History at Rowan University

The Department of History at Rowan University delivers high quality instruction and advising to both undergraduate and graduate students. Our faculty produce nationally and internationally recognized research and possess chronologically and geographically diverse specialties in areas such as the ancient Mediterranean, early modern Europe, colonial Africa, colonial North America, the Middle East, Russia, the Far East, and the modern United States.

The undergraduate and graduate curricula incorporate the latest scholarship and technology but are based on the time-tested and enduring values of the liberal arts. Our faculty teach courses in a wide range of courses including histories of ancient Egypt, medieval Europe, imperialism and colonialism, the American Revolution and Early Republic, the American Civil War and Reconstruction, World War II, the Arab-Israeli Conflict, Women in American History, the 1960s, and more!

Many of our graduates go on to teaching social studies at public and independent schools in New Jersey, and we are proud of our network of successful alumni teachers in the region. Beyond teaching, there are a wide variety of career options open for history majors. In addition to attending law school and graduate school, recent graduates work in a diverse range of fields in both the private and public sectors, including finance, entertainment, and public history.

Student Highlights

  • History and Political Science major Katherine Trauger has contributed to the just-launched Foreign Influence Election 2020, a research project based at the Foreign Policy Research Institute in Philadelphia. The project seeks to protect the 2020 election from foreign interference by filling gaps in data, knowledge, and understanding of how foreign powers seek to degrade American institutions, elected officials, and presidential candidates. Katherine is one of the Research Analysts from several universities and colleges across the U.S. and Europe who identify and analyze stories from state-sponsored media outlets in Russia, China, and Iran that explicitly mention 2020 U.S. presidential candidates. The Project website is: https://www.fpri.org/research/fie2020/ 
  • History major Sean French was awarded a Boren scholarship in October 2019. After intensive language study this summer in Japan, he is studying Japanese and Japanese history at J.F. Oberlin University in Tokyo.  Congratulations Sean!
  • Rowan alum Mary Spanarkel has been awarded an English Language Felowship to Vietnam through the U.S. State Department. Starting August 2019, Mary will spend 10 months showcasing best practices for effective English instruction to Vietnamese students and teachers! 
  • Professor Jennifer Janofsky's students visited historic St. Thomas Church in Glassboro this April for a guided tour with Rich Droboli of the Glassboro Historic Commission. The church was established in the 1840s and holds a place on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • History alum Anthony Spatola ('10) has been profiled in a Rowan Alumni Spotlight interview, readable here: https://goo.gl/vpJoxP

Faculty News

  • Professor Josh Gedacht published a book chapter titled "Muhammadiyah, Membership Dues, and the Islamic Economy in Colonial Asia," in an edited volume, Muslim Piety as Economy: Markets, Meaning, and Morality in Southeast Asia.  Here is the website for the volume: https://bit.ly/2DK5vx5
  • Professor Jody Russell Manning was invited to the Clark University conference: "Agency in the Holocaust and Genocide: A Symposium to Celebrate 20 Years of Ph.D. Training at the Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies featuring Strassler Center Ph.D. Alumni" this September 2019.
  • Dr. Keith Aksel recently published an op-ed in the Cleveland Plain Dealer. The article covers Ohio's forgotten status as a small-scale Silicon Valley for heavy manufacturing. Read more here.
  • Professor Josh Gedacht has recently published an article in Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Asian History, entitled "Port Cities and Islamic Insurgency across Southeast Asia, 1850–1913." See the article at this link: https://bit.ly/2UKNJA5 
  • Dr. Edward Wang was recently interviewed by Heritage Radio on its program called "Feast meets West" on the history and culture of chopsticks. Listen to the interview here: https://bit.ly/2WB2cAy
  • ​The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Wiener Library for the Study of the Holocaust & Genocide, and the International Tracing Service (ITS) has invited Professor Jody Russell Manning to attend a workshop to review and evaluate ITS-related educational materials at the Museum in Washington, DC from 14-16 January 2019. Manning's two upper-level “Nazi Camp System” courses had worked with the ITS digital archive in Spring 2018 to assess the effectiveness of their unpublished newly developed primary source program.