Tag Archives: liberal arts

6 Secrets to Breaking into the Tech Industry with a Liberal Arts Major

devon-headshot-blackwhite-bw (1)From Devon Hopkins ’11:

Don’t think you have the skills to work in the tech industry? Think again. From a dance and psychology major at Wesleyan to a Director of Marketing at a 200-person software company, presenter Devon Hopkins will share how to use your liberal arts background to land a job at a tech company.

*Learn resume best practices for technology companies
*Learn about the different employment opportunities for small to mid-size technology companies
(including Devon’s current company, NGP VAN)
*Get your questions answered by an actual tech company hiring manager

Devon Hopkins ’11 is the Director of Inbound Marketing for NGP VAN, the leading provider of technology to political and progressive campaigns. He runs the marketing team for EveryAction, the company’s software platform for nonprofit fundraising, email, and advocacy.

Date: Wednesday, February 18th
Time: 5:00PM – 6:00PM
Place: Interwebz

An Interview with Film Studies Department Head, Professor Jeanine Basinger

“You’re having conversations about movies and about the work and about questions and disagreements… there’s so much that grows out of that so when someone graduates you’re not through talking to them yet about it all.”

Basinger is here pictured in the Goldsmith Family Cinema. This picture was taken from New York Times Article featuring her book "The Star Machine," about the height of the studio system in the 30s through 50s

Basinger is here pictured in the Goldsmith Family Cinema. This picture was taken from a New York Times Article featuring her book The Star Machine, about the height of the studio system in the 30s through 50s [Source].

As a newly admitted film major, one can imagine the anx-citement surrounding this interview. Jeanine Basinger, who is on record as “one of the most important film scholars alive today” and who built Wesleyan’s world renowned film program from the bottom up, is a name I have learned to revere since day one as a prospective film student. At the scheduled time, I dialed Professor Basinger’s office to be greeted with enthusiasm and an eagerness to get right to business. She expressed her hope that her husband would bring her a cup of coffee amidst her busy workday and we jumped right into the questions. She made the interview very easy for me, answering with depth and segue-ing effortlessly into questions I hadn’t even asked yet. We discussed the establishment of the College of Film and the Moving Image, which was announced just over a year ago, the liberal arts approach to cinema, and her relations with past film majors. By the end of the half hour, I was feeling reenergized, inspired, and more excited than ever to begin my journey as a Wesleyan University film major with Professor Basinger as a guide.

The following is the transcript of our interview, edited for clarity.

Could you tell me about the College of Film and the Moving Image – why the initiative was taken on and what differences it brings to the department?

The interesting thing is that all of the components that make up the college are things that we have in fact been doing for years. The designation of making it into the college is less of a change and more of a recognition of what we are and what we do.

The College Bubble: A Higher Ed Round-Up

This begins a weekly[ish] piece presenting recent articles on college and higher education news and issues. 

Just in time for the return of ridiculously expensive trips to Broad Street, U.S. PIRG has put out a study revealing the adverse effects of high text book costs on students’ (especially low-income students’) course decisions, and subsequently, their grades. There’s no other way to say it – this is a f****ed up system.

Career Center Showdown: Steve Koppi Believes in the Liberal Arts

The Career Center’s seeking a new director. In a three-part series, we’re reporting from the front lines.

Steve Koppi, the first of three applicants for the position of Wesleyan’s Career Center Director, spoke to a small group of inquisitive Wes students and faculty last night in 41 Wyllys. Koppi is the former director of both Mount Holyoke College and Gallaudet University’s Career Centers. If hired, he would replace Michael Sciola, who left Wesleyan in 2012 to become associate vice president for advancement and director of career services at Colgate University.

Koppi spoke eagerly on the benefits of the liberal arts education we’re all so happily receiving. Koppi argued that our generation’s employers are placing more and more emphasis on essential skills that the liberal arts education offers—including writing, reasoning and social/interpersonal skills. It is these skills that Koppi hopes to draw on if he were to be given the opportunity to get us some jobs (and oh, how we need them).

Roth on the Value of a Liberal Arts Education

As the president of an elite liberal arts college, Michael Roth is obviously biased in extolling the virtues of attending such an institution, but his latest Huff Post column is somewhat reassuring in these cautiously optimistic times:

…There is a promise of freedom in the liberal arts education offered by America’s most distinctive, selective, and demanding institutions; and it is no surprise that their graduates can be found disproportionately in leadership positions in politics, culture and the economy. A quick look at several members of President-elect Obama’s leadership team can stand as an example of how those with a liberal arts education are shaping the future of our society.

…The possibilities for free study, experimentation and risk taking need protection and cultivation. Looking around the world, we find no shortage of thugs who desecrate or murder those who seek to produce a more meaningful culture. And here at home we can easily see how mindless indifference to the contemporary arts and sciences facilitates the destruction of cultural memory and creative potential.

America’s great universities and colleges must continue to offer a rigorous and innovative liberal arts education. A liberal education remains a resource years after graduation because it helps us to address problems and potential in our lives with passion, commitment and a sense of possibility

Yeah, it’s basically an extended brochure for prospective Wes students, but such positive thinking might be helpful when these thoughts are keeping you up at night.

Huffington Post: What’s a Liberal Arts Education Good For?

White People Love/Hate the Ivy League

Ok I’m just a sucker for Stuff White People Like, but last week’s entry, The Ivy League, is too spot on not to share:

White people have a tortured relationship with the Ivy Leagues, and if you broach the subject in the wrong way you can offend and even anger a white person.

But before getting into the more nuanced aspects of the subject, it’s important to know that all white people believe they have the intelligence and work ethic required to attend an Ivy League school. The only reason they did not actually go to one is that they chose not to participate in the “dog and pony show” required to gain acceptance… This should always be at the back of your mind as you talk to a white person about the Ivy League.

Once you have determined that a white person did not attend an Ivy League School, you should try to give them the opportunity to explain why their school was actually a superior educational experience. Some easy ways to do this are to mention grade inflation, professors who value research over teaching, or high tuition costs. Any one of these will set a white person off on a multi-minute rant.

…White people also like to call their school “The Harvard of the [insert region or conference]”. Do not challenge this, it will ruin their confidence.

Replace “white people” with “elite New England liberal arts school students” and it is just as effective. Sorry if this post offends you, either as a white person or as a Wesleyan student.

Stuff White People Like: The Ivy League

Most Annoying Liberal Arts College

Oh dear. It seems we’ve been given the dubious honor of being listed among the nation’s Most Annoying Liberal Arts Colleges by Gawker. The voting begins tomorrow. Though, fortunately, they are accepting write-ins if anyone’s interested in mentioning our oft-neglected NESCAC brethren. I mean, they have their tired stereotypes, too, you know.

  • Bard: Upstate New York haven for rich, disaffected filmmakers, writers, grade-skippers and artists.
  • Bennington: Hippie haven in Vermont with optional grades and lots of “creative” types. (Bonus: Bret Easton Ellis went there. Then, so did Jared Paul Stern.)
  • Brown (honorary liberal arts college): Eurotrash and rich hipster magnet in Providence, R.I.
  • Hampshire: This “non-traditional” college in Amherst, MA calls itself “experimenting.” Whatever that means.
  • Kenyon: There’s not much to do here besides go drink in the Ohio woods. Also, maybe too preppy for our list, maybe.
  • Oberlin: Asked and answered.
  • Reed: They’re smarter than you. Just ask. Even though they’re baked. Also: West Coast represent!
  • Sarah Lawrence: Breeding ground of coked-up artsy heiresses and the lone faggy heir.
  • Smith: Lesbians and the LUGS who love them.
  • Vassar: Favorite of budding editorial assistants everywhere. Male population: See under Sarah Lawrence.
  • Wesleyan: Our instinctive favorite to take the crown, if only because if we have to hear about one more awesome party at Eclectic we might slit our wrists. Also, heroin is all fun and games until you can’t get out of rehab, isn’t it.
  • EDIT: Clearly Vassar wants the glory just that badly.

    EDIT 2: Okay, some Wesleyan students too. (WHY??)

    …Guys. This is not a pissing contest we want to win.

    What the future holds

    This Newsweek column came out way back in November, but somehow we missed it. Recent grad Caitlin Petre ’06, a Philosophy major, wrote a piece called “The Lessons I Didn’t Learn in College”.

    Summary: Taxes suck, we’re screwed.

    Bonus: If you roll over the UPS ad, you get to watch an enthralling commercial about international shipping featuring the first 30 seconds or so of Such Great Heights by the Postal Service. Ha! Ha!

    All this raises a disturbing question: when I spent a ton of time and money on my fancy degree, what exactly was I buying? The ability to think, some might say. OK, fine, that’s important. Still, my résumé would look odd if it read, “Skills: proficient in French, word processing, thinking.” The thinking I did in college seems to be of limited utility in the “real world.” The fact that I wrote a 30-page critical analysis of the function of shame in society did nothing to ease the sting when I spilled beer on a customer at the bowling alley.

    Wesleyan is ranked #3…by Washington Monthly

    Washington Monthly Ranking Liberal Arts College

    State U.S. News Ranking
    1 Bryn Mawr College PA 21
    2 Wellesley College MA 4
    3 Wesleyan University CT 12
    4 Haverford College PA 8
    5 Amherst College MA 2
    6 Mount Holyoke College MA 23
    7 Claremont McKenna College CA 10
    8 Williams College MA 1
    9 Whitman College WA 36
    10 Swarthmore College PA 3

    (more)