Guided by experienced faculty and community mentors, students earning a Social Justice Studies degree explore the reality and consequences of systemic oppression. They also learn how to respond to those realities and consequences in ways that alleviate immediate suffering and lead to social transformation.
Diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB) training is an emerging field among corporations and organizations. Many have committed to developing DEIB programs for their employees, creating a need for trained professionals. Lakeland's social justice studies degree prepares students for this emerging market in for-profit and non-profit organizations.
The degree also prepares students for justice-related service work and multiple positions in non-profit organizations. The degree is excellent preparation for graduate study in many fields, including law, communication, sociology, criminal justice, education and leadership development. As part of their education, minors and majors develop and implement a social justice project involving the wider community.
“The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., urged us to recognize ‘the fierce urgency of now’ in relation to issues of social injustice,” said Rev. Julie Mavity Maddalena, Ph.D., Lakeland’s Chaplain, a faculty member and director of the Ulrich Center for Faith, Ethics, and Justice. “Lakeland recognizes this need as well as the need to shape leaders who understand the complexities of issues and the lives at stake, leaders grounded in strong values, leaders with experience, leaders prepared to participate in the response to Dr. King’s call."
The work of social justice cannot be learned in the classroom alone. One thing that makes our major and minor in Social Justice distinctive is its deep dive into experiential learning as part of our Cooperative Education program. The pairing of classroom instruction with hands-on experience in justice and service-related contexts enables students to develop their gifts as agents of social change.
Students will receive both course credit and competitive compensation for their experiential learning in the program.
Students interested in the social justice studies major or minor are encouraged to apply for the Ulrich Scholarship. Students compete for a single full-tuition scholarship and nine $20,000 scholarships.
Our Ulrich Center for Faith, Ethics & Justice provides numerous forums for learning about the work of justice in our community, nation, and world. We invite social justice innovators and leaders to campus to engage our students on the work of justice, through ethics conversations, lectures, panel discussions, and more. The Ulrich Center also sponsors opportunities for service in the community.
Interested in our Social Justice Studies degree? Fill out the form below to learn more!