What is College For? Thinking about Purpose in Changing Times

A college education is distinguished from other kinds of education because it embodies ideals distinct from the rest of students’ lives. If we take college seriously, we need students to spend a good amount of time on campuses isolated from the world so that they can cultivate their intellect. Students should leave college different than when they entered. The best test of a good college education, therefore, is whether a student has been transformed.

Lecture Description

What is college for? Is it to prepare us for a career? For life? Is it to teach us skills? And what, specifically, is the purpose of a liberal arts education, where students, regardless of major, are asked to take classes in fields such as history, English, biology, and other disciplines. At a time when more and more Americans are going to college, Neem asks us to consider what kind of education will best serve the needs of individuals, our democracy, and our economy.



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