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What is Constellations?

Constellations is a humanities initiative from the College of Letters & Science. Our mission is to revitalize undergraduate interest in the humanities and curb the decline in humanities enrollment at UW-Madison. We aim to demonstrate the relevance of the humanities to all majors and career trajectories. We want to help students from across the university become more adept at incorporating the skills, knowledge, and insights of the humanities into their studies, career preparation, and lifelong learning.

How does Constellations work?

Constellations is grounded in exceptional humanities classes that revolve around pressing, transdisciplinary questions. Our classes provide a number of high-impact experiences for students regardless of class size including:

  • Workshops related to course content, career preparation, and interdisciplinary skills development
  • Amplified in-class experiences, such as field trips and specialized discussion sections
  • Training and mentorship in writing, including support for the pre-med writing intensive requirement

Beyond our classes, Constellations hosts events, workshops, and provides additional opportunities for undergraduates at all scales, from one-time workshops to extending coursework into research.

Who can take a Constellation?

Constellations are open to all UW Madison undergraduates, but designed with the following populations in mind:

  • Sophomores +
  • STEM students looking for highly complementary humanities credits
  • Students fascinated by big questions!

Our program is particularly appealing for non-humanities majors who want to stay on track with their 4-year plans while getting more out of the classes they take to fulfill their general education requirements.

Why enroll in Constellations?

Good question! Constellations offers students a variety of significant intellectual and practical benefits:

  • Fulfill general education requirements in a rigorous and thoughtful way
  • Earn credits toward a variety of established certificate programs. Constellations provides on-ramps to the following certificate programs:
  • Train in new methodologies.
    • Each Constellation helps students develop intensive research & writing skills.
  • Learn additional skills depending on the Constellations including text analysis, curation, digital storytelling, etc.
  • Develop practical & employable skills.
    • Constellations is dedicated to helping students succeed in their professional lives, regardless of their career paths. Our program is designed to develop the kinds of skills and abilities that employers want from college graduates, such as:
      • Effective, persuasive, and powerful written and spoken communication
      • A capacity to confront and analyze complex problems
      • An appreciation and ability to recognize broader cultural and social contexts
      • Creativity

Need more information?

Please contact Meridith Beck Mink, the Constellations Program Coordinator, with questions!



Room 14A, Ingraham Hall
1155 Observatory Dr.,
Madison, WI 53706