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Social Justice

Major Requirements

The social justice program provides students at Merrimack College with the chance to turn their passion for change, human rights and a more just world into a career.

Meet Your Major

The social justice major is intended for students interested in creating a more just and equitable world.

  • You will focus on how social, political and economic structures, systems and institutions help or hurt people’s abilities to meet their basic needs.
  • You will learn how to protect and enhance the needs, dignity and rights of people, the environment and animals.
  • You will be exposed to questions of justice, discrimination, institutionalized violence, power and oppression, and learn how to respond to them.

Hands-On Learning

Outside the classroom, you’ll have the opportunity to participate in community-based or nongovernmental organization internships focusing on areas like economic disparity and at-risk youth. You can also get involved in Social Justice Week, an on-campus initiative that addresses inequality issues through high-profile speaker events and campus-wide discussions.  

Career Options

Upon successful completion of the social justice program, you’ll be well equipped to pursue a career in a community organization, university, research institute, consulting firm, corporation or government agency. You may also be interested in domestic and international nongovernmental organizations, including community and environmental organizations, human rights organizations, the United Nations and international development organizations.

Our graduates are also employable as international environmental journalists, writers, media producers and organizers.

What You’ll Take

This bachelor’s degree program requires a minimum of 124 credits. As part of the overall 124 credit minimum, the requirements for the major in social justice include a minimum of 34 credits in the major and nine courses and an internship. Students are also required to engage and actively participate in events organized by the program, such as field trips, social justice events (Social Justice Week/Month), documentaries and lectures.

Concentrations

Choosing a concentration is required in our program. You will work together with your adviser to develop an area of concentration based on your interests. You may choose your own concentration or consider some of the following sample concentrations:

  • Global Justice and Human Rights
  • Green Cultural Studies
  • Religion and Social Justice
  • Social Change

Required Courses 

All Social Justice majors must take the following three courses:

SOJ 1000

Introduction to Social Justice (Theory and Practice)

Capstone

Social Justice Capstone (taken senior year)

Internship

Internship 
(An approved credit or non-credit internship completed before the final semester of senior year, locally or abroad)

Elective Requirements

Students must select seven courses from the courses approved for the Social Justice major, with at least one course from each of the following four areas:

  • Global Justice
  • Ethics and Theory
  • Legal, Political or Economic Perspectives
  • Historical or Cultural Perspectives

A minimum of two of these seven courses must be at the 3000 level or above. A maximum of five of these seven courses or 20 credits (whichever is greater) may be taken in one department.

The courses approved for each of the four areas are:

Global Justice

BIO 3039

Global Field Studies Program Courses

ECO 3303

Economic Development

ECO 3306

International Economics

ENG 3770

Caribbean Women Writers

ENG 3800

Post Colonial Literature

HSC 3103

Global Public Health

PHL 2500

Theories of Justice

PHL 3010

Human Rights: Theory and Practice

PHL 3030

Global Justice

POL 2510

International Politics

POL 3521

Latin American Politics

POL 3530

Democracy, Development & Violence

POL 3531

Politics of Developing Nations

RTS 2990

Women in Islam

RTS 3850

War & Peace 

 SPA 3060

Actualidad Latinoamericana

SPA 4050 

Literature(s)/Culture(s) of Resistance

WGS 3110       

Global Women’s Issues: Gender, Activism, and Social Justice

WGS 3830

Gender and Global Health

Ethics and Theory

PHL 2040 

Introduction to Political Philosophy

PHL 2070

Environmental Ethics

PHL 2500

Theories of Justice

PHL 2100

Women, Ethics and Society

PHL 3010

Human Rights: Theory and Practice

PHL 3030

Global Justice

RTS 2800

Social Ethics

RTS 2950

Ethics in the Abrahamic Traditions

WGS 3000 

Thinking Green: Environmental Justice, Gender, and Animal Rights

WGS 3100

Feminist Theory

WGS 3110          

Global Women’s Issues: Gender, Activism, and Social Justice

Legal, Political or Economic Perspectives on Social Justice

CRM 2500 

The Death Penalty

CRM 3380W

Race, Class, Crime

CRM 3900

Incarceration

ECO 1225

Economics of Gender

ECO 3303

Economic Development

ECO 3304 

Economics of Education

ECO 3305

Ecological Economics

ECO 3307 

Labor Economics

ECO 3311

Public Finance

ECO 3315

Urban and Regional Economics

EDU 2130

Diversity, Social Justice, and Ethics

MGT 3320

Employment Law and Labor Relations

HIS 2340

Survey of Latin American History

HIS 3439            

Slavery and Race in the Early Modern Atlantic World 1400-1800

PHL 2040

Introduction to Political Philosophy

PHL 3010

Human Rights: Theory and Practice

PHL 3020 

Philosophy of Law

POL 2510

International Politics

POL 3152 

Civil Liberties and Civil Rights

POL 3161 

The Politics of Immigration and Human Movement

POL 3521

Latin American Politics

POL 3530

Democracy, Development & Violence

RTS 3850

War and Peace: Religious Perspectives

RTS 3900 

Women’s Voices in the Holocaust

SOC 3150

Social Movements

SOC 3650

Sociology of Immigration

WGS 3300 

US Women’s History

WGS 3710

Gender and the Law

WGS 3720 

Gender, Immigration and the Law

Historical or Cultural Perspectives on Social Justice
BIO 2009  Environmental Science
BIO 3090-99 Global Field Studies Program Courses
COM 3201 Gender and Communication
COM 3231 Intercultural Communications
CRM 1200/
ENG 1200
Inequality and Justice in Life and Literature
CRM 3380W Race, Class and Crime
CRM 3500  Domestic Violence 
CRM 2300 Hate Crimes
ECO 3309 Marxian Economics
ECO 3312 History of Economic Thought
ENG 3770 Caribbean Women Writers
ENG 3800 Post Colonial Literature
ENG 3810 American Literature by Women of Color
ENG 3830 American Indian Renaissance
ENG 3850  Twentieth Century Caribbean Writers
ENG 3870  Literature of the Harlem Renaissance
FAA 2505              Politics of Performance: Theatre, Government and Social Change
FAA 3171/
POL 3171
Music and Politics
HIS 2340  Survey of Latin American History
HIS 3439  Slavery and Race in the Early Modern Atlantic World 1400-1800
HSC 3103  Global Public Health
ITA 2530  Italian Women Writers
ITA 2550 Italian-Americans and Film
ITA 2560W The Italian Southern Question in Literature and Film
PHL 3010 Human Rights: Theory and Practice
POL 3521 Latin American Politics
PSY 3250 Cultural Psychology
RTS 2900 Holocaust
RTS 2950 Ethics in the Abrahamic Traditions
RTS 2990 Women in Islam
RTS 3030  Humans, Earth and the Sacred: Religion & the Environment
RTS 3750 Jews and Christians: Conflicts and Reconciliations
RTS 3800 Ethical Witnesses: Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton
RTS 3850 War & Peace: Religious Perspectives
RTS 3900  Women’s Voices in the Holocaust
SOC 3600 Sociology of Health
SPA 3060  Actualidad Latinoamericana
SPA 3200 Intro to Advanced Studies
SPA 3310  Latinos in the US: Culture and Service Learning
SPA 3610 Race, Literature and Culture
SPA 3620  Gender, Literature and Culture
SPA 3630 Studies of Popular Culture of Latin America/Spain
SPA 4050 Literature(s) /Culture(s) of Resistance
WGS 2010 Introduction to Ethnic Studies
WGS 2200 Gender and Social Movements
WGS 2260 Southwestern Women Writers and Artists
WGS 3110 Global Women’s Issues: Gender, Activism, and Social Justice
WGS 3250 Sex and Gender Studies
WGS 3360 Fieldwork in the Southwest
WGS 3420  Gender, Race, and the Media
WGS 3630 Changing Woman: Reality and Myth of Native American Women
WGS 3830 Gender and Global Health
Other Elective Options (not required)

BIO 2010W

Ecology

COM 3331

Communications and Nonprofit Organizing

EDU 3620

Cultural Diversity in Schools

ESS 1050

Environmental Studies Gateway

SOC 2050

Social Work

WRT 2020W

Writing for Social Change

 

More Info 

Luis Sáenz de Viguera Erkiaga
Director, Social Justice
Associate Professor, World Languages and Cultures

978-837-3471
saenzdevigul@merrimack.edu