Brief Program Summary: Ball State University’s minor in African-American Studies provides
students a better understanding of the nation as a whole and African-Americans’ contribution to
it. Students explore how race, power, and resistance have shaped American society more
broadly. Students also gain a meaningful and informed sense of events like Ferguson and
Charlottesville, which swirl around the national consciousness and shape politics and culture
every day. In that sense, being an African-American Studies minor can make a student a more
informed citizen. This minor can also make a student a more marketable potential employee after
college. As studies from the “Wall Street Journal,” Monster.com, and others have shown,
employers want to hire people who are diversity-conscious. This is true across disciplines, from
the humanities to STEM fields. Employers want employees to be knowledgeable of contexts and
experiences outside of their own.
Success Metrics: African-American studies instills students with critical thinking skills, intellectual
dexterity, cultural competencies that will be valuable later in life, and historical and modern
contributions of African Americans to American life, culture, and politics.