Religious studies scholars examine religions from the perspective of a religion’s followers, studying the similarities, differences, and core tenets of a belief system. If you want to gain a broader understanding of religions and their traditions, consider the Religious Studies program at the University of Utah. Courses of study include Jewish Studies, Coptic Studies, Western Christianity, Islam Studies, Mormon Studies, and Religion & Conflict. Through critical analysis and discussion of these faiths, students will learn how theology shapes individuals and communities across the globe. Regardless of emphasis area, the Religious Studies program consists of courses from 13 departments: English, History, Communication, Philosophy, Langauges & Literature, Political Science, Social Work, Sociology, Anthropology, Art & Art History, Theatre, Health Promotion & Education, and the Middle East Center. Within these fields, religious studies courses are divided into four areas: Text and Literature, Theory and Methodology, Art, Culture and Society, and World Religions. The culminating experience of the program is a capstone seminar, a student-conducted research project that demonstrates your knowledge and skills in religious studies. Graduates of the program are ultimately equipped with social awareness and theological knowledge that can be used in a variety of careers.
The Student Experience
For additional academic enrichment, students may complete an internship in an organization relevant to their studies, gaining valuable professional experience while still in school. Another excellent learning experience is completing a learning abroad program:by studying in a country with a religious holy place or high population of worshippers, you can see firsthand how religion shapes peoples’ daily lives. If you want to network and meet like-minded peers, consider joining Interfaith at the University of Utah or the Religious Studies Association.
Religious Studies graduates have a diverse variety of career options available to them once they graduate. Students may work internationally or domestically as public relations specialists, journalists, business representatives, or in humanitarian or nonprofit services (such as Habitat for Humanity). You can also work in campus ministry or at a local religious organization. Careers in editing, publishing, social work, or program management are also possible. Students who decide to continue their studies at the graduate level can find work as curators, librarians, diplomats, lawyers, or professors.