The ancient Greeks and Romans left behind more than stone ruins of buildings. Their legacy of discovery and achievement has influenced our world for more than 2,000 years—and continues to shape our culture today. At UB, you'll be part of the only classics department in the SUNY system, where you can dive into history, archaeology, mythology and more as you draw connections between the past and the present.

What will I learn?

How did ancient economies work? What role did women play in Roman society? How did Greek and Latin form the basis for romance languages? These are the types of questions you can ask (and answer) as a classics major. This broad, highly interdisciplinary field lets you explore your interests, including:

  • Archaeology, our physical link to the past.
  • Linguistics, some of the world’s oldest documented languages.
  • Art and literature, how ancient people told stories and expressed emotion.
  • Philosophy, the study of Socrates, Plato and other groundbreaking figures.

What can I do outside of class?

As one student said, "Nothing beats climbing to the top of Trajan's Column or buying a one-Euro pizza in Naples."

Study abroad programs and archaeological expeditions in Italy, Greece and around the world are some of the most popular choices for classics students—but certainly not the only way to do what you love. At UB, you can practice your craft (and build your network) through an internship, join one of our student organizations, explore UB’s artifacts collection and get involved with research.

Study Abroad
Student Clubs

What can I do with a classics degree?

If you want a bright future, start by studying ancient history. 

As a classics student, you’ll learn how these societies (and their culture) are reflected in our modern lives. You'll gain a deeper understanding of cultural nuances and build valuable critical thinking skills. And with a broad base in politics, philosophy, history and other disciplines, you’ll have the timeless knowledge that employers value.

Opportunities include careers in:

  • Academia.
  • Archaeology.
  • Archival work.
  • Art and arts management.
  • Auction house appraisal.
  • Business.
  • Civil service.
  • Communications.
  • Information technology.
  • Law.
  • Library science.
  • Media and journalism.
  • Medicine and health care.
  • Museum curation.
  • Politics.
  • Public relations.
  • Publishing.
  • Teaching.
  • Social work.
  • Theatre and performing arts.
Want to be a teacher?

Be prepared to teach grades 5-12 by getting your bachelor's and master's in just five years through our UB Teach program.

  • Save time and money.
  • No need to apply to graduate school.
  • Be eligible for New York State professional teaching certification.

Visit the department website (at the top of this page) for more details, or see the UB Teach website for a list of all available majors.

Who will I learn from?

Historically speaking (no pun intended), our faculty has been one of the top-rated classics departments in the country. They have included winners of the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching and SUNY Distinguished Professorship, as well as presidents of both the Society for Classical Studies and the Archaeological Institute of America. Our faculty pride themselves on being exceptional teachers and mentors, excited to share their unique experiences and invaluable insight.

At UB, you'll appreciate the small classes and close relationships you can build within our department—with both faculty and students—while still having access to everything a world-class research university has to offer.