B.A. in History


Program Description

History majors at Siena College experience history. We require it. Siena students conduct research in archives, record oral histories, intern at museums, travel to historic sites and work with active scholars. Our rigorous program empowers our graduates in business, law, government, education and public history in the U.S. and abroad.

Why study history?

History helps us understand the past so we can explain the present and gain insights into the future. History enables us to make sense of a complex world and provides us with a sense of identity. And history trains us to reason and weigh evidence, to consider multiple interpretations, and to forward our own ideas with vigor, precision, and confidence.

Why study history at Siena?

At Siena, your education isn’t confined to the classroom—it happens in museums and libraries. It happens at historic sites here and abroad. It happens in the real world, with plenty of real-world experience along the way. Here, you have immediate access to active scholars and professionals, historic documents, recordings, and artifacts. And you’ll be trained to discover—and make sense of—important historical resources.

Program Highlights

  • Small classes
  • Personalized advising
  • Tracks in American History, European History, Non-Western History and Social Studies Education
  • Students complete a “History Outside the Classroom” requirement through mini-internships, teaching or study abroad
  • Service-learning opportunities abound, from engaging with local refugee immigrant communities to assisting historic sites through original research
  • Certificate programs in Revolutionary Era Studies and Latin American/Caribbean Studies
  • Innovative capstone requirement noted by the American Historical Association has led to awards, published research and helped graduates get into graduate and law schools
  • Award-winning chapter of Phi Alpha Theta, the national history honor society
  • Active history club that sponsors trips and a “Day of Living History” on campus
  • Undergraduate opportunities to work as research assistants with active scholars
  • Internships where students enjoy hands-on experience in sites of local, regional and national importance
  • Summer Scholars work alongside active historians as assistants, gaining hands-on experience with artifacts, documents and pedagogical techniques
  • A foreign language requirement and frequently offered travel courses to destinations like Italy, the Netherlands and Russia

Requirements for the Major (39 credits)

  • HIST101 - Shaping of Contemporary World 3 credits


  • HIST190 - Honors: Contemp World History 3 credits


  • HIST110 - History Outside the Classroom 0 credits
  • HIST201 - West and World I 3 credits
  • HIST202 - West and World II 3 credits
  • HIST203 - American History I 3 credits
  • HIST204 - American History II 3 credits
    • HIST497 - Proseminar for Capstone 3 credits

The course normally is taken the semester preceding enrollment in HIST 499 in the senior year. It cannot be taken concurrently with HIST 499.

  • HIST499 - History Capstone 3 credits

6 credits in European history (HEUR)


6 credits in non-European/non-U.S. history (HNW)


6 credits in History electives

Auxiliary courses (6 credits)

Two semesters in the same foreign language
These languages include: French, Spanish, German, Latin, Russian, Greek, Italian or Arabic.
*American Sign Language does not fulfill this requirement.

Success Stats

  • 100% of students gain hands-on experience with history outside the classroom
  • 97% job or graduate school placement rate
  • 40% go on to earn a master’s doctorate or professional degree
  • One in three say a Siena connection led to their first or current job
  • 44% participate in internships

Employers of our Graduates and Student Internship Sites

  • Albany Institute of History and Art
  • Antietam National Battlefield
  • Apple
  • Autotask
  • Discovery Communications
  • Irish-American Heritage Museum
  • New York State Assembly
  • New York State Department of Labor
  • New York State Military Museum and Veteran’s Research Center
  • New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation
  • New York State Senate
  • Saratoga National Historical Park
  • Shaker Heritage Society
  • Syracuse City School District
  • U.S. Air Force
  • U.S. Department of Education
  • U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand
  • Walt Disney Co.
  • Wells Fargo

Job Titles of Recent Graduates

  • Analyst
  • Assignment Editor
  • Associate Director
  • Assistant District Attorney
  • Attorney
  • Branch Manager
  • Historic Site Interpreter
  • Legislative Assistant
  • Marketing Executive
  • Teacher
Last updated Jan 2018

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About the School

Siena College is more than a liberal arts college, it is a learning community that prepares students for a successful life filled with compassion and drive, service and responsibility. Here, we believ ... Read More

Siena College is more than a liberal arts college, it is a learning community that prepares students for a successful life filled with compassion and drive, service and responsibility. Here, we believe that making a good living and living a good life go hand in hand. And we prove, over and over again, that an education like the one you receive at Siena comes along once in a lifetime. Welcome! Read less