While most University undergraduates complete the majority of their coursework in one of the four undergraduate Schools, the University recognizes the value and benefits of an interdisciplinary approach to education. Combining coursework from two or more of Penn’s Schools allows students to express their academic creativity and to discover new ways of synthesizing information. Many options exist for students who wish to pursue their course of study in more than one School. Fulfilling the requirements of these rigorous programs can be a challenge, and requires significant advance planning, but the rewards are manifold. Penn encourages all undergraduates to consider one of the following options when deciding how best to maximize the University’s resources.
DEPARTMENTAL AND UNIVERSITY MINORS
Although students are not required to complete a minor, students may choose to do so to bring an element of cohesiveness to their electives. Students may complete one or more minors in order to pursue secondary areas of interest, to develop skills and a knowledge base that complements their major, to express themselves in a creative area that is or will likely become a vocation, or to learn more about themselves and/or their heritage. In general, a departmental minor is comprised of half the number of required courses for a major in that department. Students may complete a minor in any School that offers undergraduate minors, regardless of their home School. To find out more about this option, students should contact the department in which they are interested in minoring.
In addition to minors completed within one School of the University, several interdisciplinary minors combine coursework from some combination of the four undergraduate Schools. These are called University Minors, and they include:
The Actuarial Science Department of the Wharton School and the Mathematics Department of the College of Arts and Sciences offer a University minor in Actuarial Mathematics. Actuarial Science stands at the intersection of risk and money. Actuaries are experts in evaluating the likelihood and financial consequences of future events, designing creative ways to reduce the probability of undesirable events, and decreasing the impact of tragic events that do occur. Additional information about a minor in Actuarial Mathematics is available at www.math.upenn.edu/ugrad/actuarial2.html.