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About Hofstra

Message from the Dean of Hofstra College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

As dean of Hofstra College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (HCLAS), I am delighted to welcome you to our website.  Our College is the academic home for students, faculty, and staff in over 100 different undergraduate and graduate degree-granting programs, organized into four different schools:  The School of Education, the School of Humanities, Fine and Performing Arts, the Peter S. Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy, and International Affairs, and the School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. 

No matter your academic interest, you will find outstanding faculty and engaged peers in every HCLAS program:  our curricula, in all four schools, are designed to help students learn to analyze the arguments of others – whether those arguments are verbal, scientific, musical, theatrical, or visual – and, ultimately, to construct their own arguments, making their own contributions to education, the arts, humanities, social sciences, or natural sciences and mathematics.

Our learning experience does not end as students exit the classroom, laboratory, dance studio, concert hall, or stage. In fact, learning continues all over campus and beyond, as our students engage in meaningful experiences in the residence halls and student organizations, participating in community-based organizations and events, attending performances and arts exhibits both on Long Island and in New York City.

Indeed, at HCLAS our faculty and staff want our students to explore not only the curricular and co-curricular opportunities on campus, but also the extraordinary opportunities off-campus, such as theater off-Broadway and music at Lincoln Center.  We want our students to contribute to communities both on and off-campus:  we urge you to get involved and find a way that you can make a difference by volunteering.  We want you to engage in student activities, teams, clubs, and organizations to grow your leadership skills in these contexts.  And we want you to study away, participating in internships and/or studying abroad.  All of these opportunities are richly transformative and we know that they will be life-changing for you.  None of these opportunities will fall into your lap, so please talk with your advisor to find the resources on campus that will help you find that special experience that changes YOUR life.

As dean, my most important goal is to foster a spirit of intentionality about the educational experience we provide. As we say at Hofstra, it’s PRIDE and PURPOSE.  I want our students to consider the programs, courses, and experiences we offer, reflect on their own interests and passions, and purposefully embark on the learning opportunities that will best prepare them for life after college.  This means not just the first job out of college, but a life-long career trajectory (which may include a post-graduate degree) and, just as importantly, a meaningful and fulfilling life. And that’s what we all take pride in.

I attend events on campus and hope that you will say hello and share your impressions and aspirations with me so I can learn more about your personal and professional ambitions.

Sincerely,

Benjamin Rifkin, PhD
Dean of Hofstra College of Liberal Arts and Sciences