Value of a Liberal Arts Degree

Lately, it seems as though the Liberal Arts are under attack.  Current economic conditions have increased focus on STEM fields and can cause students to question the practical application of a Liberal Arts degree.  However, the truth is that an education in the liberal arts prepares you for a successful career in many fields and teaches you meaningful ways of engaging with the world.  An education in the liberal arts fosters critical thinking skills, informed social involvement, and increases earning power.

Alumni Quotes

"The UAF Music program consists of faculty who provide unwavering and invaluable support in one of the most naturally beautiful college campuses in the United States.  This is the perfect environment for strong individuals to explore and develop their musical ability and imagination."

    -Sean Dowgray, Master of Music, Percussion, 2015

"My liberal arts degree taught me a broad range of skills that prepared me to tackle the unknown challenges that lied ahead.  Not just the challenged I already knew were coming.  This isn't just job preparation-it is life preparation."

    - Naomi Horne, Social Work, 2006 & 2013

"I didn't know what I was getting into.  It all started with a fun elective in eighth grade.  But by the time college graduation drew near, I'd done exchanges to Belgium, France, and French Canada, and a bachelors in French Language and Literature.  Two of the most influential teachers in my life had been my French teachers, and I was on the path to an international career."

   - Sara Harriger, French Languages and Literatures, 2002

"When its -50 and you're trudging in the dark though the snow to JB 101, the warm spotlight of the Academy Awards or the Emmys may seem a million miles away, but I have been fortunate to connect those paths, and know that Journalism & Broadcasting at the University of Alaska Fairbanks prepares you to make that opportunity a reality."

      - Ben Grossmann, Journalism, 1995.

General Stats

  • 86.8% - Growth of humanities majors since 1983
    • Beecroft, Alexander, "Post Navigation." The Conversation The Humanities What Went Right Comments.
  • 1/3 - Number of Fortune 500 CEOs with liberal arts degrees
    • Dorfman, Jeffrey. "Surprise: Humanities Degrees Provide Great Return on Investment." Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 20 Nov. 2014.
  • $40,000 - Average increase in earnings for humanities and social science majors by peak earning ages
    • Grasgreen, Allie. "Liberal Arts Grads Win Long-Term." Inside Higher Ed. Inside Higher Ed., 22 Jan. 2014.
  • 93%- Number of employers who agree than an ability to think critically, communicate clearly, and solve complex problems is more important than their undergraduate major.
    • Humphreys, Debra. "Employers More Interesting in Critical Thinking and Problem Solving Than College Major." Association of American Colleges & Universities . 10 Apr. 2013.
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