New Major and Minors Offer Students Specialized Education

Patrick Long, associate professor and chair of the Department of Music, works on a composition with Billie Tadros

Susquehanna University added a new major and two new minors to its list of academic offerings this fall. In addition to more than 50 majors and minors already offered at Susquehanna, students now have the option of selecting a major in music composition, and minors in publishing and editing, and professional accounting.

The Bachelor of Music in composition is ideal for students interested in studying music with the goal of composing original works. Those who declare this major can expect to study many different music styles while taking classes that teach them compositional techniques, says Patrick Long, associate professor and chair of the Department of Music, who believes the major will help strengthen Susquehanna’s reputation. Susquehanna has already had numerous music majors graduate to become successful composers and arrangers. The addition of a major in music composition will only increase future graduates’ chances for success in these fields, he says.

The new publishing and editing minor arose from student demand. Laurence Roth, English professor and director of the Jewish Studies Program, developed the curriculum after numerous students expressed interest in working with him on Modern Language Studies, the internationally distributed academic journal for which he is the editor. Over the last six years, 32 students have worked with him as editorial assistants, 11 this year alone. But Roth had to turn many away because there simply wasn’t enough work to go around. It was evident that students would benefit from a publishing and editing program, Roth says. “Susquehanna is one of the few liberal arts colleges to offer a program like this, and prospective students are increasingly interested in having a program that supplies a practical application of what they learn in their English and creative writing courses.”

Although an accounting minor, open to all students, already exists, the new professional accounting minor was developed to offer business students more flexibility within the field. This new minor is geared toward business majors—particularly business administration majors who originally weren’t able to pursue the field of accounting as a minor. “The existing minor in accounting is a way for non-business majors to get a basic background in business and accounting,” says Barbara McElroy, associate professor of accounting and chair of the Department of Accounting and Information Systems. The professional accounting minor offers upper-level accounting courses, giving business students who declare the minor a more detailed background in accounting, “enough,” McElroy says, “to undertake a career in accounting if they would choose.”


Contributing writers to the People & Places section are Heather Cobun ‘10; Gerald S. Cohen, associate vice president for communications and chief communications officer; Stephanie Hines ‘04; and Charlotte Lotz ‘12.

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