History, Geography, Political Science and Criminal Justice

Academic Department

Activities and Opportunities


The Department administers the Banks-Pierro-Rutland-Bellamy (BPRB) Scholarship Program and is currently working to establish the John W. Blassingame Memorial Scholarship.

The BPRB Scholarships are funded by donations from voluntary payroll deductions from faculty salaries, alumni, and gifts from various other sources. Recipients must be majors in one of the Social Sciences at Fort Valley State University. These disciplines include those in the Department of History, Geography, Political Science, and Criminal Justice, as well as the degree programs offered by the Department of Behavioral Sciences. The awards are made on the basis of academic eminence in the amount of a semester’s tuition.

In addition, the Department is in the process of instituting the Blassingame Memorial Scholarship in honor of the late Yale Scholar, John W. Blassingame, who studied at Fort Valley State University from 1956 to 1960. Once the fundraising for this scholarship is complete, it will follow the same guidelines as the BPRB scholarships.

The Center for Social Science Research

The Department also hosts the Center for Social Science Research which was established with Title III funds in the fall of 1999. The Center provides computerized research tools for faculty and students, and it provides outreach services to local governments in Middle Georgia. More recently it has expanded to include the necessary technology to provide access to Geographic Information Services. This supports the most up-to-date approaches to the study of Geography for students and opens new avenues for faculty research.

Departmental Activities

The Department also administers the annual Banks-Pierro-Rutland-Bellamy Social Sciences Colloquium each April. This academic event convenes scholars and students in the Social Sciences from Southeastern U.S. universities and colleges to present papers and interact professionally. The three best student papers presented at the Colloquium are awarded monetary prizes.

Another event sponsored by the Department in conjunction with the Georgia Humanities Council is the Middle Georgia History Day competition. Middle and high school students present papers, exhibits, documentaries, and performances. Winners in each category advance to the Georgia State History Day.

Student Organizations

Students are encouraged to join professional organizations such as the Georgia Association of Historians, Southern Historical Association, and the National Association for the Study of African American Life and Culture. On campus student organizations include:

  • The Phi Nu Chapter of Phi Alpha Theta International Honor Society in History
  • The Georgia Omicron Chapter of Pi Gamma Mu International Honor Society in Social Science
  • The FVSU History Students Association

Students will also have the opportunity to participate in the annual Banks-Pierro-Rutland-Bellamy Social and Behavioral Sciences Colloquium where they can present their research and participate in the activities of a professional scholarly organization.

The Department also has three clubs for students involved in the offered degree programs.

  • The Political Science Club takes members on field trips, represents the Department in campus activities, and meets to discuss current events.
  • The Criminal Justice Club involves members in the Department’s outreach activities and visits local institutions involved in the practice of criminal justice.
  • For history majors, the department maintains a Historical Society.