United States Air Force Academy

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Humanities Division


Leaders throughout history have used their skills as readers, thinkers and communicators to effect change. Our department is committed to improving the reading, writing and speaking skills of all cadets.

About Us

The Department of English and Fine Arts believes that critical and imaginative thinking and clear, effective communication are the foundations of outstanding leadership, both inside and outside the Air Force.

English & Fine Arts Faculty and Staff

Our cadets engage in literary texts spanning three millennia and numerous cultural traditions. They grapple with some of the most perplexing questions of the human condition: What does it mean to be human? What are the sources of human greatness and human depravity? Why do we yearn, through literature and art, to share our stories with others, and why is it vital to listen to these stories in a complex and interconnected world?

Ultimately, we aim to develop warrior-scholars whose conceptions of leadership are buttressed by wisdom—a wisdom captured and communicated by literature and art. Our department enriches the intellectual experiences of all cadets through a variety of opportunities, including:



When you major in English at the Air Force Academy, you prepare yourself to join a long line of leaders throughout history. Our majors serve as pilots, navigators, missile officers, intelligence officers, maintenance officers, personnel officers, communication officers, and in many other fields. Some receive advanced degrees in English and return to the Academy as faculty members.
Majoring in English also prepares you for life beyond the Air Force. English was the course of study of Michael Eisner, former CEO of the Disney Corporation; General Martin Dempsey, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff; Eric Shinseki, former Secretary of Veteran Affairs; Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas; and many other leaders in every sector of industry and public life.


Kathleen Harrington, Colonel, USAF
Permanent Professor and Head
Department of English & Fine Arts
(719) 333-3930

Ashley Christ, Capt, USAF
Instructor, Deputy for Human Resources
Department of English & Fine Arts
(719) 333-9593

Nicole Jerr, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of English and Advisor-in-Charge
Department of English & Fine Arts

Majors & Minors

English & Fine Arts

Department News News From Around The Department

February 24, 2017

Awards ceremony recognizes revolutionary research of cadets, faculty

By John Van Winkle, U.S. Air Force Academy Public Affairs. Analyzing Nigerian refugee camps to create long-term sustainable solutions, and timely famine response while working in Silicon Valley, was one of three projects earning Cadet 1st Class Saylor Gilbert the top cadet summer research program award, Jan. 26. Gilbert’s work was among cadet and faculty research projects recognized Jan. 26 at the 21st Annual Air Force Academy Research Awards ceremony. Cadets competed for the Thomas. D. Moore Award for outstanding cadet summer research, with four finalists from each academic division of engineering: basic sciences, humanities and social sciences. Gilbert, an...

Continue Reading Awards ceremony recognizes revolutionary research of cadets, faculty

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United States Air Force Academy, CO 80840
(719) 333-3930 | DSN 333-3930