It Started with Chemistry
I fell in love with chemistry when I was a little girl: I spent my childhood examining the world of elements with a simple chemistry set. I had a voracious appetite for learning that helped me build bridges between seemingly disparate disciplines such as astrophysics and neuroscience. I feel the awe and wonder, still, as I continue to explore.
Calling all students and young professionals from all communities, backgrounds and interests to share experiences and opinions on what they would want their peers to know now about why, how and where the arts and humanities can play a foundational and transformative role in their educations and career opportunities.
“What are you going to do with that degree?” Sadly, many students in the liberal arts and humanities have gotten used to that condescending question by now. With economic downturn in 2008 and a job market demand trending towards science and engineering degrees, a specialized education seemed like the obvious solution to steady employment in a tough market.
But trends in industry and the very nature of work since then are beginning to paint a very different picture of the future. A recent study even suggests that this reputation is undeserved and deeply misleading. Instead, it finds a high correlation between a broad undergraduate education and financial success. In fact, those who take the arts and humanities in addition to their main field of study are 31-72% more likely than others to have higher-level positions and earn more than $100,000.
This is the fifth of a series of interviews with extraordinary people who are working in partnership with or using their skills and training as artists and humanists to improve their communities, challenge assumptions, and advance our understanding of the human condition.
Ryan Jude Novelline is a Boston-based contemporary artist whose experience includes work for Amazon, Sony, Universal, Diane Von Furstenberg, GAP, & Walt Disney Imagineering, amongst others. His work has been recognized domestically and internationally by the Huffington Post, New York Magazine, Fashion Police, Yahoo News, Asian Geographic, and a host of others. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Illustration from Rhode Island School of Design.
It’s no secret that the dynamics surrounding higher education and post-college employment are changing fast these days. The interconnected world we live in is also changing at a quick pace. These changes, fueled by technology, politics, and economics, affects the way we learn, work, play, and connect to each other. It’s exactly for these reasons that there is no better time to invest in a Liberal Arts education.
In the world that awaits future graduates, the competitive edge belongs to those with bright, curious, and agile minds. Objective, technological or scientific knowledge will no longer be enough. The world you or your child will enter after college is already demanding more human-centric solutions to our collective challenges. With this in mind, here are just a few reasons why Liberal Arts education is so valuable.
This is the fourth of a series of interviews with extraordinary people who are working in partnership with or using their skills and training as artists and humanists to improve their communities, challenge assumptions, and advance our understanding of the human condition.
Performer, teacher, director Rhodessa Jones is Co-Artistic Director of San Francisco’s performance company Cultural Odyssey. Jones directs The Medea Project: Theater for Incarcerated Women, an award-winning performance workshop committed to incarcerated women’s personal and social transformation, now in it’s 23rd year. As recipient of US Artist Fellowship, Jones expanded her work in jails and educational institutions internationally. She conducts Medea Projects in South African prisons, working with incarcerated women and training local artists and correctional personnel to embed the Medea process inside these institutions. In 2012, she was named Arts Envoy by the US Embassy in South Africa. Recent US residencies include Brown University and Scripps College Humanities Institute. Recipient of an Honorary Doctorate from CA College of the Arts, San Francisco Bay Guardian’s Lifetime Achievement Award, SF Foundation’s Community Leadership Award, Non-Profit Arts Excellence Award by the SF Business Arts Council, and an Otto Rene Castillo Award for Political Theater.
This is the third of a series of interviews with extraordinary people who are working in partnership with or using their skills and training as artists and humanists to improve their communities, challenge assumptions, and advance our understanding of the human condition.
Dr. Kathleen M. Pike is Executive Director and Scientific Co-Director of the Global Mental Health Program and is Associate Director of the Health and Aging Policy Fellowship Program at the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University. She is also Supervising Psychologist in the Eating Disorders Program at NYSPI. Dr. Pike has provided consultation on mental health policy to Japanese Parliamentary Representatives. Dr Pike has conducted pioneering work in the area of risk factors for eating disorders, and she has developed a widely-disseminated treatment program for anorexia nervosa that has demonstrated effectiveness in multiple clinical studies.
Dr. Pike actively consults to programs around the world on the implementation of evidence-based treatment for eating disorders and has received awards for her clinical service and teaching. She recently served as consultant to the American Psychiatric Association DSM-5 task force on cultural factors associated with the clinical presentation and risk factors of eating disorders. She also serves on the Feeding and Eating Disorders Working Group for the World Health Organization revision of the International Classification of Diseases.