profit, government, and international organizations. Academically qualified majors are eligible for accelerated degree programs in business administration, communications, or public health where they can earn a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree concurrently.
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Tailor your education to fit your interests by choosing one of four degree concentrations:
Associate Director of Programming and Partnerships
Academic Building, 311
“Amazing,” “supportive,” “relentless” and “sincere” are among the words students use to describe Kate Hughes. Kate's expertise in peace studies, public health, environmental justice and community organizing — along with countless global adventures — make her the perfect resource for students planning their own adventures at Drexel and abroad.
Careers and Co-op
Graduates of our Global Studies program are well equipped to address local, national and international concerns related to climate change and sustainable development, communications and media, government and legal affairs, public health, and emerging social movements. Our exceptional courses and distinctive hands-on approach prepares students to pursue in-demand careers including: academics, business administration, communications, environmental sustainability, global policy, human rights advocacy, law, media planning, public health and social justice. Drexel's international co-op gives our students a distinct advantage in the world economy and makes them more attractive to prospective employers.
Nicole Kalitsi's co-op as the diversity, equity and inclusion coordinator for the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance reinforced her calling to work on community issues.
Meet Our Students
Global Studies majors tailor their education to fit their unique interests by studying, researching and working abroad. Our exceptional courses and distinctive hands-on approach encourages students to expand their horizons and prepares them to pursue in-demand careers.
Catching up with Alexandra J. King Pile, BA International Studies ’07
We recently had the opportunity to catch up with Alexandra J. King Pile, BA international studies '07, who is currently working as a diplomat for the United States Department of State. Read on to learn about the challenges and opportunities of her role, and how her time at Drexel prepared her for this path.
Bringing History to New Audiences
Senior global studies major Emma Hirt spent the spring and summer as a Programs Assistant Co-op at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, where she used social media to introduce the organization's work to a younger audience—and went viral in the process.
Spanish Course Brings Latin American Activism to Campus With “Drexel Cartonera: Memorias al Carton”
One might expect a written exam to wrap up their class for the quarter. But students in Celeste Dolores Mann’s Spanish 410 course—Performing Spanish: Proficiency Through the Arts—had to think outside the box for their final. Rather, they had to use the box, sourcing cardboard for their projects. Because her course was focused on the performing arts in Latin America and Spain, and the coursework was writing-intensive, Mann decided a creative final project was the way to go.
The flexible format of a Global Studies degree encourages majors to tailor their education to fit their interests by choosing from four concentrations built around interdisciplinary plans of study. Rather than focusing on a single field, such as politics or health, students are immersed in courses from across the university. Global Studies scholars become better equipped to address world issues and understand their impact on local and national concerns by participating in community-based learning, intensive study abroad and co-op.
Global Justice and Human Rights
The Global Justice and Human Rights concentration is ideal for students interested in careers related to defense; local, state, national and international government affairs; intelligence; law; social justice and human rights. Lawyers, international aid workers, human rights advocates, experts in non-violent conflict resolutions, and related professions require the language skills, regional specialization and social science foundation provided by this concentration. Students explore current global issues such as the growth of international nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), international peacekeeping, and the interplay of global security and justice.
The Global Justice and Human Rights concentration also links technology and science to human rights and social justice, considering such problems as access to medicine and clean water. Students continue their investigation into human rights and international relations issues in co-operative education and study abroad experiences. Our Costa Rica program, for example, offers exciting options that dovetail well with this Global Studies concentration.
Potential careers include:
- International aid
- Human rights advocacy
- Conflict resolution
- Global welfare
- International nongovernmental organizations (NGOs)
- International law
Global Business, Economics and Development
The Global Business, Economics and Development concentration is for students interested in careers linked to the global economy, where regional knowledge, intercultural competency, and writing and language skills are highly valued. Along with a grounding in basic business and economics, students gain the social, political and historical knowledge to better understand international business and global economic systems trends. This concentration also introduces students to the challenges of transitional economies and third world development programs, calling attention to the ethical and cultural issues facing international agencies.
Unlike traditional business school programs, this concentration offers a liberal arts focus for careers in multinational companies, development agencies, government and international organizations. It encourages students to take advanced language courses specifically designed for international business, and to study abroad in the language of their specialty area.
Potential careers include:
- Global economy
- International business
- Multinational companies
- Development agencies
- Government organizations
Global Health and Sustainability
The Global Health and Sustainability concentration combines a solid social science and humanities education with a grounding in the scientific and technical aspects of global development. Students study issues such as environmental science, international public health, development and sustainability. Courses in sociology, politics, history, languages, and other fields prepare students to be global citizens with knowledge of diverse cultures and global governance.
Students in this environmental sustainability and global health concentration will have a heightened awareness of the global challenges posed by environmental change, population growth and poverty. Drexel offers various study abroad opportunities for hands-on experience in global development work, as well as heightened language skills in sustainability and international relations contexts.
Potential careers include:
- Economic development
- Social service agencies like the UN
- Public health
- Environmental sustainability
- International social work
- Graduate studies
Global Media, Arts and Cultures
The Global Media, Arts and Cultures concentration allows students to develop a major around cultural and language studies, emphasizing the cultural life associated with modern languages and their regions. This provides a broad understanding of the ways in which language intersects with media and all aspects of a region’s cultural and artistic life. Global studies majors take courses in diverse fields such as media studies, comparative literature, art history and languages to create a customized course of study.
This global cultural studies concentration helps build well-rounded, culturally literate and deep-thinking students with a broad appreciation of social and artistic trends. Students of this global arts studies program will be well prepared for graduate studies and careers that consider educational and cultural institutions from an international studies perspective.
Potential careers include:
- Graduate studies in culture, media and modern languages
- Interpretation and translation
- International organizations
- International education
- Cultural institutions
Earn your advanced degree sooner — Global Studies majors can choose from four accelerated degree programs that allow academically qualified students to earn a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree concurrently.
Depending on the degree, eligible undergraduate students can be admitted to an accelerated program in one of two ways: as an incoming freshman, or as a current student — after completing a minimum of 90 credits, but no more than 120 credits. Visit Drexel University's Accelerated Degree Terms and Conditions to learn more.
Language or Regional Studies Minors — Required
Global Studies majors gain intercultural competence and skills when they complete a language minor or a regional studies minor in one of the approved languages offered through Drexel’s Modern Languages Program. The Global Studies major language requirement may be satisfied by taking any one of the three language minors listed below, or, one of the three regional studies minors which combine languages and content courses. Global Studies minors must complete at least one 200-level course.
Regional Studies Minors
Religious Studies Minor
Drexel University’s minor in Religious Studies is designed to provide an interdisciplinary approach to the study of religions across time and place. Students learn about religions from a global perspective — examining world religions, folk religions and alternative religions — and reflect on the search for meaning in the varied perspectives present in belief systems. The Religious Studies minor reflects the scholarship of faculty across the humanities and social science departments in the College of Arts and Sciences, equipping students with discrete yet overlapping disciplinary models.
Coursework and Certificates — Optional
Global Studies majors have the opportunity to greatly enhance and extend their knowledge with optional coursework and certificates offered by the Drexel Modern Languages Program:
Language Proficiency Certificates
Spanish for Health Professionals Certificate
The Spanish for Health Professionals certificate prepares students who are already enrolled at Drexel to engage Spanish-speaking populations in the field of healthcare. This in-demand advantage is designed to teach health professions students —College of Nursing and Health Professions, Public Health and Pre-Med— to communicate confidently in Spanish with their patients and to deliver culturally competent care.