Development Studies


Sustainable development implies use of natural resources and organization of economic activity in ways that can be maintained indefinitely. In order for development to be sustainable, all regions of the world and all social classes must have political and economic agency. This recognizes that as people meet the needs (including social, political, cultural, economic, and health) of current generations without compromising the ability of future generations to also meet their needs, they do so through fair and equitable processes of production, distribution, and consumption.

Program Overview

For the Development Studies Nexus, students devise their own plan in consultation with the track chair and must seek advance approval from the chair.

Courses and Requirements

Requirements for the Nexus

A minimum of 18 credits:

Three courses above the 100 level chosen from the list of courses approved for this Nexus or selected with approval of the track chair12
One approved 300-level course from the list of courses approved for this Nexus or selected with approval of the track chair4
A substantive internship 1
COLL-211Reflecting Back: Connecting Internship and Research to Your Liberal Arts Education2
A presentation at LEAP Symposium
Total Credits18

At least 200 work hours and responsibilities that exercise ability to think analytically and creatively, and contribute meaningfully to the organization鈥檚 stated mission and complements the student's area of focus

Additional Specifications

  • Nexus students will develop a brief proposal outlining their specific area of focus including a course outline. Students will schedule an advising meeting with a track chair to get approval and complete a  to be returned to the Nexus Program office.

  • The sequence of a Nexus is part of what makes it unique:
    • In preparation for the summer internship or research, students complete courses chosen in consultation with the track chair. If seeking funding through LYNK UAF, students will additionally complete orientation and advising, and online training.

    • COLL-211 is taken after the internship or research project and culminates in a presentation at LEAP Symposium.

Courses Counting toward the Nexus

Courses other than those listed below may count toward the Nexus. Students should consult the Nexus track chair for consideration of courses not on the list.

ANTHR-216HRSpecial Topics in Anthropology: 'Anthropology and Human Rights'4
College(Interdeptmnt) Courses
COLL-211Reflecting Back: Connecting Internship and Research to Your Liberal Arts Education2
ECON-213Economic Development4
ECON-241Critical Development Studies4
ECON-314Globalization and Development4
Environmental Studies
ENVST-210Political Ecology4
ENVST-346Global Inequality, Smart Earth Technology, and Environmental Governance4
Entrepreneurship, Orgs & Soc
EOS-299RJTopic: 'Research, Ethics, Justice, and Campus Sustainability'4
GEOG-105World Regional Geography4
GEOG-204Human Dimensions of Environmental Change4
GEOG-208Global Movements: Migrations, Refugees and Diasporas4
GEOG-313Third World Development4
GEOG-319Africa: Problems and Prospects4
HIST-357History of British Capitalism4
POLIT-246American Political Thought4
POLIT-249African Politics4
RELIG-181Introduction to African Diaspora Religions4
RELIG-331AFAdvanced Topics in Religion: 'African American Spiritualities of Dissent'4
SOCI-240Collective Behavior and Social Movements4
SOCI-316DGSpecial Topics in Sociology: 'Sociology of Development and Globalization'4

Contact Us

The Nexus Program allows students to create an individual program of study combined with an internship experience in one of nine pre-professional tracks. College 211 and the annual LEAP symposium are components of the Nexus program.

Katie Walker
  • Coordinator, Nexus Program

Next Steps

Apply to Mount Holyoke

Mount Holyoke seeks intellectually curious applicants who understand the value of a liberal arts education and are driven by a love of learning. As a women's college that is gender diverse, we welcome applications from female, trans and non-binary students.

Financing your education

Everyone鈥檚 financial situation is unique, and we鈥檙e here to make sure cost does not get in the way of an exceptional education.