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Letters to the Editor

Well-rounded grads

December 24, 2009

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To the editor:

All citizens should beware the tell-tale sign of decline in a society: the inability or unwillingness to support study of the arts, language, philosophy, etc. Let’s be clear. The university is not a vocational training center. The focus of a liberal arts education is to produce citizens that not only possess skills, but also are well rounded in their knowledge.

Nurses must take a humanities course, and chemists must endure Western Civilization. Even with my education to the doctorate level in chemistry, I know little about the law. Thus I’m not much of an industrial chemist without lawyers. Lawyers help me protect my work and make a living. I left the field of nursing due to the way nurses are treated, inability to unionize in Kansas to demand adequate nurse-to-patient ratios, and I had ideas about medicine and technology that I wanted to pursue.

The law school should create a biotechnology patent law program to help me make money and pay lots of taxes in Kansas, not close its doors leaving me without support and thus looking elsewhere.

If you want an economical way to increase the number of nurses in Kansas, support our excellent technical schools and community colleges in the state. They produce great LPNs and associate degree RNs, who begin working, and paying taxes, quickly, but always have the opportunity to pursue more education at the larger institutions. Well, if we don’t close them down.

Comments

Thing 4 years, 3 months ago

Exactly what kind of a career is available to someone with a philosophy degree?

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Jacob123 4 years, 3 months ago

Yes where would the world be without crop after crop of whiney Marxist college grads who don't know how to change a tire.

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job4mike6 4 years, 3 months ago

-All citizens should beware the tell-tale sign of decline in a society: the inability or unwillingness to support study of the arts, language, philosophy.

"Market Education" letter of 22 Dec, did not argue he is unwilling or unable to support the study of arts, language, or philosophy. Rather, in times of economic resource constraints, leaders of the public university system should consider cutting research and academic programs with little relevance to the creation of better economic circumstances.

-The university is not a vocational training center.

"Market education" did not make this argument. Fewer programs does not mean students can only pursue vocational knowledge. Consider that no public university addresses every field. The question is which liberal arts education and research programs should Kansas regents ask taxpayers to preserve due to lower state revenues. Of those programs preserved, which should receive increased emphasis and which should be reduced? Health professions education (LPNs through MDs) should not be reduced to preserve research into dying languages because the latter is remote from creation of better economic circumstances and the former is essential.

3) The focus of a liberal arts education is to produce citizens that not only possess skills, but also are well rounded in their knowledge.

Agree but it does not refute the "Market Education" argument that in these difficult times for Kansas government, cutting research and academic programs with little relevance to the creation of better economic circumstances is preferable to cutting nursing and health professional programs.

4) The law school should create a biotechnology patent law program to help me make money and pay lots of taxes in Kansas, not close its doors leaving me without support and thus looking elsewhere.

"Market Education" did not argue the absence of a law school will prevent your business success. I claim your argument that closing the KU law school would deprive you of the services of an intellectual property lawyer ignores the reality of the oversupply of legal services in the USA and is therefore fallacious. 200 law schools are in the USA and nearly 143 thousand students currently enrolled for their JD. There are plenty of lawyers and many more in the pipeline willing to defend your property rights.

5) Well, if we don’t close them down.

More than 900 students are pursuing a JD degree at KU and Washburn. "Market Education" argues one or both law schools should be removed from public financial support—either by closure or divestiture to a private university. There will be no shortage of lawyers even if the law schools now supported by Kansas taxpayers are closed. The national supply of law education would be provided by 198 universities with 142 thousand enrolled JD students.

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Paul R Getto 4 years, 3 months ago

Good point. The 1960's distorted the system, when colleges went for the money and lowered their standards to keep students out of Vietnam. Education is for one's mind and soul, not specifically for the pocketbook. If the only interest is income, trade and technical schools will get you a license that should result in incomes at or above those of most college graduates. A return to the liberal arts for all would be beneficial.

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Richard Heckler 4 years, 3 months ago

Nightly Business Report recently produced a documentary illustrating the growing need in the health care industry of many areas to include LPN's and RN's. A variety of other positions is needing attention as well.

One point that which caught my attention was the need for bilingual graduates in many health care fields. Spanish and Russia are two of the top three languages in need.

This industry will continue to grow regardless of the insurance debate or outcome so it was said over and over. Humans require health care no matter what.

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