Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree? | Page 4 | TigerDroppings.com

Posted byMessage
SlowFlowPro
Stanford Fan
Simple Solutions to Complex Probs
Member since Jan 2004
300946 posts
 Online 

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

Maybe even location doesn't matter and businesses should actually get back to training employees rather than expecting colleges to do that?


meh

higher education has shifted and provides a lot of trade-based training. i'm not a fan, but it is what it is






Back to top
SlowFlowPro
Stanford Fan
Simple Solutions to Complex Probs
Member since Jan 2004
300946 posts
 Online 

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

Me too, if that's my choices I'm hiring the one I can get the cheapest

oh my b i misunderstood

there are a lot of poor yale grads with BAs, fwiw. you may be able to snap em cheap!






Back to top
  Replies (0)
Hammertime
UNO Fan
apples
Member since Jan 2012
16951 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


I have a buddy that is one of the smarter people I know. He got a Philosophy degree with a History minor and has been a GM at Cane's for 8yrs. Chronic underachiever, key word chronic.

He wants to get a better, higher paying job now and realizes that his only redeeming quality is having been a manager at Cane's for so long






Back to top
  Replies (0)
DaSaltyTiger
LSU Fan
Alexandria/Pineville, LA area
Member since Dec 2004
4689 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


With the exception of some specialty degrees, most undergraduate degrees are general in nature with some additional focus on a specific academic area. The graduate has a well rounded education, and has demonstrated the disciplined to not only complete a degree program, but to work through a usually apathetic bureaucracy to get there. I am more concerned at that point as to how they did in their English classes (command of language is important), how well they can communicate, how well they can problem solve, and how well they can work with others. So, depending upon the job, yes, there are instances that I would hire a LA degree person.





Back to top
HarryBalzack
At your mom's
Member since Oct 2012
8947 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


Depends. If they have the skill set and work experience to do the job, yes. College is supposed to be about an education, not technical training. On the other hand, you don't want an English major designing a bridge, but if you're hiring for sales, business, finance, etc., what difference does it make?

I have a liberal arts degree and went for a job interview with a finance company - they tend to hire LA majors. There were about 30 of us there for the interview and we all introduced ourselves. 60% of them had finance/accounting/business degrees, the rest were from LA and assorted other backgrounds. After a little intro spiel on what they were looking for, they took us to a room to take a math test - amortizations, compounded interest, long division, percentages, and such, the kind of shite you do in finance. Of the 30 candidates, only about six of us passed the test. Only 2 of those six were finance/business/accounting majors.

That's not a knock against non-LA majors, but just an illustration of how many degrees don't translate into real-world applications. Funny that until the 1930s and 40s, "business schools" were the domain of for-profit school, like ITT Tech, Virginia College, and all those other joints that advertise on TV. Hell, an uncle of mine won what became Baylor University's business college in a mail-in sweepstakes, back in the early 1900s. Before 1950, most college graduates were liberal arts majors and they built American industry into the most powerful industrial economy in the world. Since the late 50s, business schools and their graduates have become integrated with the larger university community. American industry has also declined precipitously. I've no study to show that one caused the other, but it's an interesting correlation.

In short, Liberal Arts majors are critical thinkers and are capable of forming and articulating an informed, adjudged opinion - that's not to say that others can't, but that those skills are the primary goal of a liberal arts education. To your point, however, it is difficult to get your foot in the door at certain places when you have a Liberal Arts degree.

Here's a few Liberal Arts graduates to ponder:

Harold Varmus, a Noble-prize winner in Medicine for discovering the cellular origin of retroviral oncogenes. Varmus holds a B.A. in English literature and a graduate degree in English before entering medical school.
Jill Barad, former CEO of Mattel Inc., one of the world's largest toy company with products like Barbie dolls and Hot Wheels cars. Jill graduated with degrees in English and Psychology.
Carol M. Browner, the longest-serving Administrator in the history of the Environmental Protection Agency in the United States. Graduated with a degree in English.
Christopher Meloni, an Emmi-nominated actor known for his roles on shows such as Law & Order, Special Victims Unit and Oz. He graduated with a degree in History.
Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, a medieval history and philosophy major .
Michael Eisner, Walt Disney CEO, never took a single business course as he earned a double major in English and theater.
Neal Rabin, CEO Miramar Systems, majored in creative writing.
Michael Dell, founder and CEO of Dell Computer, was a pre-med biology major at the University of Texas before dropping out after his freshman year.
Sue Kronick, now group president of Federated Department Stores, majored in Asian studies. Her rise from a Bloomingdale's buyer was helped by understanding India's economic system so well that she found ways to slash the cost of imports.
Howard Stringer, CEO, Sony Corporation.
Robert Johnson, CEO, BET TV.
James Kilts, CEO, Gillette Corporation.
Samuel Palmisano, CEO, IBM Corporation.
Ben Silverman, Co-Chairman, NBC TV
Other famous history majors: George W. Bush, Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, Newt Gingrich, Antonin Scalia, George J. Mitchell, Anthony M. Kennedy, Elena Kagan, Eric Holder, Henry Kissinger, Bill O’Reilly, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bill Bradley, Grant Hill, Chris Berman, Wolf Blitzer, Lee Iacocca, Martha Stewart, Katharine Hepburn, Conan O'Brien, Lauryn Hill, Steve Carell, Edward Norton, Ellen Barkin, Jimmy Buffett, Janeane Garofalo, Michael Palin, Sacha Baron Cohen, Larry David, Ayn Rand




This post was edited on 1/10 at 11:20 am


Back to top
  Replies (0)
CocoLoco
New Orleans Saints Fan
30° 12' N 92° 0' W
Member since Jan 2012
13740 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


I started off with a business degree, and my family has a Loan and Mortgage company I've been working at for a few years. I can take over the place at some point if I'd like. I just felt like I was going to school for something I will never be completely happy doing.

I decided I'd go for Moving Image Arts (newer major at ULL), to do Film Scoring. It fits under a Liberal Arts degree, but it's what I want to do. I have a few connections with it, and it's also nice that Louisiana is 3rd in the nation for film production.

I'm sure people will look down on me or call me a fool for my degree choice, but I really don't give a shite. I'd rather do a job I enjoy. If it doesn't work out, then I have a good back up plan that I am already very familiar with, and a minor in business (know many people with majors in Business who are older and can't find jobs worth a shit).






Back to top
  Replies (0)
Hammertime
UNO Fan
apples
Member since Jan 2012
16951 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

With the exception of some specialty degrees, most undergraduate degrees are general in nature with some additional focus on a specific academic area. The graduate has a well rounded education, and has demonstrated the disciplined to not only complete a degree program, but to work through a usually apathetic bureaucracy to get there
I got a forestry degree, and we use basically every single thing that we learned in school. Probably 80% of our upper level classes were labs where we had to problem solve and write prescriptions for tracts of land. It was like actual work experience, and most other majors don't get anywhere close to that.

We learned everything from paperwork, dealing with the government, road building, tabulating formulas and calculations customized to what we needed in Excel, and of course, the growth and management of trees. The only thing I felt was lacking was hardwoods management, but that is the antithesis of an exact science so it is hard to make a standard way of teaching it.






Back to top
  Replies (0)
foshizzle
LSU Fan
Washington DC metro
Member since Mar 2008
30534 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


I hired a guy with a degree in Greek Literature once. I didn't care that he liked to translate Homer for fun at night (yes, he did that), what mattered to me was that he thought extremely analytically and had fantastic writing skills, which is exactly what I was looking for in a software designer.

Turned out to be arguably the best hire I've made, ever.






Back to top
Pony-Vomit
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Jan 2013
235 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

looking for in a software designer. Turned out to be arguably the best hire I've made, ever.


Did he have any software design experience at all?






Back to top
LSUsCRYSTALball
LSU Fan
Member since Dec 2012
1702 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


For what job? Chemical engineer? No. Walmart cashier? Yes.






Back to top
CocoLoco
New Orleans Saints Fan
30° 12' N 92° 0' W
Member since Jan 2012
13740 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

For what job? Chemical engineer? No. Walmart cashier? Yes.



What a great post.






Back to top
Freauxzen
USA Fan
Utah
Member since Feb 2006
22305 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

meh

higher education has shifted and provides a lot of trade-based training. i'm not a fan, but it is what it is



Oh no I know, but that's part of the problem. Instead of letting college education be about general education and critical thinking with a small taste of more specific skills (and an introduction to the REAL necessary degrees of law and medical), culture, private business and the education sector themselves have turned it into a glorified 4-year job training seminar. That's it.

That isn't and shouldn't be the point of college, but it is.

So that means:

1) Colleges now support a plethora of useless degrees (noted these are also exterior to liberal arts degrees) in everything from Fashion Design to Golf Management, Art History, Sexual Health Studies, etc. Do we really want to be supporting this through our state education funds.

2) This makes businesses compare college to job training therefore: 1) They don't have to have vigorous training of employees 2) They don't invest in their talent often 3) They don't take chances on people outside of degrees

3) And then they hire based on ridiculous general "qualifications." Does a secretary REALLY need a degree in Business now? No. You shouldn't need a degree to be one, much less in something so specific.

4) Culture then expects and asks everyone to get a degree. Which again is a giant waste of time for the culture, for the person and for the business.

And yes it's a vicious circle.

Colleges need to stop providing degrees in cheetah management and start focusing their real degrees on what they are. English is the critical thinking and writing degree... As you can see from the list above it's far from useless and "Starbucks" specific. History is about analysis of the past and *gasps* trending analysis. They need to do a better job of developing those pieces of their curriculum.

They can do a better job of putting MODERN skills into their degrees.

Businesses need to hire the person, not the degree. And spend the money to train them. I know that employee dedication is a fickle issue currently in our mobile environment but maybe they would improve the QOL by CREATING good employees rather than expecting colleges to do that.

Everyone else needs to shut up and stop forcing people into college. Degrees aren't for everyone.

Maybe then the hard-headed people (some in this thread) will realize that not only are liberal arts degrees necessary, but in some areas are far superior to an engineering degree.



This post was edited on 1/10 at 11:27 am


Back to top
LSUsCRYSTALball
LSU Fan
Member since Dec 2012
1702 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

What a great post.


Welllll the OP was not specific at all. It kind of matters what job it is genius






Back to top
  Replies (0)
HarryBalzack
At your mom's
Member since Oct 2012
8947 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

And yes it's a vicious circle.
Especially when they hire HR people who have Human Resources degrees. I knew a guy who headed an economic development board in Alabama and ate lunch every day with the head of Alabama Power. The Alabama Power CEO bitched and complained that he didn't need one more MBA, MIS, or Engineering graduate, he needed people who could think and he didn't give a shite about their degrees. But because the HR department was so afflicted by tunnel vision, he couldn't get them or middle management to see the situation any differently.

One of my professors in undergrad had been the special adviser to the president of US Steel before returning to academia. He was a historian, so I asked him why the guy hired him. He said that the USS CEO went looking specifically for history or English majors because he needed critical thinkers, writers, and people capable of analysis.

Higher Ed is quickly stealing the trade school niche from the community colleges. The IT related fields are the most hilarious - morons don't realize that in the four years they take to finish the entire field will change. Seriously, nearly every IT guy I work with in the real world is some major other than an IT-related field.






Back to top
Freauxzen
USA Fan
Utah
Member since Feb 2006
22305 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

Especially when they hire HR people who have Human Resources degrees. I knew a guy who headed an economic development board in Alabama and ate lunch every day with the head of Alabama Power. The Alabama Power CEO bitched and complained that he didn't need one more MBA, MIS, or Engineering graduate, he needed people who could think and he didn't give a shite about their degrees. But because the HR department was so afflicted by tunnel vision, he couldn't get them or middle management to see the situation any differently.


And those people with tunnel vision are so comfortable in it. It's easy to say "History Major? I'm sure he can't tell me anything about business," as if "business" was a concept beyond the scope of anyone outside of business.

quote:

One of my professors in undergrad had been the special adviser to the president of US Steel before returning to academia. He was a historian, so I asked him why the guy hired him. He said that the USS CEO went looking specifically for history or English majors because he needed critical thinkers, writers, and people capable of analysis.


I'd put my LA/humanities degree up against anything outside of Hard Sciences. You really don't learn that much more. College is more about what classes you feel like attending anyway if you are not going to a highly specialized field.

Most other degrees shouldn't exist (including General Business degrees). I believe in probably a maximum of 25 core degrees. And that's being generous.

quote:

Higher Ed is quickly stealing the trade school niche from the community colleges. The IT related fields are the most hilarious - morons don't realize that in the four years they take to finish the entire field will change. Seriously, nearly every IT guy I work with in the real world is some major other than an IT-related field.


Bingo.






Back to top
  Replies (0)
unbeWEAVEable
LSU Fan
The Golf Board Godfather
Member since Apr 2010
11943 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


One of my degrees is a Liberal Arts degree, which I didn't know until I declared it.

I knew it as Disaster and Science Management.

That being said, if I told you I had a degree in DSM, would you think about me differently than if I said I had a degree in Liberal Arts?

FWIW, I completely agree with you...a liberal arts degree is worthless...which is why I have 2 others to fall back on.






Back to top
  Replies (0)
Hammertime
UNO Fan
apples
Member since Jan 2012
16951 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

Oh no I know, but that's part of the problem. Instead of letting college education be about general education and critical thinking with a small taste of more specific skills (and an introduction to the REAL necessary degrees of law and medical), culture, private business and the education sector themselves have turned it into a glorified 4-year job training seminar. That's it.
I had a big problem with LSU doing this exact thing. They are so concerned with teaching "their" way of doing things, they completely disregard critical thinkers. It really focuses on the people who can get good grades. Well whoopty fricking do, you can study and take tests well. Compare that to my real world experience, common sense, and problem solving abilities and I blow every single one of them out of the water. It is not hard to get them confused. Just say, "Tell me how this works" to something they no nothing about and watch them fumble along with calculations and equations.

ME is heavy on that. I haven't met one person who has basic common sense and has done anything to warrant that degree. I explained to another poster about a senior project I sat in on. These kids spent 6 months designing something that was just flat out stupid and wouldn't work well. The only reason they thought it would was because the computer told them it was going to. I looked at the projector and within 5 seconds realized that it could be 100x better. Did the professors ask any pertinent questions...no. Instead, they chose to ask about budget and timeline. These kids should be stuck behind a computer doing calculations for the remainder of their career, not designing things.



This post was edited on 1/10 at 12:08 pm


Back to top
foshizzle
LSU Fan
Washington DC metro
Member since Mar 2008
30534 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


quote:

Did he have any software design experience at all?


Not that I knew about. But damn if he couldn't concisely, concretely and accurately express ideas in writing, which is a critical skill for that line of work.






Back to top
  Replies (0)
Gaston
LSU Fan
Dirty Coast
Member since Aug 2008
20641 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


Personally, I think most liberal arts degrees are harder than most business or psychology degrees. A French Lit degree has to be way harder than a marketing degree, that's for damn sure.





Back to top
Boats n Hose
LSU Fan
NOLA
Member since Apr 2011
36303 posts

re: Would you hire a person who has a liberal arts degree?


I agree. They just aren't very marketable.





Back to top


Back to top