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College of Arts and Sciences

Department of Pan-African Studies

Oscar Ritchie Hall
Tel: 330-672-2300
Fax: 330-672-4837


The Bachelor of Arts in Pan-African Studies consists of three concentrations: Disapora Studies, Arts, Literature and Culture and Pan-African Studies.

Diaspora Studies, within the Bachelor of Arts in Pan-African Studies, focuses on the history, culture and politics of people of African descent in Africa, the United States, the Caribbean, South America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Using an interdisciplinary and comparative approach, this concentration prepares students to function in a diverse, global and multicultural environment, working in areas such as education, law, public service, social work, research,public health, international studies, political science, justice studies, foreign service, business and community development.

Arts, Literature and Culture, within the Bachelor of Arts in Pan-African Studies, focuses on the study of people of African descent in Africa, the Americas, the Caribbean, Europe, Asia and the Middle East through the study of literature, arts and culture. With some emphasis on popular as well as non-literary cultural expressions, this concentration provides insights into the challenges black communities face while encouraging the study of less commonly taught languages such as Kiswahili. This program also provides a good foundation for those interested in continuing to graduate school in ethnic studies, are, education, comparative literature and global and world studies.

Pan-African Studies focuses on African descendants’ global, cultural and historical experiences. It examines ways in which continental African and African diasporic communities and individuals have developed political, creative and coordinated strategies for survival and development in spite of racism, socio-economic challenges and colonialism. In addition to preparing students to work in areas such as education, international affairs, law, public service, social work, research, foreign service, business and community development, this program provides a good foundation for those interested in graduate studies.


Career Opportunities

The Pan-African Studies program prepares students to work effectively in a number of employment areas. Some examples are teaching, business, public administration/urban studies, broadcasting, the arts, law, nutrition, social work, journalism, public health, architecture and creative writing. Besides preparing students for employment, the major provides a foundation for graduate students in African and African-American Studies. When coupled with another major or minor (such as history, political science, business, nursing, fashion merchandising), a major in Pan-African Studies also supports advanced training in social sciences, humanities and professions such as psychology, criminal justice and nursing, that require sensitivity training or skills relative to interracial or intercultural understanding and conflict management.

Admission Requirements

General Admissions for New Freshmen: Students most likely to be admitted and succeed at the Kent Campus are those who have graduated with at least 16 units of the recommended college preparatory curriculum in high school, who have achieved a cumulative high school grade point average of 2.5 or higher (on a 4.0 scale), and whose composite ACT score is 21 or better (980 combined critical reading and math SAT score). For more information on admissions, visit the admissions website for new freshmen.

General Admissions for Transfer Students: Generally, a transfer applicant who has taken 12 or more semester hours with a college cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 on a 4.0 scale may be admitted. An applicant who has taken fewer than 12 semester hours will be evaluated on both collegiate and high school records. For more information on admissions, visit the admissions website for transfer students.

Graduation Requirements

Minimum 121 total credit hours  and  42 upper-division hours for graduation. Minimum 2.000 GPA overall and 2.000 GPA in major required for graduation.

Program Learning Outcomes

Graduates of this program will be able to:

1. Have an advanced understanding of the core historical experiences in Africa and/or the African Diaspora.

2. Interact with surrounding communities and be informed an engaged global citizens.

3. Relate current social issues facing the Pan-African world with global historical events.

4. Read, analyze and critically articulate the contemporary socio-economic, political and cultural issues facing people of African descent.

Study Abroad/Away Opportunities

University of Ghana, University of Cape Coast, West African Research Center Senegal

Student Organizations

Black United Students (BUS); College Summit; Harambee; Kent African Student Association (KASA); KSU National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Focus on the Future, Advocates of Cultural and Knowledge (ACK)