Interdisciplinary Programs

True to its liberal arts tradition, Washington and Lee boasts many robust interdisciplinary programs. Williams School students take many courses in these programs and often minor in areas like environmental studies and poverty and human capability studies. Williams School faculty are also heavily involved in interdisciplinary programs across campus, teaching courses and serving as directors.

Africana Studies Program

Africana Studies is an interdisciplinary minor that examines the culture and experiences of African people and those who make up the African Diaspora throughout the world. Relevant courses come from a variety of disciplines including literature, history, sociology, economics, politics, art and music.

East Asian Studies Program

East Asian Studies is a closely coordinated, interdepartmental program representing seven departments and eight disciplines. It offers some fifty courses, ranging from art to economics, culminating in a minor that may be focused upon either China or Japan. Interested students are encouraged to study abroad in East Asia.

Environmental Studies Program

The Environmental Studies major and interdisciplinary minor require an understanding of the sciences, social sciences, and humanities. These programs are designed to educate students in a broad class of issues related to the environment and humanity’s place in the natural world.

Digital Culture and Information

An interdisciplinary program in Digital Culture and Information (DCI) allows students to deeply explore how the digital age impacts knowledge and society. Students will discover how software transforms information into valuable resources as well as the dangerous potential of algorithmically biased tools.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies

The minor in Latin American and Caribbean Studies is an interdisciplinary program that allows students to explore the civilization, culture and society of the various sub-regions of Latin America and the Caribbean. In particular, the program examines how its cultures have been shaped by the meeting of Amerindian, African and European peoples as well as the modern-day commonalities and diversity within the region.

Middle East and South Asia Studies (MESA)

The Middle East and South Asia (MESA) minor program is an interdisciplinary program of study focused on the Middle East (including Arabic-speaking North Africa) and South Asia (including Tibet, and mainland and insular Southeast Asia as far east as Vietnam and Indonesia).

Shepherd Poverty Program

Washington and Lee's Shepherd Program for the Interdisciplinary Study of Poverty and Human Capability integrates rigorous academic coursework with co-curricular service to disadvantaged communities and persons. It supplements and enriches the education of W&L undergraduate and law students in all majors and career paths, and nearly 20 percent of the student body participates in a Shepherd Program course.

Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies

The Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies (WGSS) program at Washington and Lee University offers students both the opportunity to complete a multi-disciplinary minor in feminist and gender studies and a stimulating co-curricular environment in which to develop as intellectual and community leaders. Founded in 2001, the WGSS is a vibrant academic program that links the classroom with the world and offers the theoretical basis for activism and social change.