History and Political Science

Studying history and political science are not for the passive observer. Simply taking a text, artifact, or statistic at face value can only get you so far. To get the most out of history — out of life — you have to critically engage with what you are studying. At Huntington University, we can teach you to carefully discern, deconstruct, and dialogue with what you learn.

If you do this, you will find that what you are learning about the past is immediately relevant to the world going on outside your door. Then you are ready to engage with and make your own mark on the world.

Study the past. Change the future.  

Degree Programs

Bachelor of Arts Degree in History

Gather evidence, engage with texts and artifacts, and draw connections between the past, the present, and the future in courses with an American, European, and/or Non-Western focus.

Take courses like

  • African American History
  • American Religious History
  • Historical Method
  • History of the United States 1-2
  • Medieval Europe
  • Public Policy
  • The British Empire


Pursue a career in

  • Public records, archives, or museums
  • Strategic communication
  • Banking, economics, or finance
  • Ministry or missions

Combine history or political science with courses in philosophy and the social sciences to prepare for law school.

Take courses like

  • Argumentation and Persuasion
  • Business Law
  • Criminology
  • Ethics
  • Introduction to Law
  • Marriage and the Family
  • Media Law
  • Public Policy
  • Social Welfare Institutions
Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science

Develop crucial analytical skills and knowledge of government that will make you an excellent agent in the political world.

Take courses like

  • America and Vietnam
  • American Environmental History
  • American Political Institutions
  • Art and Archeology in Angkor
  • Cambodia: Revolution and Genocide
  • Classics of Political Thought
  • Development and Sustainability
  • Ethics
  • European Nation-States Conflict

Pursue a career in

  • Law or politics
  • Government administration
  • Business or entrepreneurship
Bachelor of Arts Degree in International & Development Studies

Critically consider the world beyond your own experience in meaningful ways.

Take courses like


  • Contextualization
  • Cultural Anthropology
  • Environmental Resources
  • Human Development
  • Intercultural Communication
  • Population Studies
  • Principles of Macroeconomics
  • Principles of Sociology
  • Religions of the World

Pursue a career in

  • Government
  • Ministry or missions
  • Humanitarian organizations
Bachelor of Science Degree in History Education

Help new generations encounter history in meaningful ways and shape the future. As a history education major, you will receive rigorous training in history while gaining comprehensive experience in a series of courses, field experiences, and classroom experiences.

You will

  • Learn skills in hands-on practical experiences every semester
  • Complete a three-week full-day practicum as well as a number of other observation and participation hours in the actual classroom before you ever begin student teaching
  • Gain exposure to different grade levels and styles of teaching and learning



The archaeology minor offers students a sampling of courses in the study of archaeology and allied fields such as anthropology, art, Bible and religion, film, and history. When paired with a major such as history, this minor offers a solid foundation for students to continue their education in archaeology and related fields. 


If you want to make a difference in the future, study the past. Approach your education with this mindset, and your career has the potential to be meteoric. By learning both content and process, students with a history minor are encouraged to become problem solvers.

The HU history program places a strong emphasis on three things:

  • Studying history as a means of improving your cultural literacy
  • Striving to understand your own worldview and that of others
  • Acquiring a mastery of critical historical methodology — that is, understanding how historians work
Legal Studies

Huntington University graduates are competitive contenders for admission into law school. Alums have attended such notable grad schools as Notre Dame, IU Bloomington, and Marquette. With a minor in legal studies, you are prepared for a smooth transition to law school or a career in the legal profession. This minor supplements your major by giving you increased understanding of the law and the American legal system.

Museum Studies

Museum studies (sometimes called museology) offers you the opportunity to study a unique blend of history and art courses so you are well prepared to enter the museum field. To complete this minor, students must participate in internship experiences in one of three local museums or pursue an internship at the museum of their choice.

A background in museum studies opens doors to a career in history-based museums, such as the Great Lakes Museum of Military History, the History Center, the Indiana Medical History Museum, or the Indiana State Police Museum. It also enables you to pursue a career in art museums like the Indianapolis Museum of Art or the Fort Wayne Museum of Art. 

Political Science

A minor in political science will add perspective and value to your major by helping you develop crucial analytical skills and knowledge of government that will make you an excellent agent in the political world.

Refugee Studies

Refugee studies examines the political and legal status of displaced people and groups through topics such as human rights, political advocacy, ethnic identity, religious and social conflict, migration, and asylum policies. 

This multidisciplinary minor combines courses in political science, development studies, international relations, human geography, peace studies, and sociology to form a wide knowledge base that enhances opportunities for students who have an interest in humanitarian and societal issues. 

HU’s refugee studies minor is one of few programs like this in the United States. Though the topics covered by this minor are becoming part of a global conversation, refugee studies programs have, until recently, been limited to the United Kingdom and Australia.

Reacting to the Past

When students think of history class, they often picture a professor lecturing to desks pointed toward the board. This isn’t the case in an HU history class. In courses with the Reacting to the Past style of teaching, you will role play moments in history to more fully understand the motivations, circumstances, and actions of people who lived those moments. From revolutions to parliament, you will have the opportunity to see how real choices make an impact on the course of history.

In the last 15 years, department faculty have published over 40 books, articles, and more.
Students have voted a department faculty member Professor of the Year seven times.
Through role playing games that make history come alive, students will likely portray at least six historical characters.
Faculty have asked nine students to assist them with research projects as contributors or editors in the last five years.

Learning Opportunities

Academic Awards

The S. G. Whittle Johnston Memorial Award in History

The S.G. Whittle Johnston Memorial Award in History has been an annual academic award since 2003. It was established by a 1989 Huntington University history alumna to honor the memory of Dr. S.G. Whittle Johnston, professor of international relations at the University of Virginia and the donor's mentor, graduate advisor, and personal friend. By funding this award, the donor wishes to encourage upper-level history students in their study of history. The award is given to the junior or senior history major who submits the most outstanding work of original scholarship as decided by department faculty. The winner receives a plaque and a significant cash award.


The Ron Frank Memorial Endowment in History

The Frank Fund was established in 1973 to honor the memory of Ron Frank, an HU history major who passed away during the spring semester of his senior year. Donors desire to provide financial assistance to history majors while also memorializing Ron Frank. The endowment funds three awards:

  • The Ron Frank History Travel Award provides up to $500 per student for costs associated with attendance and participation at scholarly meetings. Students who are interested in attending a scholarly conference or convention are invited to apply for these awards in advance of the event.
  • The Jack P. Barlow, Sr., History Book Prize provides $200 worth of books to the outstanding student(s) in the department's senior seminar classes.
  • The Ron Frank Memorial Award for Outstanding Scholarship in History is awarded to graduating history majors who graduate summa cum laude (cumulative GPA of 3.85 or higher). The honor consists of a plaque and a cash award.
Centre for Non-Western Studies

Formed in 2009, the Centre for Non-Western Studies aims to increase student knowledge and understanding of the world outside of the United States. The Centre combines, but is not limited to, the fields of Bible and religion, business, English, history and political science, ministry and missions, TESOL, social work, and sociology.

Conference on Faith and History

The Conference on Faith & History is a community of scholars exploring the relationship between Christian faith and history. This biennial event is regularly attended by HU history and political science students and faculty. Not only do students attend this event, but many present papers. In that same vein, faculty don't simply attend this event; they chair panels and participate as commentators. 


Eunomia (the Greek word for “good order” or “governance according to good laws”) is Huntington University’s student pre-law organization. The group consists of students interested in the legal profession, law enforcement, criminal justice, public affairs, contemporary politics, human rights, conflict resolution, ethics, and public policy.

History Laboratory

The Department of History and Political Science consistently showcases its dedication to its students. One of the more recent examples of this is the addition of the History Laboratory. Located next to the history and political science faculty offices, this space is part meeting space, part study lounge, part library. With a trove of donated history literature at their disposal, students are able to gain a sense of confidence and comfort with the research.

HU Development and Sustainability Blog

The HU Development & Sustainability blog takes its name from the introductory course in the international and development studies program, “Development and Sustainability.” This blog is designed to keep readers up to date on program news as well as sustainability and placemaking initiatives on campus and through HU faculty and students around the world.

Off-Campus Opportunities

Complete local or national internships with judges, legislatures, political campaigns, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and more. Study abroad in Washington, D.C., Costa Rica, England, China, Russia,
or Egypt.


Teaching is our faculty’s first priority, but they also manage to publish incredible academic work. Besides completing personal research projects, faculty often ask students to serve as co-editors or collaborators on research and publications. 

Dr. Jeff Webb, Professor of History

“Advanced thinking in the fields of history, political science, and international & development studies favors the long game, and there are intellectual and spiritual benefits for those who are willing to work at it through reading and reflection.”

Emily VanderBent, History (2019)

“I had so many beautiful opportunities, from internships to leadership positions to independent studies, that truly helped shape the person I am today. I got to try new things and have opportunities I never could have imagined.”

Kurt Siegel, History Education (2018)

“Teaching history was a simple choice because the professors were so personable and friendly and obviously cared for the students; to add to that, history classes prepared students to read and think critically — a skill valued in any profession.”

Learn More

Brautigam Scholarship

To honor Dr. Brautigam for his commitment to academic excellence at the university, and for his impact on generations of HU alumni, the Brautigam Scholarship has been founded. If you are interested in helping to establish this scholarship to impact history majors for years to come, please consider making a contribution.

Make a Contribution

Have you heard these myths

Myth 1: I’ll struggle to find a job.

Did you know that jobs for archivists, curators, and museum workers are predicted to increase 19% (much faster than average) from 2020-2030?1 These are just a few of the jobs open to history and political science graduates, but they exemplify our need for professionals who know how to analyze, read, write, and critically engage well. You can pick up job-specific skills on the job, but what you learn as a history major never truly goes out of style. Our graduates have gone on to be lawyers, bankers, political advisors, journalists, teachers, professors, marketers…the list is varied, long, and impressive.

1Occupational Outlook Handbook, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2022

Myth 2: I’ll struggle to keep up.

Studying history, political science, or international development studies requires dedication and rigor that might seem daunting, and the many possibilities open to you after graduation might feel unattainable. Our goal is to help you see that you are capable of more than you think you are! Together, we will dissect, debate, and dialogue about ways you can grow and develop through your college career to be ready for whatever comes next. This is your space to grow and develop — and you will, if you put in the work.


The Department of History and Political Science is more than a collection of scholars interested in discussing past events. We are a family of thinkers, debaters, and enthusiasts who encourage each other to grow and strengthen our skills. Stay up to date on department happenings by following us on Facebook!