May 14, 2007

Loving the Liberal Arts College

Barbara Ehrenreich on the allure of a college educated employee:

... My theory is that employers prefer college grads because they see a college degree chiefly as mark of one's ability to obey and conform. Whatever else you learn in college, you learn to sit still for long periods while appearing to be awake. And whatever else you do in a white-collar job, most of the time you'll be sitting and feigning attention. Sitting still for hours on end--whether in library carrels or office cubicles--does not come naturally to humans. It must be learned--although no college has yet been honest enough to offer a degree in seat-warming. ...

The very keen thing about going to one of the country's many small, tucked-away liberal arts colleges is that you do a lot less sitting still and a lot more participating. You write more (even in science classes,) you engage in more group discussion, you get encouraged to pick up and study abroad or take internships for credit. And there will be projects, oh yes. One of the main factors that decided me on applying to my liberal arts college was that every time I talked to someone from Evergreen, they always had the niftiest sounding projects underway, or had gone somewhere exotic to put theory into practice. You also have more of a chance as an undergraduate to spend time with your professors and get to know them; something most class schedules and sizes at larger undergraduate institutions can preclude, and which can truly enrich your time at school.

Anyway, that's my two bits. And yes, The Evergreen State College rocks.

Posted by natasha at May 14, 2007 07:46 AM | Education | Technorati links |