Interdisciplinary Degree Programs

Our Stories

Amanda Bingson

Major Olympian — Amanda Bingson

Our student Amanda Bingson represented the U.S. in the hammer throw this summer at the Olympics Games in London!

Bingson is currently majoring in interdisciplinary studies with areas of study in physical education and psychology.

"My degree has given me the opportunity to prepare for what I want to do after my career in athletics," she says. She hopes to use her experience and education to help future collegiate student-athletes meet their goals and aspirations.

In the fall, she will be completing an internship at Texas State University in the track and field program under the supervision of throws Coach Greg Watson.

Jackson Nightshade

Social Sciences Graduate, Spring 2012 — Jackson Nightshade

I am currently a graduate student studying to become a licensed MFT through UNLV’s Marriage and Family Therapy program.

I find multiple things valuable about my interdisciplinary studies degree. Being already involved in trans* and gender nonconforming issues when I transferred to UNLV in 2009, I knew I needed a flexible program that would let me pull my interests in psychology, sociology, women’s studies, and anthropology together under one degree. Having an IDS option available allowed me to tailor my classes to fit my passions and interests while still receiving the structure I needed to keep me on a timely graduation path. As an unintended boon, my social science studies focus has given me an edge when it comes to grasping interdisciplinary concepts in my graduate classes.

The most valuable aspect of my degree though is the supportive and encouraging faculty and staff that continued to push me and embrace my ideas, even when I was ready to give up and take the easy path. If not for these wonderful individuals, my IDS degree would be just a piece of paper and two and a half years of school instead of something I will forever be proud of.

Cheryl Johnston

Social Sciences Graduate, Spring 2012 — Cheryl Johnston

I am currently pursuing a master's degree in social work from UNLV. Even in the early stages of my graduate program, it is evident that the undergraduate interdisciplinary studies program has provided me with a solid foundation with which to continue to build my education. Interdisciplinary studies gives me the the tools necessary to combine varied subjects which will culminate in a final project — it is within this process that the methods of research are better understood and a student is more prepared to move forward in a diverse culture of work or higher education. I believe that the IDS program provides an opportunity for a degree that is more functional in our multi-dimensional world.

Erica VanSteenhuyse

Business and Anthropology Graduate, Spring 2012 — Erica VanSteenhuyse

I am currently pursuing a master’s degree in comparative theology at Loyola Marymount University.

Personally, becoming an interdisiplinary studies student was one of the best decisions I made in my academic career. The IDS program allows for more flexibility in class choices; therefore, the student can pick which classes will benefit them more in the future endeavors. For example, I transferred into the IDS program after I decided where and why I wanted to go to graduate school. I made the ultimate decision that I wanted to go to LMU, get my master's degree in comparative theology and eventually become a professor. Before the transfer, I was a business student; I met all of the requirements for the graduate program except for formal classes on religion. Thus, because I became an IDS student with a focus in anthropology as well as business, I was able to take anthropology classes that had a religious base (such as sociology of religion, American buddhism, magic, witchcraft and religion, etc.). This degree format is what allowed me to properly prepare for my unique career path.

This major is not a simple one and should not be used as an "easy way out" of classes. If the IDS program is taken seriously and completed properly, many goals, achievements and knowledge can be obtained. This degree is perfect for those whose ultimate career goals are unique and require a different type of education.