November 10, 2017

Graduates react as President Barack Obama delivers remarks during the commencement ceremony at Morehouse College. Credit: Obama White House

Imagine a 17-year-old high school student is choosing their college major. They’re deciding between an engineering-oriented degree and a focus on the humanities. Which degree will lead to the greatest job stability? Which major will be the most useful? You might be tempted to pick the engineering degree, but according to George Anders, a journalist and author of “You Can Do Anything: The Surprising Power of a "Useless" Liberal Arts Education,” the answer is not necessarily so obvious.

Three Takeaways 

  • Anders points out that “tech doesn’t work until you connect tech with people.” So even tech companies need people with social and communication skills… skills that can be found within the ranks of people with liberal arts degrees.
  • Liberal arts majors are getting some of those plum jobs in tech. According to a study by LinkedIn, there are tens of thousands of them working in the tech sector.
  • College needs to do two things, according to Anders: help you with your future job and broaden your horizons. And with a strong career center, Anders believes that liberal arts departments can do both.

More reading 

  • How does Wake Forest University help liberal arts majors start their career? The University adopted a cutting edge approach to career counseling. The New York Times takes a look.
  • Here’s the full study from LinkedIn and the World Economic Forum about the future of work.
  • George Anders writes about why the liberal arts are for everyone, not just the wealthy and well-connected.

pri, college, majors, Education, George Anders, innovation hub, liberal arts, WGBH, Kara Miller

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