The Summer 2015 issue of Trinity magazine hits on a question posed to many liberal arts colleges: with a hard focus on vocations, jobs, and training in many schools across the nation, how will the liberal arts survive? Under the leadership of a new president, Trinity is poised not only to survive, but to thrive—examining closely the vision statement of the Trinity Tomorrow strategic plan: Trinity will redefine education for the 21st century.
Making the Cover: Watch as our photographers and illustrators paint the University’s story in Trinity’s “Making the Cover” feature.
Over the last few months, I’ve found myself increasingly having to defend my choice of a liberal arts education; the criticism, of course, is not limited to Trinity. The New York Times’ “The Decline and Fall of the English Major” notes that while humanities courses teach students how to write, they don’t satisfy a narrowing vocational emphasis placed on college majors. Even Forbes published a study claiming that rather than earning a liberal arts degree, it may be better to earn no degree at all.
All the while, articles such as “We don’t need more STEM majors, we need more STEM majors with liberal arts training” from The Washington Post and “Thinking outside the box: Our tech-driven future needs the skills of liberal arts graduates” from U.S. News & World Report have been steadily filling my inbox.
Is higher education a tool to equip people for their vocational roles in an ever-changing economy? Or is it an outlet to discover creativity, grow as a leader and a follower, and become well-rounded citizens of a global and interconnected world?
I am a Trinity graduate, so I would argue the latter. But how?
Yet these articles, while encouraging and eloquent, don’t personalize the liberal arts and sciences educational experience. They certainly don’t speak to Trinity’s “flavor” of the liberal arts—mixing humanities, social sciences, life sciences, and fine arts with business, engineering, education, and entrepreneurship.
So Trinity magazine set out to do just that. Reader, I hope you take the stories in this issue to heart, combine them with stories of your own, weave in the powerful, poignant words of our new president and our incredible faculty, and use them the next time you’re asked why you chose a liberal arts path—maybe even why you hope your children will choose one as well.
Speaking of our incredible faculty, this issue holds Trinity magazine’s last “Faculty & Staff Spotlight,” but these honors will soon find another home. In an effort to more prominently emphasize the achievements of Trinity’s faculty and staff, the University will be releasing its inaugural issue of IMPACT: Scholarship, Creativity, and Community Engagement at Trinity University in September 2016.
As we applaud the efforts of those who taught, mentored, and supported us, we must always remember: we are Tigers at heart. We are educators and entrepreneurs, scientists and business people, innovators and scholars. We have been, and truly remain to be, a university of the highest order.
Send comments, ideas, or suggestions to jgoodri1 [at] trinity.edu or Jeanna Goodrich Balreira, One Trinity Place, San Antonio, Texas 78212. Letters may be edited for style and space considerations.
On page 8 of the current issue, Mario Gonzalez-Fuentes is listed as a finance and decision sciences professor. Gonzalez-Fuentes is a marketing professor in the Department of Business Administration.
On page 51 of the current issue, In the Cass Notes “In Memoriam” section, Lisa Stegall '79 was mistakenly listed as Lisa Coody Stegall.