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Why Study Anthropology?

Anthropology is the study of humanity—our biology and behavior, past and present. Anthropologists study living people across cultures and populations; past people through fossil, archeological, and historical records; as well as living and extinct nonhuman primates.

Our students gain holistic, integrative social science training in and out of the classroom. Through research opportunities in the laboratory and field, and individual and group projects, we cultivate in our students:
  • Technical proficiency and teamwork skills 
  • Effective oral and written communication 
  • Deeper understanding of human behavior and biology and the human experience
As a result, Penn State anthropology students develop skills sought by a wide variety of employers and contribute to solving some of the most pressing problems that we face in the world today.

Graduates from Penn State’s Anthropology program excel in diverse professional careers, ranging from law, medicine, and government to business, resource management, non-governmental organizations, and education. 


We are very proud of our graduates! Check out some of their stories below.

Student Spotlight
  • Herman Pontzer

    BA in Anthropology

    Dr. Herman Pontzer earned his BA in Anthropology Penn State in 1999 before going on to his masters and PhD at Harvard University. He is currently an...

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  • Michael Gurven

    BAs in Anthropology and Mathematics

    Dr. Michael Gurven earned BAs in Anthropology and Mathematics from Penn State in 1996 before continuing for his masters and PhD in Anthropology at...

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  • Phoebe Canagarajah

    BA in Anthropology and BS in Biobehavioral Health

    Ms. Phoebe Canagarajah earned her BA in Anthropology and BS in Biobehavioral Health, with a minor in Global Health from Penn State in 2016. Before...

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  • Jill-Lynn Mijares

    BS in Biological Anthropology

    Ms. Jill-Lynn Mijares earned a BS in Biological Anthropology from Penn State in 2016. Before graduating, Jill-Lynn volunteered as a research...

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  • Maria Rossi

    BAs in Anthropology and Business

    Ms. Maria Rossi earned BAs in Anthropology and Business from Penn State in 2012. While at Penn State, Maria volunteered as a research assistant...

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  • Corey Everley

    Majors: Anthropology and History. Minors: French, Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, International Studies and Medieval Studies

    Ms. Corey Everley graduated in 2017 with majors in Anthropology and History, and minors in French, Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies,...

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