Ronald J. Daniels, president of Johns Hopkins University, urged students to take Humanities courses "as a foundational preparation for a life well lived" in this commentary published by The Washington Post.
"By all means, students should take courses they deem practical and follow their interests," Daniels wrote, "but if they also make a point of studying the literature of the Harlem Renaissance, or delving into modern poetry, or even taking introductory philosophy, we will all benefit."
"When students, and graduates, inevitably face moments of ethical decision-making, of sorting fact from fiction on social media, and of reconciling individual aspirations with obligations to their communities, they would be aided by the habits of discernment and deliberation that have distinguished the humanistic tradition for centuries," he wrote. "Perhaps best of all for the country is the vital role played by humanistic inquiry in the development of better, more informed, more capable citizens."
Daniels also argued that "contrary to the widely held belief that humanities majors have a hard time getting jobs, recent studies show that those with humanities degrees are thriving in the workplace, experiencing low rates of unemployment and reporting high levels of job satisfaction."