Astonishingly, we are required to take liberal arts classes to learn about our complex world in an intellectually challenging and productive setting. Why should I have to be pushed to learn that there are other people in the world who are affected by my actions? That I am not alone in my pursuit of happiness? And although I cannot expect this university to teach me all I need to know to live an informed and productive life in the 21st century, I am at least required, through a meager three liberal arts classes, to learn something about its diversity.
Without this requirement for understanding how extremely diverse we are, that there is such a thing as higher culture, USF will become nothing more than a trades school ? a diploma mill. Now the administration (as opposed to, I hope, the faculty) wants to chip away at what everybody loves to pay service to, ?the heart of the university,? the liberal arts program.
How much lower shall we stoop? How much more divided and individualized and alienated from one another must we become?
Looking at the budget for our football team compared to existent and nonexistent sports, or the padded leather chairs in our business building (as opposed to the hard plastic chairs throughout the rest of campus) gives a glimpse of where our priorities are: money, sports and cafeteria-style credit assemblages.
Verbally, our president and faculty are the strongest proponents of diversity, but I call them hypocrites if this reduction of exit requirements is allowed to pass. If this, the beginning of the end of the much-celebrated liberal arts requirement passes, the not-so-secret desires of our new Board of Trustees, reflecting the governor?s philosophy, will have been mightily advanced.
Rob Minshall is a senior majoring in biology.