Life beyond the Liberal Arts Degree

Life beyond the Liberal Arts Degree

Grafton and Grossman highlight that today many do question the value of a liberal arts education. Realistically we all know that the economic situation today is quite different than it was even a generation ago. Despite the ever changing job market, the level of skills, imparted to students within the humanities, enables them to remain competitive. Attaining a job today takes more than just a degree, it takes having connections and the ability to think critically about the best way to use these connections to your advantage. When you receive your degree from Dickinson, you have the backing of other alumni who are prepared to network and possibly open doors that would not be available to you on your own. They do this because they realize that you have benefited from the same high standards of academic integrity that they themselves received. Years of studying, researching, and analyzing topics have made you a critical thinker with the ability to think outside of the box. This happens to be an essential quality for any profession, imparting far more on you than just a piece of paper. This piece of paper stating your degree from your beloved college is the first step to getting an interview for your potential first job. The incite gained because of that piece of paper walks with you for your entire life because you have been trained to communicate not just what you desire to undertake today, but what you know you will be able to accomplish through strategies and discovering solutions to tomorrow’s problems.

2 thoughts on “Life beyond the Liberal Arts Degree

  1. Good points. In addition to this, the ability to think critically and independently continues to be incredibly important not only in the classroom but also in the post collegiate world for many reasons. One of these reasons pertains to the fact that the ability to think critically, which leads to alternative viewpoints, can help give the employer an extra view point on a subject or a decision that might need to be made. This additional viewpoint can help other people see different points they may or may not have seen. It is incredibly important for the employer to hear this critical independent thinker because that extra voice could help the employer take a step back and make a decision with extra care.

  2. Another reason a liberal arts education is beneficial is that the curriculum emphasizes learning certain skills across disciplines than certain specific information. For example, the critical thinking skills developed in the philosophy, psychology or history major can be applied to non-humanities majors as well. Although certain disciplines teach certain writing styles, a liberal arts education allows a student to become proficient in one writing style but still very successful at adapting to other disciplines’ writing styles. Thus, majoring in one area of the humanities does not preclude one from being very successful in another academic area, even if this new academic area was not something the student had been familiarized with in college. This also allows the student to be capable and experienced when applying to jobs, either with Dickinson alumni or with people outside the Dickinson circle.

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