A community of Shimer alumni, students, and parents gather for a campus event
The Shimer student body describes itself as “a community of risk-takers, idealists, outspoken men and women of the strongest character, and incredibly hard workers.” If you can imagine yourself among their ranks, we welcome you to discover all that a small liberal arts college has to offer!
Small colleges like ours offer big benefits. Even the most selective of parents have come to understand that such institutions keep their children’s personal and academic potential in safe hands.
Read on to discover how curiosity, employability, and more combine to make a liberal arts degree a choice any parent can support.
1. Liberal Arts and Humanities Courses Promote a Lifelong Love of Learning
A liberal arts education from a small, alternative private college prepares students like you to succeed in the long-term. It’s not just about the grades and undergraduate academic opportunities—liberal arts learning is about creating well-rounded, culturally engaged citizens who maintain open minds and curiosity throughout their lives.
Schools like Shimer pursue this goal by teaching students not what to think, but how to learn. Here, students learn the inherent value of critical thinking, questioning, and unending analysis.
“The kind of curiosity you’re endowed with here tends to spill over into every aspect of your life,” explains Shimer alumnus Michael Doherty. “Even though your formal education ends, your general interests seem to pick up with the same intensity that your schoolwork supplied.”
With a liberal arts education, graduation is just the beginning
2. Small Liberal Arts Colleges Encourage Both Work Ethic & Ethical Thinking
Humanities college courses facilitate challenging academic environments at top liberal arts colleges like Shimer. Each student’s scholarly success is dependent on their ability to work hard and challenge foundational ideas and assumptions about language, literature, philosophy, and their own human nature. It takes a solid work ethic to keep up with the intellectual weight this worthwhile course load entails.
Students here write critically and creatively, discuss and debate every thought and opinion they encounter, and work together among peers from diverse backgrounds to lead classroom discussions. They are also active participants in the school’s governance, where each student votes on issues that affect the entire campus community.
By the time students like you graduate from a college like ours, they are well-practiced in thinking beyond their own personal experiences to consider the perspectives of others. This is the kind of thinking that produces great leaders, and changes our communities for the better! Just look at Steve Jobs, Madeleine Albright, Oprah Winfrey, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu—all former students of the liberal arts and humanities.
3. Students of Small Liberal Arts College Are Positioned for Post-Grad Success
They develop the “soft skills” that employers across a wide range of competitive industries are looking for—from tech to law and beyond. Shimer alumnus Edie Barschi’s liberal arts education took her all the way to Wall Street, and now she’s an advocate for the value this kind of education brings to employers and employees alike.
“If one can think, if one can write, you can learn the other skills. You’re smart enough to take the training and learn the basic business or whatever the field is,” she explains. “But you can’t really teach someone to think differently… to come up with unique answers, to bring it a little bit further than ‘yes ma’am.’ And Shimer really helps you learn to do that.”
Here Shimer alumni reflect on how a liberal arts education prepared them for life after graduation:
Whether you want to launch a career right after graduation or go on to pursue further higher education, a liberal arts degree is an ideal place to start.
With so many academic, professional, and personal benefits to a small liberal arts college, what’s not for a parent to love?
Visit Shimer to learn more about getting started.