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STEM Is Important, But Let’s Not Forget About the Humanities

There's no doubt that advanced technology is the future, but just because studying STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) can lead to lucrative careers, doesn't mean that business no longer has any use for the humanities. We'll take a look at why society's obsession with STEM is blinding us to the importance of the more human side of business now and in the future.

There’s no doubt that advanced technology is the future, but just because studying STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) can lead to lucrative careers, doesn’t mean that business no longer has any use for the humanities. We’ll take a look at why society’s obsession with STEM is blinding us to the importance of the more human side of business now and in the future.

Ten reasons to study the humanities

(Photo Credit: Ben Husmann/Flickr)

In his article for The Washington Post, Fareed Zakaria takes an in-depth look at America’s obsession with STEM and the dangers that come with being too narrow-minded in our pursuit of education.

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“A broad general education helps foster critical thinking and creativity,” writes Zakaria. He goes on to say, “Exposure to a variety of fields produces synergy and cross fertilization,” which is crucial to innovation of every kind.

Consider, if you will, what an employer looks for in a well-rounded candidate, regardless if the job is technical in nature or not. Typically, employers want to see that potential employees possess the technical/hard skills to get the job done, but they also want to see that these individuals have great communication skills and work well in team settings, because that’s half of the battle for many occupations.

“No matter how strong your math and science skills are, you still need to know how to learn, think and even write,” says Zakaria.

Still need more convincing? Clayton State University’s Humanities Department published on its website 10 reasons why students should study the humanities. All apply to your career in some shape or form. For instance:

  • Practicing analytical skills makes you a better student … and employee.
  • Learning about other cultures helps you develop a global perspective, which is essential in today’s marketplace.
  • Studying great thinkers provides inspiration and lays the groundwork for innovation.

Probably the most basic and primal reason for keeping the humanities alive is that we are human, after all. Until computers take over the world, we must preserve both the human side and the technical side of life, business, and relationships to create the balance we need to keep on keeping on successfully. 

Tell Us What You Think

Are you pursuing or have a humanities degree and have something to add? Share your insights with our community on Twitter or in the comments section below. 

Leah Arnold-Smeets
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