Arts & Humanities Matter
Welcome to the pages of "Arts and Humanities Matter."
If you clicked on this page, it’s either because you think the arts and humanities do indeed matter, or because you’ve heard that they don’t matter (for any number of ill-founded reasons) and you are curious to see what the hullabaloo is about.
It has been my mission for the last year to keep up the chorus of a very simple proposition, and one that is borne out by the ages: the arts and humanities matter.
By extension, the School of Arts and Humanities matters because we involve our students not only in the preservation and transmission of our cultural heritage, but also in its transformation through critical thinking and creative expression. These are what are known as “transferrable” skills in the marketplace because we don’t just train our students for a job in the present, we educate our students so that they will be able to adapt to any number of challenges in the present and the future.
Here you’ll find information on a number of issues related to just how the Arts and Humanities Matter.
- You’ll meet our Arts and Humanities Committee, which consists of faculty, staff, and students from the School and other interested parties on campus.
- You’ll meet our Executive Advisory Council, community members with an abiding interest in our disciplines, along with their statements about how the arts and humanities have enriched their personal and professional lives.
- You’ll find statements of our departments’ Core Values, what each discipline sees as its essential contribution to a liberal education in the 21st century.
- You’ll find links to Talking Points, articles gathered from a variety of sources that outline the ongoing discussion about how the arts and humanities contribute to the economy, sustain the health of democracy, encourage creative entrepreneurialism, and maintain lasting personal and professional growth for a lifetime of learning.
- You can read David Coffey's inspiring 2012 Honors Convocation Address. David is the founder and owner of Modern Office Environments. He is a member of the Executive Advisory Council for the School of Arts and Humanities, the Board President of the Arts Council of Kern, and sits on the Board of the Bakersfield Museum of Art.
- You can read Ralph Lewin’s thought-provoking 2011 Commencement Address for the Schools of Arts and Humanities, Business and Public Administration, and Natural Sciences, Mathematics, and Engineering. Ralph is the CEO of the California Council for the Humanities.
- You’ll also find a link where you can join us in Giving Back to the Arts and Humanities with your time, influence, and money.
I’m told we live in challenging times for the arts and humanities, that there is a crisis. But crises are the very times for us to demonstrate how critical thinking and creative problem-solving contribute to the health and wellbeing of our society. This is what we have always done in the arts and humanities, and this is what we will continue to do with your help.
Please enjoy these pages and I think you’ll agree—Arts and Humanities Matter.
Professor of English
Dean of Arts and Humanities