29.11.05

THE HIGHER LEARNING. One university sees its future in vocationalism.

Many colleges in recent years have eliminated majors or departments in relatively obscure fields, citing the need to focus on areas with growing student interest. Few, however, have taken the step Post University plans: eliminating majors in English and history and upper-level courses in liberal arts generally.

Post, in Waterbury, Conn., was founded as a private university in 1890, and has always had a strong vocational orientation. The university has seen some radical changes in governance. In 1990, Post became one of several American colleges that affiliated with the Teikyo Group, from Japan. Post became Teikyo Post University. Last year, when Teikyo pulled out, private investors purchased Post and it traded in its nonprofit status to become a for-profit (and profitable) entity.

Now the university — with about 1,400 students — plans to stop offering liberal arts degrees and to focus on academic programs directly linked to careers. No full-time faculty members will lose their jobs. But there will be shifts in priorities for adjunct hiring — and part-time faculty members teach a major proportion of classes at Post.

Jon Jay De Temple, president of Post for the last five years, said that he believes the institution needs focus. “We’re not big enough to do everything for everybody,” he said.

De Temple said that based on that view, administrators and board members believe that majors that don’t “lead to a job” should be eliminated. He stressed that there would still be history and English instruction at the university, but said that there would not be any upper-level courses. “We’re probably not the best institution to turn out an English major,” he said.

The college hopes to shift resources to expand offerings in high-growth fields such as criminal justice, health services, and sports and entertainment. Post also wants to improve its well regarded equestrian program.

With such improvements, De Temple said that he thought Post could increase its enrollment of traditional-age college students from 625 to as many as 900.

Read and reflect. Wouldn't it be easier for those 625 to 900 people to apprentice themselves to firms rather than chase the credential?

The university describes its mission thus.
Post University is a career-oriented and student-focused university located in Waterbury, Connecticut. Post is known for its quality academic programs, small classes, national award winning student activities, and its NCAA Division II athletic programs. Our students pursue their personal and professional goals within academic programs supported by a dedicated faculty who blend both theory and practice within their classroom experiences. Become a part of the long tradition of private higher education in New England. Take the time to explore this web site and discover New England's value, Post University's career-oriented programs that focus on each student, every day.
I'm not sure what to make of a university website that allows a visitor to "View Course Cart."

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