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Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences (AHSS)

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Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences


Liberal arts education is at the heart of the University of Denver. Our faculty, staff and students come together in a shared quest for knowledge of the human condition.

Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

Dean of AHSS

 FALL 2016

mcintoshWelcome to the divisions of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Denver.

This fall we welcome to campus more than 140 graduate students and 340 first year students who have declared a major in AHSS. Under the guidance of our accomplished faculty and staff, these students will join their AHSS peers and engage in academic projects as diverse as our 13 departments, two schools and multiple centers and institutes. They have come here to study areas ranging from studio art to sociology, religious studies to psychology or musicology to English.

It's also my pleasure to welcome 23 new AHSS faculty to the University who join 220+ returning faculty. Professors often use the summer to pursue research or creative endeavors. AHSS faculty figure among the best trained artists and scholars in the nation. Some professors work in the field, others in labs, studios, archives and libraries throughout the world. Their findings influence their syllabi, course assignments and out-of-class collaborations with students.

In fact, many professors will integrate their latest research into First-Year Seminar (FSEM) courses. FSEMS get started during a week-long orientation program called Discoveries Week during which students register for classes, meet their new roommates, tour the campus and take the light rail to nearby downtown Denver and more.

Professors select FSEM course topics based on their own scholarship and enthusiasm. They take care to work closely with the first-year students to hone the kinds of academic skills that prepare students for success in college, including writing, critical reading and thinking, discussion and debate.

There are roughly 90 FSEMs that students can choose from, and I'm proud that most are taught by AHSS faculty. The subjects include the psychology of video games, global hip-hop, the Bible and social justice, or even the boogeyman and other monsters as terrifying figures in literature and film. Some students will visit local museums to learn about Denver-area anthropology and archaeology, study the psychology of exercise and the mind-body connection or learn about Spanish explorers and how Colorado got its name.

This fall I encourage all students to visit the AHSS Student Study Suite (Sturm 201). The leaders on the AHSS Student Advisory Council advocated to the dean's office and architect's office about the need for a space like this. We successfully opened it last year. The suite is a place for students to casually study, attend workshops or just hang out. There are spontaneous distributions of free coffee, too!

Seriously, the workshops hosted by career services are important. I encourage all students to attend them so you can get grad school and career advice, find an alumni mentor, search for internships and more. Even outside of the classroom, we're here to help you succeed. In fact, we've recently hired a new director of alumni relations and a new student services and curriculum coordinator; these two positions will help students and alumni navigate life during and post-DU.

I invite prospective students, parents, alumni and friends to visit our impressive facilities explore our robust course offerings and meet the expert members of our academic community. Don't hesitate to contact the members of my office or me if you have any questions or comments.

Danny McIntosh, Dean