2012 May

Wall Street Journal


Colleges get Career-Minded: At Wake Forest University, students can hedge their bets, majoring in history and balancing out Napoleon or the Prussians with a minor in Innovation, Creativity and Entrepreneurship. The five-year-old program, the school’s most popular minor, requires students to learn the practical aspects of starting a business. It is a sign of change in liberal-arts colleges, which are grappling with the responsibility of preparing students for a tight and rapidly shifting job market while still providing the staples of academic inquiry.…

So administrators must convince professors. Andy Chan, who runs career services at Wake Forest, in Winston-Salem, N.C., and his team have met with more than 150 faculty members, and he has a staffer dedicated to initiatives such as encouraging history professors to bring students to the career-services office for webinars with successful alumni. Reception from faculty has been mixed.

Mr. Chan said calls he received from more than 30 schools asking about Wake Forest’s programs prompted him to organize a conference last month titled “Rethinking Success: From the Liberal Arts to Careers in the 21st Century.” It was attended by administrators from more than 70 schools, including Yale, Emory, Brigham Young and Stanford. “Many career directors at schools are feeling this pressure but are trying to figure out: How do we get our whole institution to get behind this?” Mr. Chan said.

USA Today

Grads maintain tradition of senior gift: College students may be taking on more debt, and unemployment rates may be daunting, but today’s economic realities haven’t stopped many graduating students from digging up a few more dollars to put toward a senior class gift. On some campuses, they’re giving in record numbers.…Wake Forest University seniors who donate $10 or more get a tour of the school’s otherwise off-limits bell tower and underground tunnel system.

Inside Higher Ed


The Liberal Arts and Leadership: Recent findings show that a liberal arts education may be a “significant contributor to the career success of leaders in the business, government and nonprofit sectors.” Mark Peltz, associate dean and director of career development at Grinnell College writes:

“…Today, perhaps more than ever, our nation’s leaders need to be able to strategically think and plan, deftly interpret changing global conditions, effectively marshal expansive resources and collaboratively guide teams of diverse people. Students at liberal arts colleges are challenged and supported to cultivate these skills throughout their coursework and co-curricular activities and then apply them during undergraduate research projects, volunteer experiences, and internships.

In today’s job market, many people are urging liberal arts colleges to refocus our academic efforts on career preparation. While those of us who lead career development programs at liberal arts institutions are very serious in our commitment to cultivating a dynamic learning community that allows students to grow and develop in remarkable ways, we also know that the educational experiences we offer are especially effective in fostering the enduring, broadly applicable skills needed for the workplace of tomorrow. In fact, the data presented here clearly illustrate that liberal arts graduates will not only be well-positioned for career success, but that many of them will be poised to become our nation’s next leaders.”

>>Read about statistics on leadership and liberal arts degrees

USA Today


Arrests in Fla. hazing death renew scrutiny of violent rite: In one of the largest hazing prosecutions ever, 13 people were charged Wednesday in the brutal hazing death of Florida A&M University drum major Robert Champion.…Gregory Parks, an assistant professor of law at Wake Forest University in North Carolina who has edited several books on Greek-letter organizations, also doesn’t expect the Champion case to deter would-be hazers. “This is a long, ingrained culture within these organizations, where violent hazing has taken place,” he said.