From the Provost
Neil Weissman, provost and dean of the college
More than two centuries later, the college remains true to that mission. Our academic program draws on the inherited wisdom of the liberal arts and sciences but in a dynamic way that resonates powerfully with today’s challenges. What are some key characteristics of a Dickinson useful education?
Independence. Students are free to choose from among a broad range of courses and majors. Working closely with faculty advisors, each student builds a personalized academic program that best fits individual interests, abilities and future plans. Above all, students develop intellectual independence, the ability to chart one’s own course and the desire to continue learning after graduation.
Inquiry. Dickinson students engage in and enjoy debate and discussion, workshops, studio work and research—individually, in groups and, above all, with faculty. Our faculty members model this type of active learning. All are productive researchers or creative performers who see their scholarly work as energizing their classes and benefitting students. As one consultant noted, “At Dickinson, faculty really, really, really, really teach.”
Engagement. A Dickinson education is closely connected to the wider world. Students frequently take on fieldwork, study abroad and service learning. The curriculum combines traditional liberal-arts disciplines with new programs in fields ranging from neuroscience to law & policy. Moreover, the college is a leader on key issues such as global education and environmental sustainability.
Shaped by these characteristics, Dickinson’s academic program is a 21st-century embodiment of our founding mission. Our students receive a useful education that prepares them for meaningful lives, rewarding careers and leadership in the service of society. We measure the success of our program through our students’ placement and achievement in graduate and professional schools, the fellowships and scholarships they win, their career choices and accomplishments, their contributions as citizens to their communities and their continuing support of the college.