Who We Are

At UNC Asheville, studying history is more than just learning about the past. To study history is to study change. Everything we do, use, and study is the product of a complex set of causes, ideas, and practices. The study of history is an enriching process

UNC Asheville’s liberal arts focus challenges history majors to investigate some of life’s biggest questions: What is the nature of humanity? What motivates us? How does the past influence our future? The Department of History’s faculty and students explore these concepts and more through research projects, presentations, and collaborative and creative work. Our experienced faculty members have diverse backgrounds and expertise, and thrive on mentoring each of their students.

What You’ll Learn

History majors learn research techniques, sharpen their writing skills, and apply them to the study of Appalachian history, African-American history, American history, the history of cultures around the world, and the history of ideas. Small classes featuring group discussions help students hone their communication skills, preparing them for careers in business, law, education, government, communications, politics, multimedia, and more. Beyond the classroom, many students present their research at professional conferences and participate in the History Student Association or Phi Alpha Theta, the history honor society.

UNC Asheville is founder and host of the African Americans in Western North Carolina & Southern Appalachia Conference, convened annually by Associate Professor of History Darin Waters. Scholars and community activists from around the region gather for presentations from a variety of disciplines—including sociology, history, anthropology, literature, and others. The goal of the conference is to provide an open forum for scholars to engage each other and our community on the vital issues facing Appalachian communities of color.