Friday, March 7, 2014

The Benefits of Liberal Arts: Language Edition

Granada and the Sierra Nevadas
Without Fordham’s liberal arts core, I never would have dared to study abroad in Granada. Sure, I always wanted to go abroad, but Fordham’s emphasis on cura personalis and core curriculum made me realize that I could survive (and possibly thrive!) in a non-English-speaking country.

The core curriculum is a hallmark of Fordham’s liberal arts education. It requires all students to take courses in certain areas to expand their horizons, challenge them, and prepare them for life after Fordham. From speaking with high school juniors and seniors who are thinking about Fordham, I know this can seem intimidating. Heck, it was intimidating for me, too. But not only has my liberal arts education opened my eyes to interests that I never knew I had, a liberal arts education is also one of the most popular with employers.

At the Puente de San Martin in Toledo, just a bus ride away!
If I had not needed to fulfill my language requirement, it is entirely possible that I would never have considered studying Spanish after high school. I certainly wouldn’t be a Spanish major living in the most beautiful city in southern Spain. You may dislike foreign languages. You may be absolutely certain that you do not ever want to major in a foreign language. But how much do you know about urbanism or ethics? Have you ever thought of studying either of those subjects? They are two optional courses in the core curriculum, and you’ll never discover why that park is where it is or answer those burning ethical conundrums unless you try them out. And at some point or another, you are going to need those answers. At Fordham, you’ll find them, te prometo. ¡Hasta luego! 

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