The Art History/Visual Studies major at Seattle Pacific University is designed to make students canny navigators of our media-saturated environment. In addition to probing the historical origins of our present visual climate, students develop strong research and writing skills and investigate the latest trends in critical theory. The Art History/Visual Studies program at SPU has a Modern and Contemporary focus, and encourages hands-on engagement with mounting, curating and reviewing gallery shows. The philosophical cornerstone of our curriculum is our belief in a common humanity; we look for wisdom in even the most distant past and cultivate sympathy with the strange and unfamiliar. An optional biennial excursion to Rome, Italy, helps students both absorb and critique the foundations of Western culture.