The Importance of Liberal Arts in Business Majors
As reported by Earl Shorris, a Liberal Education is tool that is extremely beneficial. A Liberal Education teaches a person a way to think and behave, and view the world not just as a problem that has a specific way to be solved, but as something complicated that one must interpret for themselves. A person graduating from a Liberal Arts college leaves with so much more than just a degree from one field of study, but with the background knowledge of so many different areas of education. This is why I am conflicted as to why the majority of Liberal Arts colleges do not offer Business as a ...view middle of the document...
In Plato’s “Allegory of the Cave”, the same idea of liberal education can be interpreted. Plato described a scene of people chained to a wall, with fire burning behind them, and these captivated people just watching shadows all day with no real knowledge of what they are. This can be interpreted in many different ways but in my personal opinion the chains are a representation of someone without a liberal education. Someone without a liberal education is “trapped” in a certain way of thinking, not using different areas of study to help broaden their way of thinking, and instead just attending a large university and receiving a very basic area of study with no connection to other areas of education. I think the shadows represent this misguided minds of people who look at problems having one direct answer and not trying to see things from many different perspectives. They have their own idea of what an area of study entails but only look at it from one view instead of considering the other areas of study along with it.
Another opinion we could examine is one of an actual business professor of a liberal arts college. Professor Jeffrey Nesteruk is chair of the Department of Business, Organizations, and Society at Franklin & Marshall College and in his essay Teaching Business at a Liberal Arts College, he explains how a business degree in a liberal arts college is important, and the ways to achieve it. He writes that in order for a business school to succeed in a liberal arts college three things must be achieved: blending, bridging, and building. He defines blending as “teaching traditional business subjects from a liberal arts perspective” (1). What he means by this is not just teaching these traditional subjects with one set answer to the problems they approach, but looking at these topics through different perspectives. This is a very liberal concept. He also insists to not teach broad courses such as marketing as a whole but to have a more focused class which examines maybe one exact kind form of marketing and study it very closely. The following thing that must be achieved is bridging. He defines bridging as connecting what the students learn in business class to the things they learned in a liberal arts class. Although some students, with their previous year of liberal learning may make this connection themselves, he believes it is the responsibility of the professor to also help point them out. The final step is building. As he explains it, building means to use the business program to help broaden the study of the liberal arts in the college. What is classified as liberal education has developed over the years and by including...