Welcome from the Dean
On behalf of the College of Humanities & Fine Arts (HFA), I am thrilled to welcome you to our community, a place we fondly refer to as the creative and cultural heart of the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
With a wealth of academic options, small classes taught by eminent faculty, and a dedicated staff of advisors, HFA offers students an experience that combines the character of an exceptional liberal arts college with the cross-disciplinary expansiveness of a flagship research university.
Our faculty are mindful of both the broad range of lived experiences that students bring to the classroom, their urgent need for answers, and the many paths that await them when they leave campus. We’re proud to have faculty who bring years of robust experience to the classroom as authors, researchers, artists, performers, public speakers, linguists, and more. These esteemed professors are ready to use their knowledge and talents to help students prepare for meaningful careers and internships in a wide range of fields, from performing and visual arts to law, medicine, journalism, communications, education, or entrepreneurship.
In HFA, students are given opportunities to create, explore, ask questions, and pose solutions. Our students are not just thinkers, but doers, problem solvers, and makers. Many participate in hands-on research in world-class facilities, such as the Olver Design Building and the Arts Bridge in the Bromery Center for the Arts. Upon graduation, students leave HFA with a solid foundation in critical thinking and effective communication. Perhaps most critically, they have a generous capacity for empathy—for endeavoring to understand the lives of others.
An array of programs, institutes, and centers can also be found within HFA. These organizations reflect the richness, vibrance, and intellect of our community, including the renowned Center for Renaissance Studies, which attracts scholars from all over the world; the nationally recognized Arts Extension Service, which provides consultation and training for arts professionals in the field and arts management courses on campus; and the Center for the Study of African-American Language, which leads in both community engagement and cutting-edge linguistics research.
By encouraging students to think, to express themselves, and to engage the world in a reflective manner, the humanities and arts prepare students for life in a world of change. It is my hope that you find a place in our community that feels like home, and you use our resources to make a difference in the world.
Interim Dean of the College of Humanities & Fine Arts
Professor of History