History Major or Minor

The Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree or minor in History is for students who are interested in the origins of the world’s social, cultural, economic, religious and technological realities.

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What Historians Do

History is the world’s greatest storytelling process. Gathering evidence from all the societies, cultures and ideas that have ever existed, historians explore the relationships that connect our lives to the past. Through these relationships between past and present, historians uncover the meaning that shapes our world and the stories of who we are.

Students who want to explore meaning and uncover the vital relationship that condition the present will find a home in the history program. At Olivet, history majors have the opportunity to integrate a Christ-centered appreciation of the peoples and stories of the past with cutting edge current scholarship.

Curriculum Highlights

Our coursework grounds students in European, American and global fields of historical study while teaching the research and interpretive skills of the historian’s task. Examples of student research include:

  • Digitally curated museum exhibits
  • Student-built digital history websites
  • Original research papers based on primary source and archival material.

Providing the skills that allow students to process a diverse field of human-centered information from all times, peoples and places, the bachelor’s degree in history opens the door to 21st century careers or post-graduate study.

Where to Find Us

The History Program is located on the third floor of Burke, which was built in 1906 and one of the original buildings Olivet purchased from St. Viator College in 1940.

History and Political Science Department

Department Clubs

New ONU Phi Alpha Theta

Phi Alpha Theta

Phi Alpha Theta is a national honor society that recognizes outstanding academic achievement in the field of history. Students who meet the academic qualifications can participate in Phi Alpha Theta’s national events including presenting at conferences and publishing research. Olivet’s local chapter sponsors workshops that provide information for history students about careers and graduate school applications. Students also host a campus-wide book club once per semester. Phi Alpha Theta is a way for students to participate in the Department of History and Political Science’s commitment to academic excellence.

ONU History League

The History League

The History League is a place for anyone, no matter what major, who loves the past. This student-run club meets once a week for discussion, screening videos on historical subjects, or just hanging out to play games with fellow history lovers. The History League also sponsors the campus-wide Historical Beard Competition known as Footnote Your Face, and the club takes an annual trip to a major historical site in Illinois. History League is the place to be for everyone with a passion for the past, and one of the many ways the Department of History and Political Science connects students with the Olivet community.

Social & Academic Events

Phi Alpha Theta and the History League offer all kinds of opportunities for social and academic events every semester. Check out some images of past activities.

Image of Honors cohort
Aerial view of graduates entering Centennial Chapel
Two smiling graduates
Student on main campus wearing pink sweater and holding water bottle.

Where Your Future Begins

We Believe. You Belong Here. Discover why Olivet is a place where faith meets calling. Take the first step today.

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