Asked by students what kind of major she looks for in a successful job candidate, Rachel Maddow, the popular television host and best-selling author, did not hesitate in her answer. “I look for people who have done mathematics. Philosophy. Languages.
Studying the humanities in Silicon Valley At Stanford, only about 9 percent of undergraduate students major in a humanities subject—a surprisingly low number given a world-class faculty and programs that consistently rank among the top three in the country. Many incoming students are drawn to the boom in Silicon Valley and a career in the technology sector. In past years, the largest and fastest growing major on campus has been computer science, with class enrollments frequently exceeding 1,000 students.
Maddow, who noted that she likes “techies,” sees great value in an education in technology and engineering.
But she also insisted that an education in the humanities is equally, if not more, important. “We need people who are good at explaining facts, who are good at editing, and who can visualize things in creative ways. We need good artists and we need good writers.”
Above all, she said, we need people who can create things, who can come up with new content.
“It’s not to say that technological innovation is not a creative enterprise,” she added. “Google changed the world, absolutely. But it didn’t make the world. It organized it.
“And that’s great, but if you’re not creating things, and all you do is organize other people’s stuff, then you’re Wikipedia. And Wikipedia is awesome, but who is going to write the stuff that goes into Wikipedia?”
Nonetheless, Maddow praised technology for revolutionizing the way people can access content and locate facts: “The landscape for new cultural creation has never been richer because of technological and organizational advances.”
In the end, however, content creators win the day. “I need good writers rather than good web designers. And they are much harder to find.
Rachel Maddow urges students to master the art of argument
February 10, 2014 | 0 Comments