Department of History
915 Volunteer Blvd.
6th Floor Dunford Hall
Knoxville, TN 37996-4065
Welcome undergraduates. A major in history prepares you for careers in teaching, law, museum work, media, public relations, governmental and non-governmental organizations, publishing, community affairs, and business, among other fields.
But beyond career interests, the study of history prepares you to be a citizen of the world, someone in charge of his or her own reasoning. History provides you with a set of stories and images about the development of your own culture and the cultures of various world societies. As a history major, you will learn to be articulate (orally and in writing) and to develop critical thinking skills that can be applied to a wide range of problems. Beyond all that, history is fun, intriguing, compelling. It shows you the meanings and the interpretations beyond “the facts,” whether you are analyzing the social effects of the Black Plague, the war memories of the American soldier, revolutionary cartoons in Egypt, or gender relations in China.
Why Major in History? Student Perspectives
Each year the history department honors its most accomplished majors. The faculty also awards one student the honor of being named Outstanding Graduating Senior, and that student gives a talk at our History Honors Banquet at the end of the year.
We asked two of those students to share their remarks. They offer compelling, insightful, and differing views on what becoming a history major meant to them, including how it affected their time at UT, and their plans for the future. Please take a moment to read them. We hope you will be delighted, surprised, and inspired by what they have to say.