Winter 2017: Dean’s Message

Dean Ben Withers with English professor Camille Dungy, Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies Michael Carolan, Senior Associate Dean Alex Bernasek, and Professor of Economics Ed Barbier.

There’s no better evidence for how liberal arts enables lives of significance and purpose than our alumni. From studying our relationship with “trash” animals to a commissioned sculpture at The Hague, to the search for identity and belonging for an adopted daughter, you will find stories throughout this issue of alumni - and students - who demonstrate the diverse kinds of opportunities and choices the liberal arts empowers.

Some of those opportunities and choices were recognized recently at the annual Distinguished Alumni Awards event: Jim Vidokavich (’69) received the College of Liberal Arts Distinguished Alumnus Award while Polly Baca (’62) and former Dean Ann Gill (M.A. ’76), received university-wide awards recognizing their lifelong contributions through service and personal commitment to their communities.

The examples provided by our alumni inspire us to continue our pursuit of meaningful work for the college as well.

  • We continue to see that the issues and debates in our country and around the world will only be solved if we bring to bear an understanding of the human dimensions of critical social and cultural problems. For that reason, this year’s Great Conversations series began with a campus town hall that brought together a distinguished panel of faculty and alumni to discuss the increasing polarization we see in the world around us and what can be done to restore a more civil discourse.
  • We also need to build new approaches to old problems. Our recently created Vision for the College looks at ways we can leverage our strengths for future impact. As a public land-grant university, Colorado State has already made significant impact on the state and the world. The liberal arts can and must be a distinctive feature of how CSU defines its 21st century land-grant mission, a hallmark of how we see ourselves as a national leader and in service to the state.

The study of the liberal arts provides the skills and knowledge to align what we do for a living with our personal passions and dreams, as individuals and as members of a larger community. We here in the College of Liberal Arts are committed to producing future generations of alumni who turn meaningful work into meaningful lives.

Other College News:

Ed Barbier, renowned environmental economist, joins CSU

Lynn Boland, art historian, joins CSU as new director of the Gregory Allicar Museum of Art

Dept of Anthropology announces new Ph.D. program

Students can now pursue a bachelor's degree in Women's Studies

Keep up-to-date with all College News at CLA Source