Why Study Philosophy and Religious Studies?

    Think before you act, and dare to be wise. Gain perspective on the art of living, the right and wrong, and ways to flourish and create the world anew. Ask your questions, hear others, and take a stance. Explore philosophy and religion with us at MMC.

    Why Study Philosophy and Religious Studies at MMC?

    Philosophy and Religious Studies at MMC is an integrated program that introduces you to the depths of the world’s wisdom, but always in light of pressing contemporary concerns. Our program focuses on the thematic exploration of world religions and the global philosophical tradition, grounded in MMC’s unique New York identity. Philosophical inquiry is taken to the streets of NYC; our study of religion happens in the real, sacred spaces of the city. We process our discoveries in small classes and in close connection with deeply committed faculty. It all works together: in the PHIL/RS program, you will explore the diverse range of people’s perspectives, gaining cultural literacy and critical thinking skills that are directed towards ethical reflection and social engagement.

    What You Will Learn

    • Concerns and crises at the heart of the human experience, especially those pertaining to the fundamental nature of reality, knowledge, and values
    • The many ways a diverse range of great thinkers and religious communities have addressed these issues throughout history
    • The nature and function of religion in individual life and human society
    • The distinctive role of global philosophy in promoting critical and ethical thinking and dialogue in relation to the most pressing issues of our time
    • The ability to read and examine complex sources, evaluate arguments, analyze problems, and develop innovative strategies and solutions.


    History, Philosophy, and Religious Studies

    Department Chair
    Bradley Herling




    The concentration in Philosophy builds upon a common foundation in the major curriculum and then focuses on thematic courses in philosophy and significant areas of philosophical dialogue and development.

    Religious Studies

    The concentration in Religious Studies builds upon a common foundation in the major curriculum and then focuses on the range of global religious traditions, with careful focus on the theoretical understanding and framing of our knowledge about these traditions. 

    Program Highlights

    Philosophy and Religious Studies at MMC goes beyond the standard narrative and brings together global philosophical traditions with consideration of pressing, contemporary issues, such as racial injustice, gender and sexuality, and the state of contemporary politics.
    You will get to know your faculty right away: no massive lecture halls and no classes taught by TAs. We know your interests and build the curriculum and classes around them.
    Our curriculum is flexible and open: nearly 3 out of 4 of our students double-major or complete at least one minor. Philosophy and Religious Studies brings perspective, innovation, and critical thinking skills to your studies in other areas.

      The Philosophy and Religious Studies program at MMC is near and dear to my heart. The MMC program provided an excellent foundation in philosophy and gave me a home for four years. I would not be where I am today without the training I received at MMC. I wholeheartedly recommend the philosophy and religious studies program to anyone who wants a rigorous education in philosophy that values personal growth and creativity.

      Christian Kronsted ’14

      Class of 2014, Major in Philosophy

      Ph.D. candidate in Philosophy and Cognitive Science, The University of Memphis

      Meet Christian
    • Kenan Hunter '18 

      The Philosophy and Religious Studies major taught me how to think critically and helped me develop reasoning skills which I use daily working in television. I find that the skills taught are easily transferable to a variety of careers. Further, the faculty were very supportive and instrumental in guiding me towards career development and growth as an individual during my time at Marymount.

      Kenan Hunter ’18

      Class of 2018, Double major in Philosophy and Religious Studies and Digital Media and Video Production

      Meet Kenan
    •    Sabrina Sooknanan '19  

      The best thing I ever did in my academic career was declaring a major in Philosophy. I am proof that the skills you learn in your Philosophy major will be vital and transferable to all industries. Majoring in Philosophy provided me the confidence to ask fundamental questions and encouraged me to dig deeper into human thinking. Following my studies at MMC, I began my Master’s in Media Management at The New School and furthered my work experience in all types of industries (legal, music, non-profit). I remember interviewing for my current position at a tech company and the co-founder asked me about my Philosophy degree. Discussing my critical thinking skills and showcasing my curiosity for the human condition and its relationship to the digital world made me stand out from other candidates. The PHIL/RS department prepared me to look at all sides, develop effective strategy through argumentation, and engage with important issues.

      Sabrina Sooknanan ’19

      Class of 2019, Double major in Philosophy and Religious Studies and Business, Social Entrepreneurship concentration

      Meet Sabrina
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    Careers and Outcomes

    careers and employers

    • Actors, Performers, Artists, and Writers
    • Entertainment, Divorce Law
    • Musician Client Services Management
    • High School and College Teaching
    • Finance and Investment Banking
    • Production Coordination
    • Yoga Instruction/Holistic Therapy, and much more!

    graduate studies

    • Columbia University
    • CUNY Graduate Center
    • George Mason School of Law
    • London School of Economics
    • The New School
    • Princeton University
    • Seton Hall University Law School
    • The University of Chicago
    • Villanova University School of Law

    Philosophy and Religious Studies Alumna Kenan Hunter ’18 Makes Forbes 30 Under 30

    Forbes 30 Under 30 is an annual set of lists issued by Forbes magazine recognizing business and entrepreneurial figures across nearly two dozen industries. According to Forbes, “Hunter boasts extensive experience creating innovative, simple and powerful consumer marketing and digital advertising for TV series, film and streaming services.”

    Learn more about Kenan Hunter

    Start your journey today.

    Learn more about the application process, take a virtual tour, and chat with current students right from the comfort of your home.

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