I agree with your recent editorial pointing out the ill-wisdom of adding science and math requirements to the SFS core (“Maintain the SFS Core,” THE HOYA, Feb. 4, 2005, A2).

Employers and graduate schools expect Georgetown SFS graduates to be kind of like diplomats, whether or not we ultimately become diplomats. They are impressed by our fluency in languages, international outlook, knowledge of history and politics, familiarity with art and flexibility. No one really cares whether we can do basic calculus problems or remember something from “Science in our Daily Lives.”

If the SFS were to add math and science requirements, it is quite possible that even more people would leave Georgetown lacking basic art and music knowledge and with fewer languages under their belts.

People in leadership positions in corporations, academia, NGOs and Washington, D.C. talk about ideas – art, history, books, music, the list goes on – not about math or things like that.

While math is important for the business school students who actually work as accountants, it is irrelevant for the sort of futures SFS students envision for themselves.

Georgetown and the SFS sometimes pretend to be classy and unique. Maybe the school should for once follow through by ending this tired, banal math-science debate.

We should be discussing how we could enhance our humanities requirements: more art history and music history requirements are essential and mandating solid knowledge of a second foreign language would be delightful.

Why do this? For the simple reason that language and humanities knowledge is more important for SFS graduates five years post-college than fuzzy, half-forgotten math and science knowledge.


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