African American Studies

African American Studies classroom

The African American Studies program at Emory combines academic rigor with social responsibility to examine how African Americans have helped shape the nation. Emory's undergraduate program was the first of its kind in the Southeast, embracing Atlanta's roots as the birthplace of the civil rights movement.

You’ll learn about:

  • The global African diaspora
  • The challenges and achievements of African American communities across the U.S.
  • And gain a deeper understanding of the cultural, historical, and political movements that inform both the present and the future.


African American Studies majors bring much needed social and cultural awareness to every sector of the workforce. They contribute to community development, foreign service, journalism, media relations, news analysis, politics, and multicultural consulting and serve their communities in for profit, nonprofit, and governmental sectors.

Recent graduates work at IBM, Northwestern University, New York University, Booz Allen Hamilton, Georgia State University, and the South Carolina Democratic Party.

They have also gone on to pursue advanced degrees at such prestigious institutions as University of Michigan, Georgetown University, and University of Maryland Law School.

Emory's AAS program
The first of its kind in the Southeastern U.S.

Example of Major Classes


Mariah Dozé

Communications Fail

Corporations pour millions of dollars into their advertising campaigns. Mariah Dozé 20C, sociology and African American studies double major, focused her research on what happens when, instead of winning over loyal fans, campaigns spark social media firestorms.

The Georgia Civil Rights Cold Cases Project

Undergraduates dig into personal archives, family photographs, newspaper clippings and FBI records to shed light on unsolved racially-motivated murders from Georgia’s modern civil rights era. The class is taught every semester by Emory professor Hank Klibanoff, a veteran journalist, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, and a Peabody Award-winning podcast host.

I want to see how race and politics play out in other countries' criminal justice systems. Having a broader perspective and more ideas to consider means I can be a better activist and propose better solutions.

Chelsea Jackson
Political Science and African American Studies double major, on being selected for the prestigious Rhodes Scholarship to study at the University of Oxford in England