College Catalog: 2011-2012

School of Social Science and Human Services (SSHS): African American Studies

Four Year Plan
School of Social Science and Human Services Website



  • Karl E. Johnson
  • David Lewis-Colman


  • Erin Augis
  • Peter A. Campbell (CA)
  • Regina Clark (CA)
  • Rosina D’Angelo (AIS)
  • Niza Fabre (AIS)
  • George Gonpu (ASB)
  • Sandra Gonsalves-Domond


  • Peter D. Heinze
  • Joseph Johnson (AIS)
  • Mitchell Kahn
  • John Peffer (CA)
  • Andre Perry (CA)
  • Paul Reck
  • Tilahun Sineshaw
About the Major

The Africana Studies Major prepares students to become informed and positive participants in the world community by developing a global perspective on Africa and its Diaspora.  Building on Ramapo College’s heritage of interdisciplinary inquiry and discourse that has lead to innovations in teaching and student learning, the Program strives to imbue students with an analysis about Africa and its Diaspora far beyond that of a foundational knowledge base. Thus, our goals are to give our students an affirmative, transformative experience through learning about Africa’s people and Diasporic contributions to world culture with their arts, labor, resources, and civil and human rights ideologies.  We embrace this new challenge to prepare our students to meet the current challenges of the 21st Century that Africa faces because it is central to the geocentric quest for peace and harmony throughout the world.

To accomplish these goals we rely on an extraordinary diverse faculty that are experts in a number of disciplines throughout all of our various Schools at Ramapo College.  Our faculty is united in the belief of preparing our students to be global citizens in our technologically advancing world in the 21st century.  Furthermore, the Faculty believes that this must be done by developing our students’ critical thinking skills, oral competence, writing ability, technological and ecological literacy in order to facilitate positive change on behalf of the African Diaspora and humanity.

What can you do with a B.A. in Africana Studies Degree? Jobs, Business Opportunities, Graduate School:

This region in particular provides current job opportunities and an immense future growth of opportunities for an Africana Studies major because it’s near New York City, which is a global and international hub.  An Africana studies major can get a job in the emerging global financial business industry, with International Relief Agencies, with Federal or State Diplomatic services, with the Central Intelligence Agency, with United Nation agencies, with religious Foreign Missions, in International education.  Also, they will get jobs in the traditional jobs of teaching education.  For example, in the State Legislation of New Jersey in 2002 they passed the Amistad Act Law chapter 16A of title 52, requiring all New Jersey schools teach the history of African Americans.  There are also many options for those who want to pursue a Masters as well as a Ph.D. if so desired.  In the past as well as currently other traditional jobs in news media, popular magazines, entertainment, politics, social work, etc. have been successfully held by college graduates with this major and there is solid research on this topic.  (See “What Can You do with a Black Studies Major and Minor” by Robert Fikes, Librarian San Diego State University 2004)

The Africana Studies Major leads to the B.A. Degree, and is offered through the School of Social Science and Human Services.  A minor is also available.

Requirements of the Major
  1. Transfer students who have 48 or more credits accepted at the time of transfer are waived from the courses marked with a (W) below.  Waivers only apply to General Education Requirements NOT School Core or Major Requirements.
  2. Double counting between General Education, School Core, and Major may be possible.  Check with your advisor to see if any apply.
  3. Writing Intensive Requirement: Three writing intensive courses in the general education curriculum are required: First Year Seminar, Critical Reading and Writing (formerly College English), and Readings in Humanities.

Note: A 2.0 GPA in the major is required for graduation.

Requirements of the Minor
  1. At least 1/2 of the courses fulfilling a minor must be distinct from the student’s major. That is, three of the five courses required for a minor cannot be used towards fulfillment of major requirements. A school core does not need to be completed for a minor. Minors are open to students regardless of school affiliation.