Liberal Arts Students Are Overachieving
Why do students choose to attend college? Getting a college degree is often seen as a ticket to a successful future. Does it matter what kind of college students attend?
It appears it does.
When it comes to building a foundation for future success, private liberal arts colleges seem to be doing it best.
Only 4 percent of undergraduates earn a degree from a private liberal arts college.
But, these graduates are over-represented when it comes to reaching highly regarded positions such as chief executive officers in business, U.S. presidents in government and Nobel Laureates in academia.
It’s likely that the unique combination of smaller classes, greater connection to faculty, and alumni support offered by private liberal arts colleges breeds success. It’s also true that the kinds of students drawn to these programs are typically curious and hard-working life-long learners interested in continual growth.
Whatever the reasons for their outsized success, private liberal arts graduates make up:
- 9 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs
- 27 percent of U.S. presidents
- 23 percent of U.S.-educated Nobel Laureates
- 14 percent of tenured Harvard law professors
In addition, six of the top 10 schools where the greatest number of students on a per capita basis continue their academic careers to pursue doctoral degrees are…liberal arts colleges.
Success with a Liberal Arts Degree
You will recognize the names of many well-known and successful liberal arts graduates, including:
- Conan O’Brien studied history and literature before becoming an Emmy Award-winning late night television host who writes and produces his material.
- Madeleine Albright studied political science and pursued several advanced degrees before working as a professor, translator, foreign policy advisor, United Nations representative and U.S. Secretary of State.
- George Soros studied liberal arts and philosophy before becoming a self-made billionaire and entrepreneur.
- Oprah Winfrey studied journalism and communications, and notably was fired from one television news reporting job, before becoming one of the best-known names in modern media.
The bottom line is that students who study liberal arts emerge as strong communicators with critical thinking skills, flexibility and a desire for further learning. All of these traits combine to make these graduates likely to succeed in many fields well into the future.
For more information about liberal arts colleges and the value of a liberal arts education, please visit LiberalArtsColleges.com.