First Year Program - Peace and Conflict Studies Skip Navigation

Peace and Conflict Studies (PCON)

Director: J. Hyslop
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Since its creation in 1970, Colgate’s Peace and Conflict Studies Program has been at the forefront of research and instruction in this interdisciplinary field. The program presents a challenging course of study that integrates trans-disciplinary academic approaches to war and peace with research into specific regional conflicts and their aftermaths. The curriculum offers students a range of opportunities to explore the complex impacts of violence, the challenges of human security, and human rights issues in global perspective. With its regular film and media series, symposia, lectures, and unique electives, the program is actively involved in promoting the study of peace, conflict, and security at Colgate and beyond. After taking advantage of the distinctive combination of faculty and program resources at Colgate, peace and conflict studies majors have pursued successful careers in various international arenas, including law, government, development, journalism, academe, and the private sector.

The Peace and Conflict Studies Program offers both a major and a minor to students looking for an interdisciplinary degree that focuses on key global problems such as war, peace, conflict, violence, aggression, and the role of nonviolence in social change. The core courses deal with peace and conflict at the individual, cultural, and community levels, as well as internationally.

Peace and conflict studies offers a wide choice of courses—both the core peace studies courses and other interdisciplinary courses—as well as selected departmental offerings. Some of the peace and conflict studies courses are cross-listed and offer credit both in the program and in such departments as history, philosophy, political science, religion, and sociology and anthropology. PCON 111 serves as a good introduction to peace and conflict studies.  Each year, peace and conflict studies offers a program on campus of outstanding movies and speakers that is open to all, often linked to classes, and also workshops, exhibitions, and conferences. These are frequently linked to a dialogue about current conflicts both at home and abroad.

A large proportion of peace and conflict studies graduates go on to graduate and professional schools in areas as diverse as peace studies, law, journalism, religion, and the social sciences. PCON faculty frequently help place students in summer internships, including those in Washington and Halifax, Nova Scotia. Graduates also work in non-profit or non-governmental and international organizations concerned with global peace and justice.