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American Studies

New York & bridges from Brooklyn; Irving Underhill, 1913

Katie Petz, BA, ’12

Katie Petz is a doing exactly what she wanted to do when she graduated from Keene State with a dual major in Elementary Education and American Studies – she’s a Special Education Paraprofessional in Hollis, New Hampshire. Knowing she wanted a dual major, something she could combine with Elementary Education, Katie Petz considered both English and History. In American Studies, she found a blend of the two, and more.

Katie Petz, BA, ’12

Every day, I use the skills I learned decoding and analyzing literature with my students to help them better understand what they are reading.”

Katie Petz 2014, American Studies/Education

She’s convinced that American Studies can enhance the education of any student, regardless of their major.

Petz took a particular interest in the history and culture of American Indians, and she approached the subject through literature. “What excited me was that I read the stories, saw the true history within them and talked about what I read and what I felt. I questioned and explored ideas with my teachers and classmates in safe, open forum classes – a perfect fit for me. And I liked that no two professors are alike and no two classes are taught the same way from semester to semester. It’s a great program for students who are willing to embrace a wild ride of knowledge, and who will work hard to involve themselves in classroom discussions


Justin Churchill, BA, ‘11

After graduating from the American Studies Program at Keene State, Justin pursued a career as a sports writer, working for a several print and online publications. His work has been focused on college and prep school hockey for New England Hockey Journal. He also covers action as a regional beat reporter in the American Hockey League. Away from the ice he writes about his true love – soccer—covering the New England Revolution and Major League Soccer for Goal.com.

Churchill credits the American Studies Program with giving him a broader view of the world and his surroundings.

“The American Studies professors helped me come up with my own conclusions through discussion, debate, and a great set of core classes. My very train of thought constantly evolved in its own unique way, inspiring me to make a difference in my postgraduate life. No program at Keene State would be better for students who really want to make a difference following their undergraduate career.”

He chose American Studies as a major because he liked the variety of careers it would prepare him to enter, and he chose to follow his passion. “My career as a sports journalist arose from the great deal of writing experience I gained through the American Studies BA. It takes me all over the country and it’s wonderful to do something I love as a career.”


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American Studies
Anne Freisinger Cucchi
Administrative Assistant
603-358-2688

Department Chair
Dr. Sally Joyce
sjoyce@keene.edu
603-358-2691

Admissions Office
800-KSC-1909
229 Main Street
Keene, New Hampshire 03435