Miriam response

Respond to this post in at least 100 words

Miriam Porter

Liberal Arts and other studies in the Humanities develop students into critical thinking, global individuals. But rare is the student who enters college with these aspirations. Most have an interest in getting a good paying job when they graduate, so they choose a profession and build their major accordingly. Some enter college knowing they want to be a teacher or scientist or engineer and they choose the best college for their particular choice of study. Those who choose STEM as their major, in hopes that specializing in a particular field will help to make them look more attractive, might be surprised. “Experts tell us that the industry-specific knowledge of a typical vocational education is exhausted within a few years, if not by the time students enter the workforce” (Jay & Graff, 2012). Convincing arguments for Liberal Arts and other Humanities majors can be found in the film The heart of the matter: A film by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. As John Lithgow described the flower, there is a stem and a blossom. “The stem is just that, STEM, science, technology, engineering and math. But the blossom of the flower is the humanities. Without the blossom, the stem is completely useless; it is just a stem” (American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 2013). George Lucas then explains “sciences are the how; the humanities are the why” (American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 2013). The how is important, yes, but to answer the why, we must use thought and consideration, research and critical thinking to help us develop the why. As Linwood so eloquently stated “professional skills are required only during the professional life of a person, whereas critical thinking skills are important throughout life. Weak arguments: “In an age when a higher education is increasingly about moving quickly through a curriculum streamlined to prepare students for a job, the humanities have no practical utility” (Jay & Graff, 2012). This argument is one-dimensional and short-sighted; it dismisses the personal development that is required in the study of the humanities because it is focused only on the immediate practical market application. The beauty of the humanities is that it develops the student as an individual and provides them with the tools necessary to build their best life. “The humanities are those subject areas that allow us to really probe what it means to be human; the humanities teach us who we are” (American Academy of Arts & Sciences, 2013). Defending Liberal Arts’ value: Those who focus on STEM disciplines miss the bigger picture that majoring in the humanities provides. “The humanities foster critical thinking and the ability to sympathetically imagine the predicament of others; employers outside academe are recognizing the practical value of humanities training” (Jay & Graff, 2012). A Humanities major can fit into any company and brings exceptional value to each position. A Humanities major has good communication skills and can represent any company in the best light due to their well-rounded education. References: Jay, P., & Graff, G. (2012, Jan. 5). Fear of being useful (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.. Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved from http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2012/01/05/ess… American Academy of Arts and Sciences (Producer). (2013). The heart of the matter: A film (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. [Video]. Retrieved from

Manage Discussion Entry

Liberal Arts and other studies in the Humanities develop students into critical thinking, global individuals. But rare is the student who enters college with these aspirations. Most have an interest in getting a good paying job when they graduate, so they choose a profession and build their major accordingly. Some enter college knowing they want to be a teacher or scientist or engineer and they choose the best college for their particular choice of study. Those who choose STEM as their major, in hopes that specializing in a particular field will help to make them look more attractive, might be surprised. “Experts tell us that the industry-specific knowledge of a typical vocational education is exhausted within a few years, if not by the time students enter the workforce” (Jay & Graff, 2012).

Convincing arguments for Liberal Arts and other Humanities majors can be found in the film The heart of the matter: A film by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. As John Lithgow described the flower, there is a stem and a blossom. “The stem is just that, STEM, science, technology, engineering and math. But the blossom of the flower is the humanities. Without the blossom, the stem is completely useless; it is just a stem” (American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 2013). George Lucas then explains “sciences are the how; the humanities are the why” (American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 2013). The how is important, yes, but to answer the why, we must use thought and consideration, research and critical thinking to help us develop the why. As Linwood so eloquently stated “professional skills are required only during the professional life of a person, whereas critical thinking skills are important throughout life.

Weak arguments: “In an age when a higher education is increasingly about moving quickly through a curriculum streamlined to prepare students for a job, the humanities have no practical utility” (Jay & Graff, 2012). This argument is one-dimensional and short-sighted; it dismisses the personal development that is required in the study of the humanities because it is focused only on the immediate practical market application. The beauty of the humanities is that it develops the student as an individual and provides them with the tools necessary to build their best life. “The humanities are those subject areas that allow us to really probe what it means to be human; the humanities teach us who we are” (American Academy of Arts & Sciences, 2013).

Defending Liberal Arts’ value: Those who focus on STEM disciplines miss the bigger picture that majoring in the humanities provides. “The humanities foster critical thinking and the ability to sympathetically imagine the predicament of others; employers outside academe are recognizing the practical value of humanities training” (Jay & Graff, 2012). A Humanities major can fit into any company and brings exceptional value to each position. A Humanities major has good communication skills and can represent any company in the best light due to their well-rounded education.

References:

Jay, P., & Graff, G. (2012, Jan. 5). Fear of being useful (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.. Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved from http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2012/01/05/ess… (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.

American Academy of Arts and Sciences (Producer). (2013). The heart of the matter: A film (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. [Video]. Retrieved from