Some parents and students worry that a liberal arts education isn’t good preparation for a career. Because of this, many colleges and universities are seeing fewer people studying the liberal arts.
In reality, the liberal arts teach skills that employers value, and are an essential part of educating students in the 21st century.
Has enrollment in your liberal arts programs dropped? Here’s how you can change that.
Help Students Understand the Value of Liberal Arts Degree Programs
The liberal arts teach important skills, including:
- Big-picture thinking
- Critical thinking
A person may be able to get a job without these skills, but it’s hard to imagine them rising in the ranks much. According to an article in U.S. News & World Report, a 2013 survey of employers by Hart Research Associates showed 93 percent agreed that whether an employee can think critically, communicate clearly, and solve complex problems is more important than what they majored in.
Highlight these facts, along with info about successful liberal arts graduates and interviews with CEOs who value the skills mentioned above, on your website, social media, emails, and in printed pieces to get the word out.
Provide Quality Career Counseling
Research suggests students majoring in a liberal arts degree program have job prospects that are at least as good as students studying other subjects.
Still, to quiet fears that a liberal arts degree won’t result in a job, many schools are beefing up their career services. Career counseling should be promoted throughout college, not just at the end. Career counseling should also emphasize to students that their liberal arts education is giving them important skills, and it should help students sell those skills to future employers via their resume and interviews.
Encourage liberal arts students to take part in internships, as well as other opportunities to make personal connections and get hands-on experience outside of the classroom, such as extracurricular activities and semesters abroad. If you can, offer them stipends or scholarships so that more students, especially those with less money, can afford these experiences.
Now that you know more about promoting the value of the liberal arts in educating students in the 21st century, do you have the resources to get that message out? Contact us to learn how we can help.