Community Studies

213 Oakes Academic Building

(831) 459-2371

Programs Offered

Community Studies B.A.

Founded in 1969, community studies is the oldest interdisciplinary program at UCSC. The longstanding hallmarks of community studies are its focus on social justice and its distinctive pedagogy integrating classroom learning and extended field study. Community studies was a national pioneer in the field of experiential education and its civic engagement model has been emulated widely. Community studies was also a pioneer in addressing principles of social justice, specifically inequities arising from race, class and gender dynamics in society at large, and in critically assessing strategies for achieving social change.

Community studies alumni have pursued a wide variety of professional careers in health care, K-12 education, public policy, social work, urban planning, higher education, and law. According to a 2005 alumni survey, almost 100 alumni have founded non-profit social justice organizations and many more have served on non-profit boards and/or in executive director positions. The phrase “we are everywhere” is an apt description of the contribution community studies alumni have made to society over the past half century.