Summary of “The New Liberal Arts” by Sanford J Ungar
In his essay, “The New Liberal Arts” Sanford J. Ungar advocates a liberal arts college education for all despite the current economic hardship that many Americans face. He lists seven common misconceptions about liberal arts education and then proceeds to explain why they are not so. The first misconception that he sets straight is that vocational training is a better alternative to liberal arts in today’s economic times. He says that although focused career training may be a quick fix, students may not always be able to find work in that one specific field, and it is better for them to gain a broad range of knowledge. He then argues that although people may think that college graduates with liberal arts degrees are having a harder time finding good jobs, that is not the case. In reality today’s job market is difficult for all college graduates, regardless of their major. In his third point, Ungar disputes the view that the liberal arts are particularly irrelevant for low-income individuals. He says that they although they may not have the same educational background as their more affluent peers, they catch up fast. They deserve the well-rounded education that the liberal arts has to offer as much as anyone else. His fourth point is that a liberal arts education covers not only art, but sciences and math as well. His fifth point is that a liberal education has nothing to do with the liberal Democrats who govern our country. His sixth point is that America is not the only country that still values the liberal arts, other countries such as china are showing increasing interest.His seventh point is that although costs for attending college are high, liberal arts colleges are not irrelevant. He says the cost to attend a small liberal arts college can be less then the cost of a big public university because of the available need-based financial aid.
In my eyes this article is as transparent as a piece of scotch tape. In the last section of his essay, Ungar says” The method I happen to advocate for obvious reasons, is the small, residential liberal-arts college, usually independent, where there is close interaction between faculty members and students and , at its best, a sense of of community emerges that prepares young people to develop high standards for themselves and other” in other words, Ungar as a president of a small, residential liberal-arts college, is saying that the best kind of college to go to is the same type in which he is employed. Although the author made some valid points I think this essay overall is just an advertisement for Goucher College in Baltimore.