About the School

About the School

Welcome from the School Director

Jeffrey P. Beck, Ph.D.

Welcome to the School of Humanities. We are not a single place or department, but a group of extraordinary people teaching vital skills for careers and life after college. These people, our humanities faculty, teach courses in American studies, studio art, art history, communications, English, foreign languages, history, Jewish studies, philosophy, media and film studies, music, museum studies, philosophy, religious studies, theatre, women’s studies, and writing.

The skills we teach are central to your education at Penn State. Some of these abilities are fundamental to learning in college - the abilities to write clearly and persuasively, to read and understand complex texts, to listen and communicate effectively, to solve problems creatively, to connect domains of knowledge and to connect with one another. Other skills we teach are central to the careers we are training students to pursue, including skills in documentary film making, public relations strategies, museum, archival, and public heritage practices, journalistic and creative writing skills, teaching methods in English, history, American studies, humanities and the arts, and broadcasting and mass media production skills, just to name a few. After you learn these skills, you can begin internships that will give you practice in a professional setting as you network and plan your career. We also offer graduate programs at the master’s level, including communications, humanities, and American studies, and our nationally-recognized doctoral program in American studies, to advance knowledge and careers in higher education and beyond.

Please do look at our website, including notices of cultural events, lectures, musical and theatrical performances. Creativity, communications savvy, community engagement - you will find these qualities here, as you prepare for a rewarding career.

Jeffrey P. Beck, Ph.D.
Director, School of Humanities