Dancer in flowing dress

About Arts and Letters

A self-designed major like arts and letters is a great way for students to take control of their education.

The arts and letters program enables students to craft a customized major that incorporates more than one humanities subject. If you feel that your career and life plans would be better served by a broader academic scope than any single major offers, we invite you to craft your own unique program to meet your personal needs and interests.

You can select a primary and secondary concentration from the disciplines of art, art education, communication, dance, design, English, modern and classical languages, music, philosophy, or theater.

Arts and Letters, B.A.

Degree Information

The arts and letters program teaches students to think critically, analyze core beliefs and values, write and present ideas clearly, read comprehensively, and recognize and respect different cultures and modes of expression. These critical skills make graduates valuable employees and valuable members of society, no matter which paths they ultimately pursue. Students who combined disciplines within the humanities have pursued multiple professional positions including:

  • Artist
  • Art Administrator
  • Communication Specialist
  • Dancer
  • Educator
  • Graphic Designer
  • Music Director
  • Television Producer
  • Theater Director
  • Writer


There are countless clubs, events, internships, and scholarships available to arts and letters students across all fields of study. 


Community Access to Art: More than 21 museums, galleries, and art studios are located throughout historic Buffalo.

Creative Expressions Learning Community: This is a residence hall for art majors.

Visual Arts Board: This board is dedicated to uniting Buffalo State’s visual arts community.


Art Partners: Buffalo State students teach and engage Buffalo Public Schools students who have developmental disabilities, learning disabilities, and/or have experienced adverse life circumstances such as poverty.

Art Education Association Student Chapter: This active nationally affiliated group initiates numerous professional development activities that help students polish leadership skills, work with seasoned teachers, and socialize with their peers.

The Czurles-Nelson Gallery: An on-campus gallery dedicated to supporting visual arts at Buffalo State provides a forum for student and faculty creative expression and exhibition space. There are opportunities throughout the year for students to exhibit.


The Record:  Buffalo State’s student-run newspaper provides a venue for students to work as reporters and editors covering all aspects of campus news.

Buffalo Review West: This student blog covers topics related to Buffalo's West Side.

WBNY 91.3FM: The student-operated radio station broadcasts music, news, and sports. Students serve as DJs, news and sports reporters, talk show hosts, and producers.


BSC-TV: The campus television station provides programming to residence halls, classrooms, and offices with a variety of campus news and sporting events, as well as syndicated programs of interest to students.


PRSSA: The Public Relations Society of America’s student chapter holds programming and networking opportunities for students interested in public relations and advertising careers.


The National Honor Society for Dance Arts (NHSDA): The NHSDA Collegiate Program honors the accomplishments of outstanding students in a dance major, minor, or elective program.

The Buffalo State Dance Association: This association provides the chance for all dance students to meet other dancers, work within the community, raise money to benefit dance education, take part in master classes, and host professional events.  


Explore Buffalo Partnership: This is an opportunity for interior design student to explore Buffalo’s unique architectural heritage.

Sienna Study Abroad Program: This program provides chances for students to study in Sienna, Italy, for a semester.

Fashion Students Association: This group unites students with an interest in fashion.


The English Education Student Association: This group, open to both majors and non-majors, provides networking and professional opportunities for students.

Elm Leaves Journal: Buffalo State's historic literature and arts journal provides chances for students serve as the editors.


Multiple language clubs: Students can participate in Spanish and French clubs.

Journey's End Refugee Services: Students can get involved in this community organization, which provides our students with opportunities to teach English to local children.

Study abroad: Students can engage in study abroad experiences in several countries.


Music Forum: This lecture-workshop series on campus explores topics of interest to music majors.

Study abroad opportunities in Ireland, the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, Africa, and beyond.


The Ethics Bowl: This student organization meets weekly to discuss ethical topics and also holds competitions.

The Faculty-Student Colloquia: Each semester, the department hosts a colloquia series to discuss novel concepts, emerging theories, and new ideas. The spirit behind this series is to provide a venue for friendly and focused discussion between students and faculty.

Women in Philosophy (WIP): This campus organization designed to unite female philosophy majors and minors organizes campus symposiums and social gatherings and provides assistance in publishing papers.


Casting Hall Productions: The student-operated theater production company provides students with practical experience in all aspects of the campus theater production, including publicity, costume and set construction, technical staffing, and production management. 

Casting Hall Productions

The Anne Frank Project: Inspired by the wisdom of the Holocaust victim Anne Frank, this annual campus festival uses storytelling as a vehicle for community-building, conflict resolution, and identity exploration.

The Anne Frank Project

Bengal Pause Thursday Performance Series: This platform for theater students to perform short works on Thursdays during the academic year. 

"What I like about the program is the focus on individuality."

Stellar Faculty

Widely respected for their research, publications, exhibitions, and performances in diverse disciplines, they also are known for their nurturing, individualized attention to students’ intellectual development.


Buffalo State is located along the city’s cultural corridor, across the street from the Burchfield Penney Art Center, our campus art museum, as well as the Albright-Knox Art Gallery and the Buffalo History Museum, which provide our students with convenient access to curricular enrichment. The college has established unique partnerships with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, theaters, and art galleries throughout the region.

Burchfield Penney Art Center

Albright-Knox Art Gallery

Buffalo History Museum

Honors Program

Qualifying students can participate in the Muriel A. Howard Honors Program. They engage in special seminars and receive individual attention, are rewarded with scholarships and awards, and receive priority registration for classes.