History Department


SUNY Cortland’s History Department offers two majors, a minor, and a graduate program. Browse our department webpage to explore options. We have a world-class faculty offering classes ranging from Revolutionary America to Ancient Greece; from Medieval Europe to Modern China; from the Spanish Civil War to Native American History; from World Environmental History to Public History; and dozens more. In our history courses, students don't just study the past---they become historians.

Check out these additional resources on why majoring in history brings a lifetime of opportunity, career choice, and excitement:

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Department News

  • Dr. Laura Gathagan recently traveled to France to present her scholarship...read all about it here and listen to her talk here
  • Welcome to our newest colleague, Dr. Celeste McNamara, an expert in early modern European history! 
  • We are saddened by the death of Dr. William F. Sharp, professor emeritus of history. Dr. Sharp served at SUNY Cortland from 1994 through 2010 as professor of history, specializing in Latin American history. He also served as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs from 1994 to 2001. He will be missed.
  • Why study history at Cortland? To become a great teacher without breaking the bank! SUNY Cortland has been ranked 23rd nationally in best value for teaching degrees.
  • Dr. Laura Gathagan published a new co-edited volume, A Companion to the Abbey of Le Bec in the Central Middle Ages (11th-13th Centuries). She also edited the latest volume of the Haskins Society Journal.
  • Dr. Judith Van Buskirk appeared on the "Ben Franklin's World" podcast to discuss her newest book --- Listen here


Series to Document Czechoslovakia Occupation

The College will screen five historic "Occupation 1968" films Nov. 28 and 29.

Roundtable to Look at College History Timeline

SUNY Cortland's new digital history timeline is the Nov. 1 roundtable topic.

Spy-Turned-Commentator to Speak on Russian Hacking

Cortland native John Sipher worked for the CIA for 28 years.

New Book Tells SUNY Cortland’s Modern History

Our Common Ground is an illustrated history of the last 30 years.

Students Walk to End Hunger on Oct. 21

The 24th annual CROP Hunger Walk will begin with a 1 p.m. registration at Grace and Holy Spirit Church.


The History Club is one of SUNY Cortland’s fastest growing organizations on campus! Its goals are to provide a social setting for developing interests in historical topics and to establish a better relationship between faculty and students.

Read More About History Department Clubs