Mission Statement

Justice Studies is committed to offering an interdisciplinary, intellectually challenging and vocationally relevant course of study for persons interested in academic or applied careers in justice studies at the community, national or global level.


To carry out this mission, Justice Studies seeks to:

  • Help students develop a comprehensive understanding of Justice Studies.
  • Examine and explain justice and injustice and their impact on individuals, communities, institutions and/or nations.
  • Understand human behavior and interactive systems with a focus on negotiation and conflict resolution in justice contexts.
  • Sharpen students' ability to think and reason critically, to practice sound methodological skills and to communicate effectively.
  • Prepare students to utilize and produce scholarship in the field of Justice Studies.

Justice Studies is an interdisciplinary area of inquiry that brings together insights from the social sciences and humanities to explore questions of justice. Through the rigorous empirical and normative analyses of justice and injustice it seeks to help students develop a personal definition of justice, a fuller understanding of the nature of the world in which they live, and identify careers and strategies for action.  Justice Studies values community and civic engagement, encourages students to actively participate in and contribute to their communities, and provides engagement opportunities and resources. Justice Studies is NOT a criminal justice program.

Justice Studies offers students a choice of three concentrations in the major, as well as a general Justice Studies major (starting during the 2021-2022 catalog year):

We encourage students to actively explore opportunities for community and civic engagement, internships, graduate study and careers; for more information, please see the Professional Opportunities tab on the website.


Justice Studies administers several interdisciplinary minors that are distinct from the major:

Criminal Justice is a cross disciplinary minor designed for students who are preparing for careers in law enforcement, corrections, judicial administration or other areas related to the study or management of crime. (Cannot be paired with the Justice Studies major)

Humanitarian Affairs provides students with a global perspective on major issues facing the human community today; students will acquire knowledge and skills that prepare them for careers in government or non-profit organizations that address humanitarian issues. 

Youth Justice is designed for students who are interested in working in the juvenile justice system or in other agencies serving adolescents. Students will become proficient in the latest research on the principles of adolescent development, will understand the impact of trauma and will become familiar with current best practices of preventing and responding to juvenile delinquency.

Social Justice Studies fosters educated and enlightened citizenship through a foundational curriculum designed for students who are engaged in social justice endeavors and/or preparing for careers and advanced professional or graduate work in relevant fields. (This cannot be paired with a Justice Studies major with a concentration in Social Justice; courses taken for the minor may not be used as electives for the major)

Back to Top