Our courses give students the theoretical, methodological, and research skills necessary to seek answers to the questions that matter today. We help students develop nuanced responses that are attuned to the intersections of race, class, gender, sexual orientation, ability, religious affiliation, time period, and geographic location. The department’s emphasis on historiography—studying the existing histories of a subject—is especially unique in undergraduate curricula. We teach students how to analyze a range of primary sources—myths, archeology, architecture, novels, poetry, paintings, photographs, diary entries, census data, treaties, and cartoons—for audience, message, and bias. Studying history prepares students to navigate a complex world.
Award-winning faculty teach courses in medieval and modern European, ancient Mediterranean, and U.S., Asian, Latin American, Caribbean, African, and Middle Eastern history. Women and gender history, global history, and the history of the African diaspora are some of the departmental strengths. Members of the department have been awarded Fulbrights and other prestigious fellowships to support their research, and they bring this research acumen to the research seminars and independent studies they direct.
History majors and alumni have been awarded competitive research fellowships to pursue independent research at local and national archives. Each year our students present their original research at the Phi Alpha Theta Northwest Regional Conference.
Our faculty cultivate relationships with local organizations such as the Seattle Art Museum, Northwest African American Museum, the Central District Forum for Arts & Ideas, Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute, Seattle International Film Festival, Northwest Film Forum, and the Seattle Public Library to connect what is learned in the history classroom with the wider Seattle community. Current students have pursued internships with local and international organizations, such as the Seattle Holocaust Center for Humanity, the Seattle branch of the ACLU, Starbucks, and the City of Seattle.
A history degree signals an independent thinker. Our graduates have the critical thinking, analysis, and writing skills necessary to excel in the workplace and the wider world. Our program’s emphasis on methodology and historiography prepares students for continued academic and professional success, including in the tech world. Many graduates have gone on to successful careers as teachers, lawyers, civil servants, museum curators, professors, and researchers.
I originally hail from Sammamish, WA. In my studies, I am especially interested in the development of ideologies and their impact on political and cultural movements. For my final research paper of the year, I am investigating the development of nationalist and socialist identities in 20th century Vietnam, with a particular focus on connections with emerging international socialism. Outside of classes, I am a captain on SU's cross country and track teams, and enjoy reading, listening to music, and political activism. Following graduation, I plan to pursue a certificate in Computer Science at SU.
Combining her interests in history and Spanish language in her academic research into Latin American history, and through her participation in the Latin American Studies Program in Puebla, Mexico in 2018, her research includes themes relating to leftist organizing amidst United States interventionism in 20th century Latin America. Her senior research project examined primary sources surrounding the 1928 massacre of striking banana workers in Colombia, and analyzed the influence of U.S. economic investment. She is continuing along these themes in her research into to the Tupamaro resistance movement that took place in Uruguay in the 60s-70s, as well as exploring how it contributed to the landscape of Latin American resistance movements.
Seattle U senior Honors student Serena Oduro is a finalist for both a Rhodes Scholarship and a Marshall Scholarship, among the most prestigious national fellowships. Serena will graduate from Seattle University in 2020 as a Sullivan Scholar with a major in History and minors in Business Administration, Chinese and Philosophy. This highly-accomplished student is the university's first Rhodes finalist since 2005.
Honors: Donovan Award given to HIST Major with the highest GPA Post-grad plans: I will be entering a service year with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps working as a youth minister. My ultimate career goal is to become a research librarian at an academic institution.
Honors: Donovan Award given to HIST Major with the highest GPA Tentative post-graduation plans- I am continuing to take Arabic courses to further develop my Arabic proficiency, and I am applying to several history-related internships to explore options for future studies or employment.
Honors: Donovan Award given to HIST Major with the highest GPA Madsen Leadership and Public Service Award. As the president of Phi Alpha Theta (History Honors Club), Falen helped organize activities such as a senior picnic and a game of Jeopardy and also designed a History Department t-shirt. In addition, as the department’s student assistant she designed eye-catching posters for events and mentored students. Tentative post-graduation plans: Falen is staying in Seattle next year to work and continue research on some papers she would like to publish.
Honors: Donovan Award given to HIST Major with the highest GPA Tentative post-graduation plans: Accepted into the Master's in Teaching Program at SU College of Education
Honors: Madsen Leadership and Public Service Award Isabel helped run the regional World History Association conference and has been History Department’s Student Executive Council rep and a digital intern. Tentative Post-graduation Plan: I'm interested in archival work and after graduation I am planning on going to graduate school in Library Sciences with an archival focus.
By Dr. Hazel Hahn. During this period of the Coronavirus pandemic, I have been staying with my parents in Old Tappan, New Jersey, working really remotely, 2,900 miles away from Seattle. My parents have been living in this area for the last forty years, whereas after high school I have been mostly away and visiting several times a year.
Apr 29, 2020
By Dr. Henry Kamerling. As Election Night November 5th came and went, most of the focus was on big Democratic and progressive victories on the east coast. Out here on the west coast, however, there were a few key local races that have gone largely unnoticed and/or undiscussed.
Nov 13, 2019
An active group of Seattle U students participate the national history honor society, including a highly popular film series, coffeehouse discussions, a brown-bag lunch seminar, and student- led panel discussions. Recent SU history students have won national awards for research papers and conference presentations, and received Phi Alpha Theta graduate student fellowships. Contact Dr. Tom Taylor by email.
Majors can earn course credits, under professional supervision, at public history agencies in the Seattle area, including museums, historical societies, archives, and more. Interns often find the experience helps them understand history from a perspective different from that gained in the classroom. For some, the internship has led to employment in the field. Contact Dr. Henry Kameriling by email.