History Major — Aquinas College, Nashville
History students visit exhibit


By its very nature, the discipline of history is intrinsically integrative, and thus furthers the liberal arts mission of Aquinas College. Toward that end, the history major at Aquinas explores a broad sweep of human accomplishments, across geographical space and wide spans of time, while especially concentrating on the United States, western civilization, and the Catholic heritage.

Upon completion of the program, the History graduate will be able to:

  • Identify and critically analyze major periods, events and figures of historical importance;
  • Compare the distinctive conceptions of man and society from different cultures and global regions;
  • Assess historical trends and methods;
  • Perform scholarly historical research;
  • Explain the importance of context in analyzing the past;
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the transcendentals in shaping different civilizations.

For an overview of the program of study, click on BACHELOR OF ARTS IN HISTORY.

Meet the Faculty

Sister John Catherine Kennedy, O.P., Ph.D. Adjunct Assistant Professor in History

Ph.D., The University of Tennessee, Knoxville
M.A., The University of Tennessee, Knoxville
B.A., The Catholic University of America

Sister John Catherine is a member of the Dominican Sisters of Saint Cecilia Congregation. Sister John Catherine is a student of American History, particularly of the nineteenth and early twentieth century U.S. Her doctoral dissertation treated the intersection of Catholicism, race, and education in early twentieth-century Nashville with the founding of Holy Family Parish and Immaculate Mother Academy. Her interests extend to medieval European history as well. Sister John Catherine has taught History, English, and Religion to high school students for years, and currently teaches at St. Cecilia Academy while serving as an Aquinas College adjunct.

Vincent Ryan, Ph.D. Associate Professor of History Director of Student Affairs (615) 297-7545 x443

Ph.D., St. Louis University
M.A., St. Louis University
B.A., University of San Francisco

Dr. Ryan’s teaching and scholarly interests include the Crusades, European civilization, revolutionary movements and their aftermath, the Cold War, and economic history. He is the co-editor of Crusades: Medieval Worlds in Conflict (Ashgate, 2010) and has written a variety of essays and reviews pertaining to the history of the Crusades. At St. Louis University, Dr. Ryan studied under the renowned Crusades historian Dr. Thomas F. Madden.

Sister Jean Marie Warner, O.P. Lecturer in History and Philosophy (615) 297-7545 x373

M.Ed., University of Southern Mississippi
M.A., Catholic University of America
B.A., Notre Dame College

Sister Jean Marie Warner, O.P. is a Dominican Sister of Saint Cecilia Congregation in Nashville, Tennessee. Her research emphasis is in medieval history with a special concentration in medieval political theory. Other research interest areas include Aristotelian and Thomistic concepts of virtue, medieval intellectual history, Dominican history and topics in early modern and modern European history and African history. She also teaches philosophy of education with an emphasis on the Thomistic concept of teaching and learning.

History Program News

  • Joshua Small (History B.S. ’17) teaches History and Physical Education at Youngsville Academy in North Carolina.
  • Christopher J. Carter (History B.A. ’17) graduated from Ave Maria School of Law.
  • Sister Madeline Rose, O.P. and Madeline Embrey presented papers at the Tennessee Regional Conference of Phi Alpha Theta, the History Honor Society, March 30, 2019 at Belmont University.
  • Zachariah Souza (History B.A. ’18) was the recipient of the St. Augustine Award at the 2018 Commencement ceremony.
  • Read more about Special Collections in Tennessee history at the Aquinas Library

Aquinas College welcomes all students regardless of race, color, ethnicity, or national origin who desire to be part of the faith-based mission of the College to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the College. It does not discriminate based on race, color, ethnicity, or national origin in administration of its education policies, admission policies, scholarships and loan programs.

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