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Pacific Islands Studies


Program Description

The Pacific Islands Studies (PI Studies) Interdisciplinary Certificate provides students with training in the field of Pacific Islands Studies that can be intergraded with their major. The course of study is designed to facilitate integrative learning, providing students with opportunities to make connections between their major and the PI Studies Certificate and to think critically and reflexively about complex problems and their contexts.  The Certificate also provides students with opportunities to think globally, as the required courses offer broad historical and contemporary knowledge about the Indigenous Pacific and the global Pacific Islander diaspora.  Overall, the goal is for students to grasp a more nuanced understanding of historical and contemporary concerns in Oceania as they relate to diasporic issues locally.

Students pursuing a PI Studies Certificate will complete 6 courses/18 credits. The first two required courses provide students with foundational knowledge about the Indigenous Pacific and the history and forces that contribute to migration and contemporary diasporic conditions. The third course, the Signature Experience, requires students nearing the end of their college experience to create a project that integrates what they have learned in the PI Studies Certificate with what they have learned in their major. Students will round out their Certificate with three additional elective courses that offer disciplinary-specific approaches to Pacific Islands Studies in areas like Ethnic Studies, history, Samoan, and anthropology.

Academic and Career Opportunities

Enrich your academic pursuits by connecting with the Pacific Islander community at the U! Apply for one of our awesome academic year long student opportunities through the PI Studies Initiative: the Pasifika Ambassador program, the Pasifika Research Scholar program, or the Tongan Field School study abroad. All these opportunities fulfill requirements towards the Certificate while connecting with Pacific Islander professors, community leaders, advisors, and more!

Graduates with the Pacific Islands Studies Certificate work in every career field – business, education, health, nonprofit, and social services.


Last Updated: 4/23/21