“But What’s in it for Me?”

Today, on Facebook, a friend posted the following article from The Globe and Mail, Toronto’s main newspaper:

The opening paragraph to the article reads:

The relevance for the liberal arts in higher education should be obvious. Whether or not this trend–if it is a trend or just the wishful thinking of The Globe‘s reporter–signals that the current emphasis on learning outcomes and quantitative assessment may be coming to an end, it at least suggests that the days of explaining what you can “do” with a liberal arts degree might be numbered.

“Why, you can learn how to learn, of course!” is the reply that we should consider giving when students ask us the “pay off” question–thereby pairing their reasonable question with what will likely strike them as a surprising answer.

The number of graduates of our own Department who are now doctors and lawyers and teachers and business people and artists, and… (well, you get the idea) suggests to me that this might have been what we were doing all along.