New Majors Prepare Students for Emerging Careers


Lebanon, Ill. — New academic programs that are interdisciplinary, visionary and pragmatic are preparing McKendree University students for emerging careers and a highly competitive workforce.

Think Globally

Climate change, economic stability, disease, terrorism, hunger, poverty and conflict are issues that require global solutions. An interdisciplinary global studies major focuses on these processes and problems, said Dr. Brian Frederking, professor of political science.

Global studies majors take political science, economics, history, religion, philosophy and a foreign language. Courses examine the world as an interacting community, including the movement of goods, the migration of people, the spread of technologies and the mixing of cultures. A semester of study abroad is encouraged.

The new program prepares graduates for careers in international organizations, businesses and law, as well as economic development, human rights, humanitarian groups, health, the environment, mass communication and a variety of government agencies.


Se Habla Español

At a time when some schools are saying adios to foreign language degrees, McKendree has added a major in Spanish.


“Spanish is very important in the U.S. and it will be so increasingly. Whatever their career path is, we encourage students to take a second major in a foreign language, or at least a minor, to be more competitive in the job market,” said Dr. Aurélie Capron, assistant professor of Spanish. “The degree provides students with the linguistic and cultural tools to communicate effectively with their Spanish-speaking audience today.”

The curriculum includes courses on language and culture, grammar and composition, cinema and summer study abroad. Courses on Latinos in the U.S. and Spanish-Latin American films focus on history and politics. Capron also teaches an online introductory Spanish for students in the health professions and an advanced course on using Spanish in business.


Sport Management

McKendree’s new athletic equipment management major is the first of its kind in the U.S.

The Schools of Business and Nursing and Health Professions now offer a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in sport management with two tracks: general, and athletic equipment management, a program that is unique to McKendree.

Sport management students learn to work as business managers in sport businesses and facilities, for major and minor league teams, and in recreation departments. Athletic equipment managers work with major and minor league teams, in university and college athletic departments, and with businesses involved with athletic equipment.

A Green Major

As businesses and government increasingly embrace “green” initiatives, more careers are focusing on environmental awareness and sustainability. McKendree’s environmental studies majors take business, law, communications and science to bring a variety of skills to their profession after they graduate. Study of the natural and social sciences, public policy, philosophical and religious world views and how they impact the natural world is well suited to the liberal arts education.

“Having this major shows that McKendree is a visionary institution,” said Dr. Duane Olson, associate professor of religious studies and an advisor to Green Team campus organization. “The university recognizes that environmental issues and policies will be important factors in U.S. and global political and social life in the next decades.”



McKendree University ranks among the top 13 percent of the Midwest’s Best Regional Colleges in the 2011 edition of U.S. News Media Group’sBest Colleges report.Founded in 1828, the historic Lebanon, Ill., campus is 25 miles from downtown St. Louis.