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Professor Andrew McRae, College of Humanities, and Professor Nayef H Samhat, Kenyon College.

Visiting the Liberal Arts in America

Professor Andrew McRae, Associate Dean for Education in the College of Humanities, visited Kenyon College in Ohio in March. This visit celebrated the Humanities’ longstanding relationship with Kenyon College through the Kenyon/Exeter English Study Abroad programme, and offered an opportunity to discuss Liberal Arts provision within Kenyon and other nearby colleges.

Founded in 1824, Kenyon is the oldest private college in Ohio, with alumni including a US President, multiple Pulitzer Prize winners, an Academy Award winning actor, and numerous writers, journalists, architects, scientists and even cartoonists. Kenyon College is ranked 32nd according to the 2013 US News and World Report Best Liberal Arts Colleges and is part of a consortium of five Ohio liberal arts colleges.

The visit comes as Humanities launches its’ Liberal Arts degree for 2013 entry.  A Liberal Arts degree is one of the strongest models of undergraduate education across North America. Modules on the Liberal Arts programme at Exeter have been carefully designed to explore the nature of learning, critical thinking and intellectual enquiry, and cover a range of humanities and social sciences, as well as study of a language. Liberal Arts also develops students’ intellectual and critical skills by engaging key issues, principles and debates underpinning contemporary global cultures, allowing students to ‘major’ in their chosen field of specialisation.

Professor McRae met with Professor Nayef H Samhat, Provost & Professor of International Studies and Political Science, and Marne Ausec, Director of the Centre for Global Engagement, to discuss extending the Kenyon/Exeter Study Abroad programme and to consider additional ways of developing the longstanding relationship.

The Kenyon/Exeter program was established nearly forty years ago, with the first group of students and Residential Director (visiting faculty from Kenyon) attending The University of Exeter in 1975-76. Typically there are approximately 15 students who come each year from Kenyon to study English at Exeter. The College is pleased that to announce that there will be a significant rise in numbers in 2013-14, with 24 Kenyon students due to study in Exeter in September. Moving forward this programme will also include students studying Drama and Film as well as English.

Professor Jesse Matz, Associate Professor of English at Kenyon and current Kenyon/Exeter Residential Director at Exeter, says:

“For so many years now, Exeter’s superb faculty, programs, and students have given Kenyon students matchless opportunities for immersion in British literary culture. Now with new collaborations in the works, we look forward to building upon Kenyon and Exeter's wonderful history of transformative cultural exchange."

To find out more about how to apply for a Liberal Arts degree, please see the Liberal Arts website.  To find out more about the Kenyon/Exeter Programme please see the College's Kenyon Programme webpage.

Date: 22 April 2013

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