The importance of a liberal arts education can also be observed from a point of view where it plays a larger constructive role, than is actually realised, in achieving the long-term socio-economic goals of developing countries. While analysing the same, the primary goals that a higher education system should aim at fulfilling is an important consideration. Some of these goals include offering an ideal platform where a modern society’s culture and values can be studied and further developed; providing the necessary training to people to contribute to the advancement of society and to develop their country’s political, economic & societal potential to the fullest.
Given the growth of knowledge at extraordinary rates, higher education systems must prepare students to develop the necessary abilities to manage and assimilate large quantities of information. However, the ability to learn, unlearn and relearn shall continue to deliver the necessary insurance against the notions of a rapidly changing economic environment.
Why relevant for developing countries?
A liberal education augments the chances of more fulfilling roles from individuals as responsible & educated citizens, trained workers for the industry, government, politics and academia, given that there is an ever-increasing demand from both developing and developed countries for the same.
Adding on, a liberal education takes the focus off narrowly focused disciplines and nurtures cohesion among colleagues from every discipline, promoting a civil society through its contribution to broad-mindedness, critical thinking, and communication skills – all elements being vital for an effective participatory democracy. Also, not to forget that providing in-country liberal education is far less expensive and more protective of India’s unique heritage than sending undergraduates abroad.
Though the liberal education has western roots, it is pertinent to realise that more than 1000 years ago, India created the first Liberal Arts education at Nalanda University. Apeejay Stya University (ASU) is therefore a pioneer & a restorer of an ancient tradition.
The goal is, however, similar for all countries – a broad, flexible, interactive education that addresses the whole human being. While striving to achieve this goal, the way is unique and cannot simply be uprooted from one country to another.
Institutions across India and abroad are already practicing liberal education. Apeejay Stya University, India’s first Liberal Arts and Meta University, promises to offer the best of graduate, postgraduate and doctoral courses, dedicated to churn out skilled professionals and future leaders fit for the competitive industry requirements and global challenges. ASU’s focus on research and technology sets it a class apart in its aim to deliver quality education across disciplines. ASU offers a strong interface with various industries and laboratories to facilitate research, project work and placements for students, leveraging the existing industry-academia linkages of other established Apeejay institutions of higher learning.