Forget the War on Christmas. There is a War on Liberal Arts Majors.
Florida Governor Rick Scott said several months ago that "if I'm going to take money from a citizen to put into education then I'm going to take that money to create jobs. So I want that money to go to degrees where people can get jobs in this state. Is it a vital interest of the state to have more anthropologists? I don't think so."
Easily, Governor Scott could be referring to music majors, acting majors, art majors, film majors, or broadcasting majors. Sadly, these are majors that do not lend to a vibrant and fruitful job market. Yet, there is a vastly growing competition to enroll students into these majors. The fact that job numbers in these fields are atrocious as all hell doesn't seem to stop the enrollment. Colleges, both non-profit and for-profit, are raking in the bucks on optimistic students. I should know. I was one of those students.
Now these students are coming out of college in great numbers with these degrees proudly in hand. But there's a problem. There aren't nearly enough jobs in any of the above industries to hire everyone who graduates with liberal arts degrees. This is forcing these students to take jobs in other fields, either temporarily or permanently. Take me for example. I have two degrees (Mass Communications and Video Production) on my wall. And I earned those degrees knowing damn well that I may never work in my field. In fact, many people who take on these majors feel the same way. That's fine. In fact, it's admirable.
Except, employers outside of these fields will not hire liberal arts majors.
Since I graduated from college, every job I ever applied for outside of television never went beyond a phone interview except for one. When I showed up for the interview, I was specifically asked why I would work an advertising job when I clearly had no interest in advertising in college. I explained that I actually did enjoy advertising and spent a great deal of my time writing advertisements and even sold commercials to local businesses. They stopped listening well before I started explaining this, and needless to say I didn't get the job. Not to mention, the receptionist informed her co-worker that she seriously hoped I didn't get the job.
Sadly, many employers associate liberal arts majors as "average kids who were too stupid to pick a real major like nursing." It makes me wonder whether or not our current high unemployment rate in America (standing at 8.9% as of this article) is exacerbated by this influx of twenty-somethings graduating with liberal arts degrees. With young adults generally not moving out of their parents homes later and later these days, it's becoming easier to stay unemployed and focus on their career while mom and dad continue to pay for the bills. This includes the student loan bill I'm sure they're loving paying for every month.
As an aside, I recommend reading this article 5 Facts About For-Profit Film Schools You Should Know if you are interested in attending or sending your children to a school of this nature.