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Interdisciplinary Concentration

The Hamilton curriculum is about forging creative connections. If it doesn’t offer what you need, with faculty guidance you may design an interdisciplinary major that fits your needs precisely. Imagine the possibilities; say, for instance, Hispanic studies/women's studies/computer science or philosophy/mathematics/dance. It can happen at Hamilton.


Jake Meserve Blount ’17

A student falls for the banjo and finds his path

Jake Meserve Blount ’17 is spending his summer traveling to music festivals around the East Coast to research a style of Appalachian old-time music he says is native to Ithaca, N.Y.  A grant from Hamilton College is funding the project. Blount entered Hamilton thinking he’d major in psychology, then discovered the banjo (thanks to banjo player and music Professor Lydia Hamessley) and old-time music. From there, Blount developed his own course of study in ethnomusicology through the interdisciplinary studies major. “It seemed natural that my first major fieldwork project would be into a style of music that has influenced me so hugely,” he says. “I’ve also found a few other great research opportunities through Hamilton; I spent the past semester with the Hamilton in New York City program.  I interned in the Department of Musical Instruments at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and catalogued their Appalachian dulcimer collection and learned to play the dizi (a traditional Chinese bamboo flute) as an independent study.”

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Jason Haas ’07 with President Obama
Jason Haas ’07 with President Obama

A graduate’s progress: activism and acting

Jason Haas ’07 built his own interdisciplinary major of communications and government and added a theatre minor into the mix. It’s easy to see a link between his interests at Hamilton College and his evolving career. Haas is a digital-media marketing consultant – and volunteer – for progressive organizations and socially responsible corporations. He still enjoys writing and acting for stage productions.

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