Here’s all the things you should never say to an arts student
A letter to all the ignorant people out there
"What are you going to do after uni?" "You are aware that you're not going to get a job aren't you?" "Why are you spending £9,250 a year to learn about stuff that's already happened?" "Your degree is such a sit off."
These are all things that have made students of History, Philosophy, English…and all those other 'useless' degrees roll their eyes. Quite frankly, it's getting boring. So please, sit down, shut up, and listen.
Dear non-arts students,
Firstly, it's time to jump down off your high horse. Stop trying to play the martyr. Just because you have longer contact hours does not make you inherently superior to us. Whilst our nine hours a week may not seem that arduous to you, I'd like to see how you'd cope with with reading about the intricacies of the Aztec Empire whilst also juggling Rousseau's complex Social Contract Theory and how Feminism can be applied to International Politics. Although, I guess plugging numbers into a calculator can get pretty tiring…you have my sympathies.
Secondly, listening to you tell me that I'm not going to get a job is like listening to a broken record. Believe it or not, I did research the course I wanted to do and I did come across the statistics for my job prospects after uni. I am not stupid, although, that's an assumption that most sciences students seem to make. The thing is, I don't care. I'd much rather spend my three years studying a subject that I actually enjoy than enduring something I hate purely for future economic gains. Moreover, you're more likely to excel at something that you're passionate about. The amount of times I've heard Engineering students drone on about how much they hate their course astounds me. If you hate the course, you'll probably hate the job, no matter how much money you earn. At least I'll be happy in poverty.
Finally, arts degrees are not sit-offs. They're difficult. The whole 'arts degrees are easy' narrative is harmful to students who pour their blood, sweat and tears into their work. I have nothing but respect for Fine Arts students who spend 24 hours working on a literal masterpiece in the studio. I admire those doing French, Spanish, German or Chinese who are actually fluent in another language. I take my hat off to English Literature undergraduates who have to read and analyse up to six books per term when most students haven't touched a book since they finished Of Mice and Men at GCSE. I'm making a stand. It's time that arts students get the recognition they deserve.
A disgruntled History student.
Photo Credit: Hazel Poole Zane @hazelartt (art pic)