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The first compelling point Dominican illustrates is that private liberal arts universities can effectively serve the needs and interests of first-generation college students and students of color (respectively, 25% and 46% of our student body). This has been a deliberate commitment at Dominican, but it also demonstrates that broad-based and contextualized learning can be just as appealing and just as relevant as more narrow pre-professional programs to those students and families who are often under the most pressure to consider immediate return on their college investment. There is more to be done yet, in terms of our supporting students and educating potential employers in the community about the pragmatic utility of broad skill set in literacy, numeracy, and analytic thinking: one of the strategic initiatives we are focusing on University-wide is the development of more internship opportunities to more systematically connect classroom learning to workplace challenges.


Originally appear as Nicola Pitchford. "Breaking Down the Ivory Tower: The (Past and) Future of Liberal Arts Education" The Torch Jul. 2012: 8-15.