Because RIT is a technical college, liberal arts students often
feel pressured into thinking that the purpose of an undergraduate
education is to train us for a job in a narrowly defined field.
Our liberal arts education gives us a
solid foundation on which to enter society as well-rounded,
Whether we plan to continue our education or enter the work
force, our liberal arts education equips us with problem solving
skills that allow us to analyze and interpret information in
a host of settings. We practice the social skills and the oral
and written communication skills that a survey of 800 small
business owners point to as the most significant for employers.
We develop the ability to work in diverse groups and the confidence
to make independent decisions. We gain the insight, critical
thinking and research skills that are a part of "learning
how to learn." The CEO of a successful business in Rochester
informed me that liberal arts students are the best workers
to hire because they can apply their knowledge in a broad array
of professional fields, and they have a keen ability to learn
and apply new concepts quickly.
Although we may not be learning a specific trade, as many
of our counterparts are, when we walk across the stage at graduation
we will be prepared for the professional world with an extensive
worldview. This universal knowledge will prove invaluable in
a rapidly changing economy where today's skills are insufficient
for tomorrow's demands.
The next time someone asks you what college you are in, instead
of looking down or mumbling your answer; look into the inquirer's
eyes and proudly state that you are a liberal arts student.
With our broad perspectives, and a nurtured mind we shall not
face an obstacle we can't overcome.