Bruce Cole, appeared at the inauguration of the new governor of the State of Mississippi, one of the most deeply conservative states in the union, to state that the humanities speak to "what makes us human: the legacy of our past, the ideas and principles that motivate us, and the eternal questions that we still ponder." When you think about it, he said, this was what the 9-11 bombers were really attacking, and what the brave firemen and policemen who came to the aid of the survivors were defending. As Cole put it, "the values implicit in the study of the humanities are part of why we were attacked on September 11. The free and fearless exchange of ideas, respect for individual conscience, belief in the power of education . . . all these things are anathema to our country's enemies. Understanding and affirming these principles is part of the battle. Today, it is especially urgent that we study American institutions, culture and history. Defending our democracy demands more than successful military campaigns. It also requires an understanding of the ideals, ideas and institutions that have shaped our country."
See full speech here: http://hum21.ku.dk/humanities_in_a_new_millenium/geoffrey_galt_harpham/. .
Missing in the debate is the fact that the modern economy depends on creativity and innovation, which is often generated by tapping into a broad range of knowledge, skills and competencies unavailable in single disciplines. The same goes for individual careers: testimony by leaders in fields ranging from medicine, engineering to technology all suggest that long-term career success depends on a balance or diversity of approaches, including the skills and modes of inquiry taught in the humanities. In other words, market evidence itself demonstrates that general education and the humanities have a crucial role to play in training students for successful careers.
Hunter Rawlings of the AAU puts it like this: "You just don't know what your education is going to result in...". "Many of the kids graduating from college these days are going to hold a number of different jobs in their lives, and many of those jobs have not yet been invented. For a world like that, what's the best education? Seems to me it's a very general education that enables you to think critically."
more here: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/21/opinion/sunday/bruni-questioning-the-missionof-college.html?hp
read more here: http://blogs.wsj.com/atwork/2013/04/10/your-college-major-is-a-minor-issue-employers-say/?mod=e2fb
*thanks to Barbie De Soto for link
Thomas Friedman of the NYT argues that economic growth and long-term employment depend on innovation... that the jobs of the future don't yet exist, they need to be invented. His big point is that American education needs to be reinvented to focus on the skills of innovation and creativity.
If Friedman's general point is important and provocative, he is overly optimistic in his analysis and conclusions. Not everyone can invent their own job via innovation. The imperative in his title therefore seems somewhat flippant. He also does not take into account the
social, cultural and structural differences in his comparison of schooling in the US and Finland. Finally, while innovation often occurs at the intersections of disciplines, it is unlikely that students can "think critically" and imagine pathways to innovation if they haven't first internalized a significant body of knowledge and specific methods of inquiry. Friedman assumes that existing knowledge is available as "facts" via MOOCs or Google; yet what student, without the proper guidance and motivation, is able to make the imaginative leap from facts to invention?
Training in the liberal arts has traditionally served American students well, both as citizens in a free society and as innovators in a free economy. I would argue that innovation depends--paradoxically--not on a break with this educational tradition but on remembering what it is and relearning how to seriously engage its modes of inquiry with the problems and issues of our time.
You'll hear the typical arguments: "Study science and technology.... English and philosophy are a waste of time..." "No, study the liberal arts... value is not defined by return on investment, but by civic engagement," and so on. Both of these positions make some sense. But only by ignoring certain underlying realities. Science and technology can be useful for getting first jobs, but can also be self-limiting without other soft skills. Good jobs in these areas also require graduate training. And, true, English and philosophy degrees are the not the most obvious ticket to entry into the labor market.Yet evidence shows that many students in these majors thrive in the marketplace, especially when judged over the lifetime of a career. They are also excellent preparation for all professional schools, including medicine.
The response most aligned with our hybrid approach of Humanities+/+Humanities is the one by William Pannapacker. He encapsulates his position with the statement: "Don't be the English major who says, 'I'm scared of math and computers.' Don't be a chemistry major who says, 'I never read books." As we have argued repeatedly: humanities and liberal arts degrees are still viable and highly valued; the trick for gaining a toehold in the market, though, is to supplement such degrees with undergraduate research, a foreign language, some training in hard skills and/or internships.
Today's rapidly-changing global economy makes the path to long-term career success highly unpredictable. The market places a premium on flexibility, curiosity, drive and the ability to innovate. What single discipline in college prepares students for such conditions? It's not clear. The best strategy is to combine disciplines and experiences in imaginative ways in order to create your own career pathways.
read more: http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2013/03/24/for-the-college-bound-are-there-any-safe-bets/a-liberal-arts-foundation-for-any-career
"Regular readers of our column know that we are unabashed fans and supporters of the humanities and the creative and performing arts. We believe that the world's thorniest problems will not be solved--nor will our nation be secure--without an understanding of ethics, cultures other than our own, and what it means to be fully human. And we have seen first-hand that students who complete liberal arts degrees have deeply satisfying--and productive--personal and professional lives."
More here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/collegeprose/2012/10/29/does-your-major-matter/
*thanks to Dave Waddell for link
Einstein often made the same point about the process of theorization: "I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world."
One problem is that employers no longer do job training--they expect students to be "job-ready" right out of college.Yet faculty in many liberal arts or humanities colleges do not (or do not want) to see themselves as playing a role in career preparation. Even in cases where they want to help, the way forward is unclear. Combine this with 90% of college students who consider college primarily as job training and you begin to see a deepening crisis for everyone involved.
Where does this disconnect come from? What are the solutions? See article here:
Our approach to these challenges in the Humanities College at BYU has been to:
1) Encourage students to balance their education between technical/vocational and humanities disciplines. A hybrid approach--what Phil Gardner calls "a technically savvy liberal arts major or a liberally trained technical major"--is now what the market requires. Make this known to students, faculty and advisors across campus. Often we confine students to our own academic silos.
2) Focus on advising as the ground zero for messaging about how to bridge academics and careers.
3) Strongly encourage or require professionally-relevant experiences, such as undergraduate research or internships. All the evidence points to the internship as the deciding factor. But make sure it's the right kind of internship and of sufficient duration to be meaningful.
4) Run advising workshops that teach students how to discuss the relation between academic study and internship experiences in ways that resonate with future employers.
This article effectively pushes back against the conventional bromides and misinformation about the relation between the humanities and (lack of) employment opportunity. What it does not say is that the market evidence shows that (1) employers want a combination of technical and liberal arts training and (2) humanities majors or technical majors with humanities exposure tend to climb in organizations at a faster rate than purely technical majors over the lifetime of a career.
From the Harvard Medical School Website:
Demonstrate aptitude in the biological and physical sciences during their undergraduate years, but not to the exclusion of the humanities and social sciences.(A study at Harvard Medical School has shown that students are successful in their medical studies regardless of undergraduate concentration, providing that they have had adequate science preparation. Students are urged to strive for a balanced and liberal education rather than specialized training. No preference is given to applicants who have majored in the sciences over those who have majored in the humanities.)
*thanks to Kerry Soper for the link
Excerpt: "The tension between a market model and a Socratic model was nicely captured by two statements Spar made in succession. The first warmed my heart: "We want to teach students things they don't want to know." That is, rather than regarding students as consumers (all the rage these days in places like England and Texas), we should regard them as yet-to-be-formed intellects who are often best served by saying no to their desires -- as we have traditionally. But then Spar immediately added, "Yet, we can't be too removed from the marketplace."
This tension in Spar's thinking between practicality and idealism may seem somewhat schizophrenic, but it is not unhealthy. In fact, it captures precisely what labor researcher Phil Gardner at Michigan State University claims the labor market is looking for (and will increasingly be looking for in the future): either technically trained liberal arts majors or liberally trained majors of technical disciplines. In other words, it's not one or the other that is required for long-term success, it is both.
More here: http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/12/10/higher-educations-future-discuss/?hp
"The people who will succeed in more expensive labor markets like the U.S. will be those who can think creatively and generate the IDEAS that will propel economic growth. Such skills are best fostered in a traditional liberal arts environment.... If you teach students one trade, that skill might be obsolete in a few years. But if you teach people how to think and look at lots of information and connect dots - all skills that a classic liberal education gives you - you will thrive."
This doesn't mean that students should avoid learning technical skills. The best path forward is a hybrid of liberal and technical learning.
More here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/vivekranadive/2012/11/13/a-liberal-arts-degree-is-more-valuable-than-learning-any-trade/?utm_campaign=techtwittersf&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social
Read more here: http://www.usatoday.com/news/education/story/2012-01-24/liberal-arts-education-graduates/52779652/1
More here: http://chronicle.com/article/A-Meeting-of-Minds-on-How-to/131252/
*thanks to Cory Leonard for the link
See more here: http://newsweek.tumblr.com/post/21784902381/the-13-most-useful-college-majors-as-determined-by
*thanks to Corry Cropper for link
Susan Crown, Henry Crown and Co. Investment Firm (qtd. in Victor E. Ferrall, Jr., Liberal Arts at the Brink, p. 19)
As you know, just 3 percent of American college graduates are educated at a residential liberal arts college. Yet the alumni of liberal arts institutions account for almost 20 percent of all U.S. presidents. Roughly 20 percent of Pulitzer Prize winners from 1960 to 1998 in drama, history, and poetry earned their baccalaureate degrees at liberal arts colleges and universities.
On a per capita basis, liberal arts colleges today produce nearly twice as many doctorates in science as other institutions. And by some estimates, about one in 12 of the nation's wealthiest CEOs graduated from a liberal arts institution.
At the same time, many of the key instructional breakthroughs in higher education--the freshman seminar, single-course intensive study terms, honors programs, and senior theses--were all first pioneered at liberal arts colleges. It is telling that in China--where officials are frustrated by the nation's comparative lack of Nobel prizes and innovation among university graduates--has now opened its first liberal arts college."
The obvious question that this record prompts, is, why have the graduates of liberal arts colleges flourished? The answers are several--but all of them highlight the continued importance of the liberal arts model.
"Liberal education is about cultivating in students a set of capacities and talents, rather than preparing them for a particular profession or imparting to them a particular body of knowledge or set of discrete skills. I think liberal education develops a person's capacities like nothing else.
[...] To help students cultivate humane instincts, to develop creative and disciplined minds for lives of leadership and service - I don't think that's a given at liberal arts colleges, so it's the combination of those things that makes for a compelling education and a compelling community.
education is always going to be expensive. It's highly selective. It's
labor intensive, and it's never going to be generally available in any
society. It costs too much. So if you're going to make the case for it,
you have to make the case that somehow the existence of those
institutions disproportionately benefits the community."
Scholarships & Fellowship Opportunities► Alpha Kappa Alpha Merit Scholarship: Offers $750-$2,500 to undergraduate and graduate students who are excelling academically. Deadline: April 15, 2012
► DAAD: German Studies Research Grant (DAAD):
The DAAD offers the opportunity for undergraduates and graduates to
study abroad in Germany. At least two years of college German, or the
equivalent, are required. Deadline: May 1, 2012
► Mitchell Scholarship: The Mitchell Scholarship funds graduate study or a second bachelor degree at any university in Ireland or Northern Ireland. July 1, 2012
► Marshall Scholarship: The Marshall Scholarship funds graduate study or a second bachelor degree at any university in the United Kingdom.July 1, 2012
► Rhodes Scholarship: The Rhodes Scholarship funds two years of graduate study at the University of Oxford. July 1, 2012
Recent college graduates who as seniors scored highest on a standardized test to measure how well they think, reason and write -- skills most associated with a liberal arts education -- were far more likely to be better off financially than those who scored lowest, says the survey, released Wednesday by the Social Science Research Council, an independent organization.
It found that students who had mastered the ability to think critically, reason analytically and write effectively by their senior year were:
•Three times less likely to be unemployed than those who hadn't (3.1% vs. 9.6%).
A survey of 925 young adults who graduated college during the economic recession, offers a snapshot of how they were faring two years later:
74% were receiving financial help from parents
65% had student loans, owing an average $27,200
46% owed an average $1,880 on credit-card debt
22% had "moved back home" with their parents or relatives
9% had student loan debt averaging more than $50,00
Source: Social Science Research Council
•Half as likely to be living with their parents (18% vs. 35%).
•Far less likely to have amassed credit card debt (37% vs. 51%).
"The biggest complaint: The undergraduate degrees focus too much on the nuts and bolts of finance and accounting and don't develop enough critical thinking and problem-solving skills through long essays, in-class debates and other hallmarks of liberal-arts courses.
Companies say they need flexible thinkers with innovative ideas and a broad knowledge base derived from exposure to multiple disciplines. And while most recruiters don't outright avoid business majors, companies in consulting, technology and even finance say they're looking for candidates with a broader academic background."
The student answers: "Your
company will teach me the industry. My degree
taught me to learn, analyze, and think through complex issues. It's
also taught me to communicate effectively through writing and speech.
That's what I'll bring to your company."
The manager stated that he was very skeptical, and not sure why he was interviewing an English major. The student's answer, however, sealed the deal. He was the only non-business major among the applicants.
This was reported by a BYU English major who just landed his first job in supply chain management...
It helps to know that the student enhanced his degree with internship experiences. He also learned from our crack advisors how to discuss his humanities training in ways that employers find valuable.
"What makes the American college experience valuable--and how can we preserve it? Andrew Delbanco, director of American studies at Columbia University, wrestles with those questions in his new book, College: What It Was, Is, and Should Be. He spoke with us about why liberal education is a principle worth fighting for and how colleges can lead the charge."
Listen here: http://chronicle.com/blogs/afterword/2012/04/03/why-college-matters%E2%80%94and-why-its-in-peril/
For students who hope to gain the most career impact from study abroad, results indicate that they should choose an internship as part of their curriculum. Remarkably, 70 percent of intern respondents reported that study abroad ignited interest in a career direction pursued after the experience, compared to 60 percent of non-intern respondents. In addition, 83 percent said that it allowed them to acquire skill sets that influenced their career path, compared to 75 percent who did not intern.
Although there is not always a significant statistical difference between students who attended local university classes and those who did not, it is important to mention that students who attended courses at the local university did experience greater long-term language benefits and were more likely to work or volunteer abroad than their counterparts. The biggest difference between the two groups is in the area of relationships. Of those who attended local university classes, 31 percent still maintain contact with host-country friends, compared to 16 percent of respondents who did not study at the local university.
more here: http://www.transitionsabroad.com/publications/magazine/0403/benefits_study_abroad.shtml
At Canadian universities, business schools are light-years ahead of the rest of the campus in raising their global profile.
Intensive foreign-student-recruitment efforts, friendly Canadian immigration rules, mandatory study-abroad requirements, and, in some cases, the option to pursue programs in multiple languages have combined to pack a punch in recent years.
"We also need to make clear that in promoting the humanities, we are not deriding the sciences or encouraging trade-offs between the two. For the health of our society, we need to train minds that have learned plural disciplines and can move freely among them. Our colleagues in China and Singapore are trying to figure out the mysterious secret of liberal arts education, the broad-based, integrative training spanning the arts and sciences which they see as producing America's adaptive, inventive kind of leader. It will be ironic if we fail to nourish and protect this asset just when others are recognizing its value.To develop fully, skills in language, the arts and social inquiry must start being built at early ages, then broadened and deepened in further stages of schooling. Too often, the segments of this educational pathway are quite detached from each other, with fragmenting results at best."
More here: http://today.duke.edu/2012/03/humanitiestalk
"In fact, students who are exposed to more modern methods of history education--where critical thinking and research are emphasized--tend to perform better in math and science. As a case in point, students who participate in National History Day--actually a year-long program that gets students in grades 6-12 doing historical research--consistently outperform their peers on state standardized tests, not only in social studies but in science and math as well.
In my position as CEO of a firm employing over 80,000 engineers, I can testify that most were excellent engineers--but the factor that most distinguished those who advanced in the organization was the ability to think broadly and read and write clearly."
The first, most practical defense is that the liberal arts (and sciences) are the best possible preparation for success in the learned professions--law, medicine, teaching--as well as in the less traditionally learned but increasingly arcane professions of business, finance, and high-tech innovation.
It's insurance against obsolescence; in any rapidly changing field (and every field is changing rapidly these days), if you only focus on learning specific materials that are pertinent in 2012, rather than learning about them in a broader context, you will soon find that your training will have become valueless. Most important, with a liberal education you will have learned how to learn, so that you will be able to do research to answer questions in your field that will come up years from now, questions that nobody could even have envisioned in 2012, much less taught you how to answer.
more here: http://chronicle.com/article/The-Liberal-Arts-as-Guideposts/130475/
read here: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/29/opinion/sunday/friedman-made-in-the-world.html?hp
One of the best choices you can make when planning your college years is the decision to learn a foreign language, whatever your major. Learning another language will open the door to another culture and enhance your career opportunities in the increasingly global economy. Having strong skills in another language may give you an edge when applying for a job. That unique ability will set you apart from other applicants and show a potential employer that you have demonstrated long-term discipline in acquiring specialized knowledge.
more here: http://schoolsofthought.blogs.cnn.com/2012/01/05/my-view-why-language-study-should-be-part-of-your-college-experience/
Read here about the serious problems with these assumptions and how and why the market values skills learned in Art History:
Their survey of the types of communicative and thinking skills valued by the modern marketplace holds out promise for humanities grads. They also highlight innovative programs around the country, including BYU's Humanities+ initiatives, that are helping students bridge humanities coursework with career opportunity.
See here: http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2012/01/05/essay-new-approach-defend-value-humanities
The National Language Service Corps, NLSC, is a group of individuals like you, who can speak, listen and understand English and other languages. These individuals (known as "NLSC Members") make themselves available to help others in times of emergency or crisis wherever that may be. They have the opportunity to help their neighbors and fellow citizens by participating in national and state efforts when their expertise can truly make a difference. Our Members can be called upon in time of need to use their interpreting and translating skills to help others in the United States and around the world during short-term assignments.
Our Members have participated in assignments in places ranging from Atlanta, Thailand and Indonesia and some have been able to help from their own homes.
Somewhere there are people who need help, in their language. Be one who offers that
help. Use your language skills to bridge the divide between cultures. Do you speak
more than one language? Then consider applying for membership!
more here: http://www.nlscorps.org/
The UNDP International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth (IPC-IG) offers internships to graduate students in Brazil in the following areas: Communications, Outreach and
The Virtual Student Foreign Service (VSFS), a part of a growing effort by the State Department to harness technology and a commitment to global service among young people to facilitate new forms of diplomatic engagement, is piloting a program through the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) to offer students from Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) the opportunity to serve as virtual (eInterns) for U.S. diplomatic posts in the Americas and offices in the Western Hemisphere Affairs Bureau. Working from college and university campuses in the United States and throughout the world, eInterns (American students working virtually) are partnered with our U.S. diplomatic posts overseas and State Department domestic offices to conduct digital diplomacy that reflects the realities of our networked world. VSFS eInternships are unpaid and applications are rolling.
Harry S. Truman Scholarship
Are you a junior planning on working in civil or public service? The Truman scholarship funds $30,000 for senior year and graduate school for students who have plans to work in a broadly defined public service capacity. Deadline: December 2, 2011.
National Security Education Program (NSEP) Boren Awards
The NSEP offers undergraduate and graduate awards of $4,000-$30,000 for study abroad in areas that are critical to U.S. security interests: Africa, Asia, Eastern & Central Europe, Middle East, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Deadline: January 2012 (TBA).
Institute for Humane Studies (IHS) Fellowship
This fellowship provides $12,000 for students who have clearly demonstrated research interest in the intellectual and institutional foundations of a free society. Available for juniors, seniors, and graduate students. Deadline: January 3, 2012 (deadlines vary according to graduate institution and discipline).
James Madison Scholarship
This fellowship offers secondary level teachers of history and government up to $24,000 to complete a master's degree in history, political science, ,or related fields. After earning the degree, fellows are obligated to teach grades 7-12 for one year for each full year of study under the fellowship. Deadline: March 1, 2012.
- Office of Communications
- Office of Publications
- Division of Education Programs
- Division of Preservation and Access
- Office of the General Counsel
See NEH application instructions here: http://www.neh.gov/whoweare/NEH_Internships.html
Washington Seminar Website: http://washingtonseminar.byu.edu/pages/default.aspx
In addition to the NEH, check these possibilities:
- National Gallery of Art
- Internships at the John K. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
- Internships at the Smithsonian Institution
- Monster.com Federal Internships
- Opportunities in Public Affairs - Internships on Capitol Hill
For financial assistance call your department's internship coordinator or Dave Waddell in the College of Humanities Advising Center.
President Michael T. Benson of Southern Utah University argues for the economic and civilizational necessity of training today's youth in the liberal arts, and he does this in an economic and cultural climate increasingly hostile to the humanities and other disciplines whose immediate monetary value is not obvious.
Here are his key points:
"Difficult economic times such as we are in certainly require job and skill training that can result in immediate employment, to be sure. Nonetheless, to argue that Utah students enrolled in more traditional liberal arts programs have nothing to offer in terms of applicable job skills for the real world reveals an alarming ignorance of the irreplaceable value of a liberal education."
"At its core, LEAP (Liberal Education and America's Promise) states and institutions are committed to producing graduates with the portable skills necessary to ensure success in today's uber-competitive global environment: knowledge of human cultures and the physical and natural world; intellectual and practical skills; personal and social responsibility; and integrative and applied learning."
A recent article from the Economist challenges these myths... from an economic point of view. The author points to facts often overlooked in conventional analyses of productivity. He also reminds us of the enriching experiences and finer pleasures available in advanced societies--experiences and pleasures that are directly tied to the flourishing of the humanities.
What is economic growth for, anyway? It's for expanding our choices and making life better. Is it really so surprising that, as we grow wealthier as a society, more and more of our young people, when the amazing resources of the modern university are put at their disposal, choose to use them learning something satisfying and enriching and not for anything except cherishing the rest of their lives? Is it really so surprising that taxpayers are not in revolt over the existence of poetry professors?
As we grow wealthier as a society, we also devote ever more money and time listening to music, attending performances, reading books, watching film and TV. Somebody has to make this stuff, and I'm certain its full value is not captured in the economists' growth stats. I spent last evening reading a fine Pulitzer prize-winning novel by a graduate of a state-university creative-writing program. I appreciate everything math majors do for us. I really do. But, as far as I know, a math major has never made me cry.
read more: http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2011/11/education-and-economics
(thanks to Marc Olivier for the link)
Is this you?
When I ask students on campus about this observation, many agree. They find the news boring or disturbing, they don't have time (but I'm guessing they have time for Facebook), they don't like politics, they don't see the connections to their life, and so on.
The most lofty goal for staying abreast of world events is to become an informed citizen in a democratic society. When you go to vote and you know little about the underlying economic and socio-political forces driving current events, on what basis do you decide?
A more down to earth, but interrelated, reason is that many employers--from government agencies to business--require their hirees to be informed about current events. It's not enough to speak a foreign language, to live abroad or to scan Yahoo headlines; to impress top-shelf employers, you need to be able to demonstrate global awareness and to develop a well-reasoned analysis of issues that matter in the real world. The best way to get started is to regularly consult major newspapers and weeklies (NYT, Wash Post, LA Times, Newsweek, New Republic). At a recent conference on higher education, business people and educators pointed to The Economist as an ideal source of weekly analysis. It's an intelligent, brief and extremely well-written magazine with academic discounts for students. I quote from a CEO of an international company: "If students would just read the Economist every week they'd be ahead of the game."
Even better for BYU students: if you know a foreign language, use your competitive advantage and read major papers and political magazines from your language area.
If you're not reading the news, start today.
read here: http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2011/10/michael_m_crow_president_of_arizona_state_university_explains_wh.html
See here: http://www.avso.org/links/avsolinks_avso.html
Steve Jobs perhaps explains best why passion, or "loving what you do" is so crucial for a long and successful career:
See also this NYT piece on how Jobs channeled his passion for culture and style into product development:
Could it be that a purely practical approach to education is all wrong?
If we take Steve Jobs as an example, the answer is clearly "yes". Jobs is "great" not simply because of his technical education but because he was an innovator. He was able to imagine the technological products and services people would desire before they existed. How was he able to do this?
A new book, The Innovator's DNA, studies successful CEO's and cites five common traits of innovative behavior: questioning, experimenting, observing, associating and networking, which they claim must be coupled with a "ceaseless curiosity and willingness to take risks." Breakthrough ideas, they argue, do not come from purely disciplinary or linear thinking, they are fueled by diverse experiences and ways of thinking, i.e., the kind of experiences and thinking that come from intellectual exploration and not from blind focus on one simple goal (studying one discipline, quick graduation, making money, acquiring trophies of success, etc.).
This information on innovative behavior could, of course, easily evolve into a new kind of check-list in students' hands. Jobs himself has a better idea: open your mind... study the liberal arts. Jobs: "The reason that Apple is able to create products like iPad is because we always try to be at the intersection of technology and liberal arts, to be able to get the best of both."
Read more on Jobs and The Innovator's DNA here: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/28/technology/steve-jobs-and-the-rewards-of-risk-taking.html?hp
Read more on Steve Jobs and the Humanities in an earlier H+ post here: http://humanitiesplus.byu.edu/2010/01/steve-jobs-touts-liberal-arts.html
A program of United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program offers intensive summer language institutes overseas in thirteen critical need foreign languages.
Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) institutes provide fully-funded group-based intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences for seven to ten weeks for U.S. citizen undergraduate, Master's and Ph.D. students.
• Arabic, Persian: Advanced beginning, intermediate or advanced level;
• Azerbaijani, Bangla/Bengali, Hindi, Indonesian, Korean, Punjabi, Turkish, Urdu: Beginning, intermediate or advanced level;
• Chinese, Japanese, Russian: Intermediate or advanced level.
Countries may include: Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, China, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Japan, Jordan, Morocco, Oman, Russia, South Korea, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkey, or others where the target languages are spoken.
If this interests you, act soon. More details here: http://www.clscholarship.org/
Consider these two facts:
1. 40% of all Yale students graduate in a humanities/social science discipline.
2. Among the Stanford Business School's MBA graduates of 2011, 47% majored as an undergraduate in either the humanities or a social science.
What's going on here? What secret about the humanities are these Yale and Stanford students in on? Why would they spend so
much money and energy on so-called "useless" disciplines that many people in the media say "lead to nowhere"?
What's going on here? What secret about the humanities are these Yale and Stanford students in on? Why would they spend so much money and energy on so-called "useless" disciplines that many people in the media say "lead to nowhere"?
To understand this conundrum and to avoid making an inappropriate career choice based on popular mythology, make sure to understand what you want out of life and to take the proper, evidenced-based steps to get there. You might be surprised to discover that you can follow your passion and make a good living.
To understand this conundrum and to avoid making an inappropriate career choice based on popular mythology, make sure to understand what you want out of life and to take the proper, evidenced-based steps to get there. You might be surprised to discover that you can follow your passion and make a good living.
*Thanks to Ed Cutler for the link.
*Thanks to Ed Cutler for the link.
CNN recently ran a story by Michael Roth on why study of the Liberal Arts is crucial for the future of our nation. Here is an excerpt:
"In recent years university leaders in Asia, the Mideast and even Europe have sought to organize curricula more like those of our liberal art schools. How, they want to know, can we combine rigorous expectations of learning with the development of critical thinking and creativity that are the hallmarks of the best American colleges?
in our own land we are running away from the promise of liberal
education. We are frightened by economic competition, and many seem to
have lost confidence in our ability to draw from the resources of a
broadly based education. Instead, they hope that technical training or
professional expertise on their own will somehow invigorate our culture
more here: http://articles.cnn.com/2011-05-21/opinion/roth.liberal.education_1_liberal-arts-sciences-colleges?_s=PM:OPINION
"When PayScale conducted its latest annual survey of starting and mid-career salaries for college grads in dozens of college majors, business came in as the 60th best-paying college degree. It fared worse than such supposedly impractical degrees as history, political science and philosophy."
In an article in the New Republic (December 13, 2010), John McWhorter argues for dramatic changes to university language study while brushing aside concerns over the recent closures of the French, German and Italian departments around the country. The shuttering of these units is merely a sign of the times, affirms McWhorter, as the new global economy displaces Europe's--and especially France's--former cultural centrality. In tough budgetary times, strategic choices must be made. And the obvious choice, according to McWhorter, is Chinese or Arabic.
Does anybody disagree that Chinese and Arabic are crucially important languages? The question is: why does McWhorter pit them in a zero-sum game with German or French? There may be good arguments to do so, but McWhorter does not make them. His reasoning goes like this: Chinese is "happening" while French is merely a residual marker of class distinction; Chinese is useful for business whereas French is good for the "educated person [who] is supposed to be able to at least fake a conversation in French," Nietzsche and Stendhal are, indeed, interesting, but why learn German or French when such texts are already available in English translation?
For McWhorter, the idea that an "educated" person learns French or German is a relic of the past. Things could have been different, and, in fact, would be different, if we could choose all over again: "I [...] have a deep-seated sense that the driver's seat in a car should be on the left side. It's all I've known, but hardly the choice all humans would make if designing a car from scratch with no cultural preconceptions."
It's hard to tell if this is an argument or a provocation. Is comparing choice of language study to car design a useful analogy? First of all, we're not talking about all humans deciding on one language; nor are we talking about a parallel world where language choice is divorced from historical and cultural experience. We're talking about American language learners who have long considered themselves historically and culturally tied to Europe and who want to strengthen these ties via language study. The original choice to study French and German (and Italian and Latin, etc.) was thus not an arbitrary and purely technical decision. It was one animated by a desire to participate in the cultural transmission Europe's humanistic traditions that define us. Is it possible to imagine the serious study of language outside of a "cultural preconception"? Isn't the very idea of language transmission tied to cultural transmission?
The answer is, of course, 'yes'--which explains why McWhorter doesn't really argue his point against European languages; he relies on the observations of a fictional "Martian" to make it for him: "A Martian would be baffled as to why anyone would think of French, German or Italian as more important for young Americans to learn than Chinese." Or he relies on the fiction of pure chance: "If the dice were rolled again, [Europe] might not even be considered a continent."
The idea here is clear: Europe is no longer important, and our attachment to European languages has outlasted its utility. Linguistic "importance" should now be based on strategic importance and economic benefit.
However, even if we concede this last point, McWhorter's Martian would be mistaken: the European Union is by far the US's largest trading partner, and both Germany and France figure in the top 10. Canada, our closest neighbor and second largest trading partner, is also partially francophone. And in terms of strategic importance, Europe, Canada and US are all members of NATO, struggling to share a historical destiny. It's unclear, given these facts, why we should so quickly turn our backs on European language and culture. Can't we admit that there's more at stake here than being able to "fake a conversation"?
The real argument for defending the study of European languages in American universities, however, is neither utilitarian nor strategic. It is the argument that McWhorter wants to deny: that European languages link us to the liberal arts or humanistic heritage out of which American political and cultural traditions emerged. In order to maintain these fragile traditions in an increasingly hostile economic climate, it is imperative that we avoid caving into purely market or strategic justifications for curricular decisions. Most college students already view their college experience as purely instrumental; it is our job to help as many students as we can see beyond this limited point of view.
The U.S. Department of State's 2011 Fall Student Internship Program has openings.
Click here (http://careers.state.gov/students/programs, and click on Student Internships under Undergraduate or Graduate/Post-Graduate) for more information, and to start the Gateway to State online application process via USAJobs.
Please note that the deadline to submit completed applications is March 01, 2011.
You must be a U.S. Citizen and a student (a full- or part-time continuing college or university junior, or graduate student - including graduating seniors intending to go on to graduate school) to be eligible. Please read the program description and vacancy announcement for more information and all qualification requirements.
We appreciate your interest in a career with the U.S. Department of State.
U.S. citizenship is required. An equal opportunity employer.
Financial support for student research in the humanities. Two fellowships--one for undergraduate students and one for graduate students--are offered in the spring to support student research in the humanities. The maximum student fellowship award in $500. Fellowship funds may be used to pay the costs of equipment, supplies, software, technical support, or travel to do research or to report on the results of research at a professional conference. Contact Maria Torres 801-359-9670 x105. Application deadline: March 1
Financial support for student research in the humanities.
Two fellowships--one for undergraduate students and one for graduate students--are offered in the spring to support student research in the humanities. The maximum student fellowship award in $500. Fellowship funds may be used to pay the costs of equipment, supplies, software, technical support, or travel to do research or to report on the results of research at a professional conference. Contact Maria Torres 801-359-9670 x105.
Application deadline: March 1
INTERNSHIP OPPORTUNITY IN THE VISUAL ARTS DEPARTMENT
The internship at the Visual Arts department of the French Cultural Services offers the opportunity to work on interdisciplinary visual arts contemporary projects, in collaboration with both America and French institutions and galleries.
Position is available immediately
3, 6 or 9 months
Mostly participate in the follow-up and process of the French-American grant program for contemporary art, along with the curatorial program - http://www.facecouncil.org/ - by helping in processing applications for the grant deadlines before they are submitted to a selection committee of professionals.
Keep the weekly art events calendar up-to-date
Write newsletters or blasts if needed
Detail-orientated and ability to multi-task
Good communication skills (the work requires substantial
communication, written and otherwise)
Interest in French and Francophone art in general
French Language a plus
Internships are non-paid positions, although school credit can be arranged. Candidates are required to commit to a minimum of 10 weeks for a minimum of 20 hours per week (maximum duration: 6 months).
Please send a cover letter, resume and short writing sample as well as contact information for two references by e-mail with the subject line "French Embassy 2010 Internship" to:firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
All documents should be sent in Word or PDF file format.
Incomplete applications will not be considered.
Due to the large volume of applications we receive, we are only able to contact those candidates selected for an interview.
A global perspective is needed to succeed in the 21st century and the humanities is essential to attaining a global perspective," said Carol Christ, president of Smith College, in an interview with The Korea Herald on Thursday. "The world today requires globally educated executives who understand another culture," she said.
We live in an extremely materialistic, entitled and increasingly self-centered world. Americans often seem too willing to short-circuit their education and the proper development of their minds, sensibilities and morals because they see life simply as a race to the money and to personal glory.
The author of this article reminds us that the liberal arts should play a central role in the academic experience in order to gain a broad perspective on humanity, a sense of humility, and perhaps the wisdom to live a rich and meaningful life in the pursuit of good.
Yet the secret to the good life, the core value that is at the core of our university's mission, I tell them, "is to help you realize, deep in your hearts, that it is not all about you. This experience is all about you realizing that it's not all about you.
The Quality education is the nurturing and development of curiosity, creativity, critical thinking, problem-solving, wisdom, ethical sensibility, and judgment. Quality education mediates between what's in the books and what's on the streets, between cosmic theory and common sense. Quality education instills the humility and grace to know that you don't know it all.
More than ever, the world needs students educated in the liberal tradition. A liberal education helps the student to transcend generations. As T.S. Eliot wrote: "It is in fact part of the function of education to help us escape, not from our time -- for we are bound by that -- but from the intellectual and emotional limitations of our time."
A liberal education helps the student navigate a world of religious, political, and cultural diversity, a world that seems to spin ever faster and faster on its axis, accelerated by changes in science and technology that seem to move at the speed of light.
The "liberal" in liberal education is not about politics, but rather mind and soul, a broad-based exposure to a multiplicity of academic disciplines, an emphasis on open-minded critical inquiry and creative problem-solving, an understanding that there is nobility in approaching education not as the filling of a résumé but the fulfilling of life.
It's no secret: graduating seniors are facing one of the toughest job markets in decades. Overall hiring plunged dramatically during 2009/10, with American companies reducing their hiring targets by 35-40%.
What does this mean for humanities students? It is not as bleak as it might appear.
The Michigan State report also claims that employers want above all flexibility. "They seek candidates across all majors who can slide into a number of positions as needed or can adapt quickly to changing conditions. Their focus is on candidates with a mix of technical aptitude and essential soft skills."
It goes on:
"Over 600 companies indicated that they would consider any graduate for a position; at 33% of respondents, this figure is at a historic high. These companies will be hiring approximately 26 individuals per company, an increase of 6%.
See the entire report here: http://ceri.msu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/RT20092010.pdf
The Humanities and Medicine Program at the Mount Sinai medical school in New York accepts about 35 undergraduates a year from humanities and social science disciplines--even if they have never taken any 'hard' science courses!
The school has found that such students are able to catch up on the science but that they add this much desired dimension: a sense of mission, a broad humanistic vision and the interpersonal skills to become better healers.
What this says to me is that a humanities major who engages in Humanities+ and who does a minor in a scientific discipline or who completes the prerequisites for medical school probably has an equal or better chance of getting into an excellent medical school than the straight-on science major or 'tech geek'.
What it also suggests is that the traditional 'science-only' majors who wish to become doctors could improve their chances with top schools (and of becoming better healers) by taking rigorous coursework in the humanities disciplines--a strategy that we in our College are calling +Humanities.
Read more in today's NYT: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/30/nyregion/30medschools.html?h
The State Dept is accepting applications for the 2010 Diplomacy Fellows Program.
Click here (http://careers.state.gov/officer/fellows-program.html) for more information, and to start the application process. Please note that the deadline to submit completed applications is July 31, 2010.
General Qualifications for the DFP Program:
- You must be a U.S. citizen.
- You must be at least 20 and not more than 59 at the time of application.
- You must be available for worldwide assignment.
- You may not have been separated from the Foreign Service under certain sections of the Foreign Service Act.
- You must have participated in one of the 9 eligible Fellowship programs (please (click here to view the list) and you must have successfully completed all program requirements and received your master's degree within 5 years of the vacancy announcement closing date.
Please read the entire vacancy announcement for details about qualifications, evaluations and requirements.
We appreciate your interest in a career with the U.S. Department of State.
Your resume should answer one key question.
The vast majority of resumes I see read like a series of job descriptions, listing duties and responsibilities at each position the job applicant has held. But resumes that stand out do something very different. For each position, they answer the question: What did you accomplish in this job that someone else wouldn't have?
New grads need work experience.
I receive all too many resumes from recent grads who have literally no work experience: nothing, not internships, not temp jobs, nothing at all. Find a way to get actual work experience before you leave school. Do internships every semester you are able, so that you have experience on your resume. Paid, unpaid, whatever it takes. If a part-time job of a few hours a week is all you have time for outside of your classes, that's fine. Do that. No one will hire you? Find work experience as a volunteer--that counts too.
In 1952, Gillen took the problem to the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a trustee. Together with representatives of the university, Bell set up a program called the Institute of Humanistic Studies for Executives. More than simply training its young executives to do a particular job, the institute would give them, in a 10-month immersion program on the Penn campus, what amounted to a complete liberal arts education. There were lectures and seminars led by scholars from Penn and other colleges in the area -- 550 hours of course work in total, and more reading, Baltzell reported, than the average graduate student was asked to do in a similar time frame.
The 2011 Spring Student Internship Program is now accepting applications.
Click here (http://careers.state.gov/students/programs.html#SIP) for more information and to start the online application process. Please note that the deadline to submit completed applications is July 01, 2010. You must be a U.S. Citizen and a student (a full- or part-time continuing college or university junior, or graduate student - including graduating seniors intending to go on to graduate school) to be eligible. Please read the program description and vacancy announcement for more information.
Here's an excerpt from an excellent article on the decline of leadership skills in American institutions by William Deresiewicz. It's from a graduation lecture given at Westpoint and reprinted in the current volume of The American Scholar:
"We have a crisis of leadership in America because our overwhelming power and wealth, earned under earlier generations of leaders, made us complacent, and for too long we have been training leaders who only know how to keep the routine going. Who can answer questions, but don't know how to ask them. Who can fulfill goals, but don't know how to set them. Who think about how to get things done, but not whether they're worth doing in the first place. What we have now are the greatest technocrats the world has ever seen, people who have been trained to be incredibly good at one specific thing, but who have no interest in anything beyond their area of expertise. What we don't have are leaders.
What we don't have, in other words, are thinkers. People who can think for themselves. People who can formulate a new direction: for the country, for a corporation or a college, for the Army--a new way of doing things, a new way of looking at things. People, in other words, with vision."
Deresiewicz ties this lack of thinking and vision to the imagination- and attention-detroying power of modern technologies. Today's youth are simply too distracted by cell phones, Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, etc. to be able to sit down and concentrate. As an antidote, he recommends the deep and slow reading of great books...old books--the kind we study we in the Humanities:
"So why is reading books any better than reading tweets or wall posts? Well, sometimes it isn't. Sometimes, you need to put down your book, if only to think about what you're reading, what you think about what you're reading. But a book has two advantages over a tweet. First, the person who wrote it thought about it a lot more carefully. The book is the result of his solitude, his attempt to think for himself.
Second, most books are old. This is not a disadvantage: this is precisely what makes them valuable. They stand against the conventional wisdom of today simply because they're notfrom today. Even if they merely reflect the conventional wisdom of their own day, they say something different from what you hear all the time. But the great books, the ones you find on a syllabus, the ones people have continued to read, don't reflect the conventional wisdom of their day. They say things that have the permanent power to disrupt our habits of thought. They were revolutionary in their own time, and they are still revolutionary today. And when I say "revolutionary," I am deliberately evoking the American Revolution, because it was a result of precisely this kind of independent thinking. Without solitude--the solitude of Adams and Jefferson and Hamilton and Madison and Thomas Paine--there would be no America.
Internship and Employment Opportunities at the Springville Museum of Art
Now accepting Intern Applications for Spring/Summer, Fall & Winter 2010
Gain valuable job experience in a dynamic and beautiful setting! Internships are offered on a rotating basis by academic semester and open to professionally directed students and graduates. Experience available in:
Curatorial, Education, Operations, Fundraising & Donor Cultivation, Communications & Marketing, Graphic Design, Event Management, and more! We have a large variety of projects just waiting for an intern with the right skill set.
Internships are unpaid, but offer great exposure to a wide variety of practical experiences in non-profit museum work. Academic credit is available Internship requirements: Commit to 12 week internship with a minimum of 6 hours/week
To apply: Submit letter of intent, resume, and three professional references
Contact: Natalie Petersen, Associate Director
There is 1 internship position open at the Consulate of Spain in Los Angeles for 2010-2011. A qualified applicant would meet the following criteria: -Must be a student and must take at least 1 credit hour per semester (including Spring/Summer) -Must be willing to live in the intern apartment provided -Must speak fluent Spanish -Must be a U.S. citizen (due to University regulations)
The intern gets a monthly wage that they then use to pay the bills of the furnished apartment that is provided as well as other living expenses; there is not much left over for saving. It's a wonderful opportunity for a student who is organized, interested in foreign affairs, bilingual in Spanish and English, and is highly motivated.
Please tell anyone interested to email their cover letters and resumes to WardJen@ldschurch.org. Applicants will be contacted by phone to arrange an interview.
BYU grad Rachel Nielson is engaging her Humanities education by overseeing volunteer work at an orphanage in El Salvador. She is currently looking for volunteers for Fall 2010.
Description: The Hogar del Niño Project focuses on improving the quality of life for residents of an orphanage for persons with disabilities in El Salvador. Our volunteers live at the orphanage in three-month shifts, year-round. They plan classes, recreational activities, programs, and stimulation for the orphanage residents who have mental and/or physical disabilities.
Please contact Rachel Nielson at firstname.lastname@example.org or call HELP International (801) 374-0556 with questions. FAQ can be found here http://help-international.org/countries-and-programs/hogar-del-nino.html
Recruiters from companies at this year's Career and Internship Fair were almost uniformly looking for students with the right skills, not the right major. Organizations as diverse as Goldman Sachs, Idaho State Government, Qualtrics, Buckle, Smuckers, Sears/K-Mart, Eli Lilly, even an electrical engineering company offer internship experiences, career training, and eventually jobs to students from humanities majors. They are interested in students who are motivated, creative, articulate, and with good people skills--i.e., you! Several recruiters explicitly said that they prefer the passion, flexibility and communication skills of Humanities students to other purely vocationally-oriented students.
If you missed the fairs this year (there is one in fall and winter), be on the lookout for them next year. Come to the Humanities College Advisement Center for help with CV preparation and interviewing strategy.
In a down economy Apple somehow keeps beating Wall Street's expectations. How do they do it? According to Steve Jobs, the liberal arts play a big role. For example, concerning their new breakthrough iPad, Jobs says: "The reason that Apple is able to create products like iPad is because we always try to be at the intersection of technology and liberal arts, to be able to get the best of both." Read more here: http://brainstormtech.blogs.fortune.cnn.com/2010/01/27/live-steve-jobs-presents-the-tablet/