Major in Asian Studies

Why choose a major in Asian Studies?

This major integrates many different academic disciplines and perspectives into a holistic sense of Asian culture and society. It will change the way you see the world as well as how you imagine your role in it.

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  • Asia is a dominant force, comprising 57% of the world's population. In San Francisco alone 32% of the city's population is Asia n, providing numerous resources for the study of Asian culture and society.
  • More than half of US global trade is with countries of Asia (as well as over 70% of the US trade deficit!).
  • Asian nations will be in the vanguard of economic, political, and especially technological changes in the coming decades. This has profound implications for U.S. trade and foreign policies.
  • Asia is the source for some of the world's most significant and long-lasting philosophical, religious, and spiritual ideas.
  • 'Asia literacy' provides students with a familiarity and expertise in dealing with Asian societies, languages, political systems, economies, and cultures.
  • Asia is a source for some of the most interesting cuisine, film, anime, music, and art in our time. You can eat Asian cuisine, see Asian films, attend events / museums / lectures on Asia, dance to Asian pop music, and even travel and live there — all in the interest of your major!
Future Careers

To make students competitive in the job market, our program focuses on emphasizing academic fundamentals (critical thinking, communication skills, research approaches) as well as expertise in specific Asian Regions. A major in Asian Studies helps open career doors in a wide variety of fields:

 What can YOU do with an Asian Studies Degree?

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  • Business
  • Communications/Public Relations
  • Education
  • Non-profit (NPO) and Non-Governmental (NGO) organizations (e.g. Asia Foundation, World Affairs Council, Japan Society)
  • Social Service Agencies

A Bachelor's Degree in Asian Studies will also prepare students for advanced graduate work in a variety of academic disciplines (History, International Business, Politics, Law, Religious Studies, Anthropology, Comparative Literature, Media Studies, Linguistics, Environmental Studies).

Students can dramatically boost their academic and career opportunities by:
  • combining the major with one in the Humanities, Business, or Science.
  • pursuing internships with leading companies and organizations in the Bay Area as well as mentor relationships with professionals in Asia/Pacific relations
  • conducting research through the internationally known USF Ricci Institute and the The Nautilus Institute for Security & Sustainable Development
  • participating in extra-curricular activities such as student organizations, symposiums, lectures by well-known speakers, and cultural events on campus
  • joining faculty-led intensive study tours to Asian nations 
  • combining the major with a master's degree in only five years through the BA/BS-MAPS ("4+1") Program in Asia Pacific Studies

Whatever your dreams might be, talking to an advisor is the first step in realizing them effectively.