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Johnson C. Smith University enhances Liberal Studies Program to meet the needs of today’s students and employers

Johnson C. Smith is laying a new foundation for its Liberal Studies Program to reflect the needs of today’s students and employers. After three years of study and discussions with faculty, alumni, students and administrators, faculty recently voted overwhelmingly in favor of the change.

The Liberal Studies Program covers the basic education requirements for all students. It is designed to graduate students whose skills allow them to communicate effectively, think critically and learn independently as well as collaboratively. It also provides exposure to a number of areas that allow students to engage with the world at large while helping them answer fundamental questions about their own identity and their place in the world.

To offer greater benefits to students, the program will offer more flexibility in course selection, reduce the credit hours from 51 to about 45. The program will consist of foundation courses and key pillars of study  that include humanities, integrated studies, global studies, and emergent fields, natural sciences, social and behavioral sciences, visual, performing and visual arts.

In addition, students will complete six additional credit hours from the key area of their choice.

“Our goal is to more closely align our general educational requirements with our mission of developing in our students the professional and social skills needed for their success in the workplace,” said Ronald L. Carter, president of Johnson C. Smith University. “Employers want individuals who can think creatively and for themselves, communicate effectively in writing and speaking and work collaboratively. We have refocused our program to address these critical needs.”

Adelheid Eubanks, director for the Center for Integrated Studies, Liberal Studies and professor of language and literature, called the changes “a big step for the University and a radical departure that has excited faculty.” The new requirements are scheduled to take effect in the 2013 fall semester for all students.

Founded in 1867, Johnson C. Smith University is the premier independent urban liberal arts university located in the heart of Charlotte, N.C. It offers a progressive liberal arts curriculum with 26 fields of study to more than 1,600 students. The University prepares students for success through excellent academic programs with a focus on servant leadership, civic engagement and global responsibility.          

Contact:
Sherri D. Belfield
Director of Communications and Marketing
704.378.1032 | sbelfield@jcsu.edu


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