Of the 80 declared sociology majors, 26 are pursuing a second major or an interdisciplinary concentration. The double majors range from biology to Religious Studies to Spanish, and the concentrations from Gender and Women’s Studies to Environmental Studies. “I feel that it is easy to combine sociology with other majors” comments Rachel Allison ’07, a sociology and French double major. “Sociology is an extremely transportable discipline that can enhance the study of any other discipline, no matter how dissimilar.”
Like Allison, Mark Wilcox ‘09, a sociology and chemistry double major, has positive comments about his experiences. Wilcox, who hopes to pursue a career in medicine or in chemistry, recognizes that his sociological training will be beneficial in any context. “I will be better equipped to lead a life of activism, regardless of my future profession, because of my degree in sociology” he says. Likewise, Sarah Smith ’07, a sociology and theater double major, has received very encouraging feedback on her double major. “Having a double major has also allowed me to get an internship using both of my majors . . . my supervisors love the fact that I have doubled in what seem to be two very different academic areas.”
Many students feel that the sociology major is particularly conducive to interdisciplinary study. “The Sociology Department has been amazingly flexible in terms of course offerings” notes Anne Bernier ’07, a sociology and psychology double major. “I think the Sociology Department in general is very accommodating towards double majors and the major itself really works well with a lot of other majors.”
Chris Neubert ’08, a sociology major concentrating in Global Development Studies, has integrated his academic pursuits with his study abroad experience. “I chose to concentrate in Global Development Studies (GDS) because I felt that the GDS courses would be able to enhance my sociology major in a way that best suited me. I absolutely love all of the classes I have taken for my concentration . . . I probably would not have taken some of my most favorite classes, or even traveled to Sri Lanka, had it not been for GDS.”
While students seem overall pleased with their choice to double major or concentrate, scheduling can prove tricky. Students who are enrolled in both sociology and natural science courses sometimes find that their lab schedules conflict with seminar offerings. Furthermore, the additional requirements leave little time for elective classes. “I think I have not taken as many classes outside my majors as I would have with only one major” observes Smith.
Overall, though, sociology majors seem pleased with the choice to expand their academic horizons.
Eszter Csicsai ’07 eloquently sums up the common sentiment surrounding double majoring: “I majored in sociology and art history. I have found them to make a dynamic combination . . . It is fascinating to examine how culture is ‘created,’ presented, and consumed within museums both from an art historical and from a sociological perspective. It has always seemed that both departments have been interested in and supportive of my experiences in the other. This double major has served me well.”