President Barack Obama is taking a lot of heat for his recent snub of art history majors.
Speaking in Wisconsin late last month, Obama told the crowd that “folks can make a lot more potentially with skilled manufacturing or the trades than they might with an art history degree.”
“Now, nothing wrong with an art history degree — I love art history,” he quickly qualified. “So I don’t want to get a bunch of emails from everybody.”
So much for that. Since then, art history advocates far and wide have risen in defence of the study, and the president offered a handwritten apology to one professor who took particular offence to his comments.
While art history might not prepare students for coding-intensive careers at Google, it certainly teaches plenty of skills that employers value. We checked out career guides for art history majors at a number of universities to see what those are.
Here are 15 of the most important ones:
- Critical thinking and analysis
- Presentations and public speaking
- Strong writing skills
- Comfort adapting content for different audiences and users
- Intensive research
- Problem-solving and decision-making
- Attention to detail
- Time management
- Ability to work independently or in teams
- Listening and asking insightful questions
- Open mindedness
- Aesthetic and design consciousness
- Broad historical and cultural knowledge
Next time you’re looking for an employee, consider an art history major.
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