Valparaiso University nurtures a community whose members learn to embody social responsibility. The community challenges its members to discover ways of using their abilities in the service of the whole human family. Peace rooted in justice requires the nurturing of a culture of peace in homes, schools, communities, religious institutions, nations, and across the world. Peace rooted in justice requires teaching peace and social justice to cultivate those who will become socially responsible leaders.

The Peace and Social Justice Studies Minor

The Peace and Social Justice Studies Minor is an interdisciplinary program focusing on social responsibility by examining the means of establishing justice, achieving peace, and resolving conflicts nonviolently. There are two alternative tracks in the program. The International/Global Track concentrates on social responsibility between nations and other large groups, while the Individual/Local Track focuses on social responsibility among individuals, small groups and communities.

A minimum of 18 credit hours is required for the minor in peace and social justice studies. Specific required courses are listed below.

Program Core
PSJ 201 Principles of Peace and Social Justice 3 credits
PSJ 386 Internship in Peace and Social Justice Studies 3 credits
International/Global Track 9 credits 
Concentrates on social responsibility between nations and other large groups
Nine credits from the following options (no more than two courses from specified
General Electives and no more than two courses from a single department):
HIST 329 Revolution! Insurgence in Latin America 3 credits
HIST 350 Colonialism and Independence: Understanding Modern Africa 3 credits
HIST 355 Modern Middle Eastern History 3 credits
POLS 230 International Relations 3 credits
THEO 334 Holocaust Theology 3 credits
THEO 345 The Church in the World 3 credits
THEO 362 Islamic Religion and Culture 3 credits
Individual/Local Track 9 credits 
Concentrates on social responsibility among individuals, small groups, and communities
Nine credits from the following options (no more than two courses from specified
General Electives and no more than two courses from a single department):
ECON 136 The Economics of Health, Education, and Welfare 3 credits
ECON 233 The Economics of Race and Gender 3 credits
HIST 225 Alternative Perspectives of United States History 3 credits
POLS 340 Constitutional Law I 3 credits
POLS 345 The Judicial Process 3 credits
SOC 130 The Criminal Justice System 3 credits
SOC 210 Contemporary Social Problems 3 credits
SOC 275 Systems of Social Stratification 3 credits
SOC 360 Penology 3 credits
SOC 390 Issues in Sociology 3 credits
SOCW 260 Diverse Populations: Human Rights & Justice 3 credits
THEO 329 Topics in Christian History (when topic is appropriate) 3 credits
THEO 333 Black Theology and Black Church 3 credits
THEO 349 Topics in Religious Ethics (when topic is appropriate) 3 credits
THEO 353 Studies in Theology and Practice 3 credits
General Electives
No more than one course at the 100-level and no more than two courses from a single department
PHIL 250 Political Philosophy 3 credits
POLS 250 Political Philosophy 3 credits
POLS 361 Public Policy 3 credits
POLS 490 Seminar in Political Science 3 credits
PSY 125 Social Psychology 3 credits
PSY 390 Special Topics in Psychology 3 credits
THEO 318 Jesus and the Gospels 3 credits
Several other courses, offered as topics courses and seminars, will be publicized when approved by the administrative committee. A student who wishes to include a course not on the list of electives must obtain the approval of the administrative committee before enrolling in that course.


Administrative Committee

Jennifer Winquist
Professor of Psychology
Tel: 219.464.6841
Email: Jennifer.Winquist@valpo.edu

Shodhin Geiman
Associate Professor of Psychology
Tel: 219.464.5245
Email: Shodhin.Geiman@valpo.edu

Matthew Ringenberg
Associate Professor of Social Work
Tel: 219.464.5106
Email: Matthew.Ringenberg@valpo.edu

Lissa Yongan
Associate Professor of Sociology and Criminology
Tel: 219.464.6998
Email: Lissa.Yogan@valpo.edu

David Western (chair)
Lecturer in Humanities and Political Philosophy
Tel: 219.464.5346
Email: David.Western@valpo.edu