SJC Long Island Department of Religious Studies
Explore world religions. Join the quest for deeper meaning. Get ready.
Religion is relevant to the most fundamental questions that we ask, and it is central to our quest for meaning. Delve into the world of religious beliefs, spirituality and exploration with SJC Long Island’s Department of Religious Studies.
A major force in human experience, religion is infused throughout our endeavors — art, literature, science, politics, architecture, music, psychology and so much more. At SJC Long Island, students examine religion in the context of society, history and culture.
What can you do with a religious studies degree?
In addition to further study in religion, students go on to pursue advanced degrees in law, medicine and other areas of study, promoting understanding and quality communication across spiritual and cultural divides. Graduates of the religious studies program enjoy a variety of careers, as religion plays an increasingly important role in the global economy and politics.
Get ready to make a positive difference in the world. Come study with SJC Long Island’s Department of Religious Studies.
Rachel Sullivan ’20
B.A. in Religious Studies, Philosophy and Psychology with a minor in Mindfulness and Contemplative Living
"To be engaged in religious studies classes often means that we must be willing to leave behind the things we thought were certain—and our need to depend only on what we can see or touch or test—in pursuit of questions much larger than us. If we are lucky, as I think we all are under the guidance of such amazing professors—this is how we become wiser."
The SJC Long Island Religious Studies Experience
Interconnectedness: Looking to expand your area of study? Choose to major in religious studies and philosophy, or compliment your existing major with a minor in religious studies, peace and justice studies, or mindfulness and contemplative living.
Celebrate Your Success: Students who excel in the program have the opportunity to be inducted into Theta Alpha Kappa, the National Honor Society for Religious Studies and Theology.
Study Abroad: Global study trips encourage a deeper understanding of the self and the fundamental questions of the world by encouraging students to immerse themselves in other cultures. Past trips include travel to Oxford and Taiwan.
Learn more about our Religious Studies degrees and programs
Religious Studies Major
Two disciplines, one specialization.
Gain a breadth of knowledge that can factor into any profession. With a bachelor’s in religious studies, students explore both disciplines, with a specialization in one.
Religious Studies Minor
Broaden your academic experience.
With a minor in religious studies, students can enhance their majors in such fields as history, political science, English and psychology, or they could pursue graduate work in religious studies or theology. It could also be helpful for students who wish to teach in a religiously affiliated school or become engaged in a form of a church-based ministry.
Peace and Justice Studies Minor
Understand through social action.
An interdisciplinary minor, peace and justice studies identifies and analyzes the conditions that contribute to injustice, social conflict and war. Through reflection on moral and ethical values and the application of social action struggles, students are challenged to participate in the struggle to make peace and justice a social reality.
Mindfulness and Contemplative Living Minor
Take your career further.
This interdisciplinary minor combines knowledge and skills from the areas of psychology, religious studies, philosophy, communication studies and physical education. It is ideal for students who want to work in helping professions, such as pastor counseling, mental health counselors, clinical social workers, creative art therapists and speech pathologists.
Certificate in Religious Studies
Meet leadership needs in church-affiliated settings.
Gain the skills and knowledge necessary to meet leadership needs in church-affiliated settings. Open to both matriculated and non-matriculated students, the program is designed to prepare individuals for roles of leadership and service in such areas as religious education, youth ministry, social outreach, marriage preparation and family ministry.
Dr. Petriano wrote an article entitled "Our Weakness Is Our Strength: Reflections on the Power of Vulnerability," which is published in the Human Development magazine. Read the article here.
Professor Thomas Petriano appeared on the C.A.F.E. web series hosted by SJC psychology professor Peter Lin. Dr. Petriano focuses on five spiritual practices that can help: cultivating gratitude, creating time for calm and stillness, letting go of the need for certainty, and practicing self-compassion. Watch C.A.F.E. 229 on YouTube.