Mark Cuban has recently said ‘don’t go to school for finance – liberal arts is the future.’ What are your thoughts on this issue?
Mark Cuban has recently said 'don't go to school for finance -- liberal arts is the future.' What are your thoughts on this issue?
I love that Mark Cuban said this, this is fantastic.
One thing I can speak to specifically is the canon of knowledge, particularly through literature and history, that is inherent in any liberal arts degree. I am part of Crimson’s New York City team, and I am also surrounded by a lot of educators and academics in my particular circle of professional and personal friends. A current conversation point that is trending in cafes and social gatherings is that the US political climate is a reflection of the consequences that come along with a nation that has long neglected “the canon.” The books that individuals read in a liberal arts academic setting require reflection, and the structure of liberal arts courses creates the sort of conversational, Socratic environment to practice the necessary introspective skills. Reading a liberal arts canon, thinking about it, and talking about it with both likeminded and contrary-thinking individuals prepares people for the complexities of a diverse world, and to navigate the world with a certain grace and humanity that comes from exercising the mind in a very particular way.
I was a history major in a school that values the liberal arts wholeheartedly. My understanding of history was informed not only by the primary and secondary sources that were essential to the scholarship in my departmental courses, but also the wide array of other ideas that are a part of the greater canon. Authors ranging from Montaigne and Goethe, to Deleuze and Guatarri, to Baldwin and Morrison - this material informs the lens through which I view the world.
When you are in your late teens and early twenties and your brain has a certain amount of maturity and platisticity coming together in a very particular way, the value of a liberal arts education can set you up for modalities of thinking that could be otherwise impossible. There’s no guaranteed perfect course of study, and you have to do what is right for YOU. But don’t just rule out the liberal arts for the sake of logistics, or to give yourself better odds at career goals that seem otherwise unrelated to good books and history. A good brain is a good brain, and can accomplish whatever it wants to if it sets out to learn and accomplish a goal. A liberal arts education can help make a good brain an even better brain, make a good heart an articulate heart, and give you the skills to think critically about the human experience and its path.
Right now in this historical moment, it feels very much like we could all use a little more liberal arts around us.