College of Arts and Sciences
A Message from the Dean
The importance of the “examined life” is the cornerstone of Jesuit education and likely one of the reasons that has compelled you to return to graduate school. Whether you are seeking the advanced professional opportunities a graduate degree can offer, considering a career change, or simply looking to explore a new field or nurture your own personal growth and development, graduate study, at its core, begins with the process of self reflection. We are excited that you have decided to embark on that journey with us.
The College of Arts and Sciences offers five distinct programs that lead to the Master's degree: American Studies (MA), Communication (MA), Creative Writing (MFA), Mathematics (MS), and Public Administration (MPA). Highly qualified and caring faculty who share a commitment to teaching, a passion for their subject matter, and deep appreciation for research administer all of our graduate programs. Moreover, our collective commitment to delivering instruction in an intimate academic environment means that students will have the opportunity to participate in programs that allow students from diverse backgrounds and life experiences to interact and develop a strong sense of community with one another. Along with our dedicated faculty, you will have the opportunity to explore new ideas, develop exciting methods of inquiry, and tackle real world problems. In the process, you may even discover a new sense of purpose.
Along the way you will find that our model of rigorous instruction, concern for individual student learning, promotion of life-long study, and deep engagement with the ethical dimensions will greatly enhance your chosen field of study, making it even more personally meaningful and professionally rewarding.
You will find that our Jesuit educational traditions and University mission will add value to your graduate degree. For a graduate degree is much more than the means to an end. It connects you to a long intellectual tradition which places value and significance in the cultivation of knowledge, invites you to become a member of a broader community of scholars, honors your unique human potential, and inspires leadership.
On behalf of the faculty and staff in the College of Arts and Sciences, I welcome you to Fairfield University and the look forward helping you reach all of your goals.
Richard Greenwald, PhD
Dean, College of Arts and Sciences
The College of Arts and Sciences, Fairfield's largest and oldest school, offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in a wide array of fields. The College hosts some 17 academic departments and more than 20 degree programs, led by nearly 160 full-time faculty members. The College offers 23 majors that lead to a bachelor of arts or a bachelor of science degree, along with many complementary minors. Each year, more than 2,000 undergraduate and graduate students engage in thought-provoking courses with topics ranging from America's immigrant history to the religions of India and from thermodynamics to filmmaking. The College is also home to the University's undergraduate core curriculum designed to develop the whole person and provide a sound general education upon which undergraduates can build their major programs of study.
Five graduate degrees -- the Master of Arts in American Studies established in 1997, the Master of Science in Mathematics established in 2000, the Master of Arts in Communication and the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing (MFA) created in 2008, and the Master of Public Administration (MPA) established in 2013 -- expand the offerings available through the College. Students who elect to earn an MA in American Studies examine the complexities of the American experience through an interdisciplinary approach that builds on the expertise of nine distinct departments. The MA in Communication can lead to many exciting outcomes in a variety of careers covering the latest developments in communication theory, research, practice, and application. The MFA in Creative Writing will enable students to improve their own writing skills and learn about the theory of writing along with the practical aspects of getting published. Those who seek an MS in Mathematics become part of a community of scholars, teachers, and business people whose graduate study supports practical applications and professional development. The MPA emphasizes theory, research, and application to advance careers in state and city government, nonprofit organizations, health care management and private research. The College's graduate programs each feature small, seminar-style courses, taught predominantly by full-time Fairfield faculty members.