Must See TV: Linking the Liberal Arts to Life after College

As reported here, earlier this fall faculty from our department joined colleagues in English, Philosophy, and Political Science in putting on an exciting event for Bethel’s Homecoming. Entitled “Linking the Liberal Arts to Life after Bethel,” it brought back alumni from those departments now working in a variety of fields (pastoral ministry, nonprofits, writing/publishing, law, business, government) to have conversations with current students and recent graduates about how they connected their studies with their careers.

We started that event with a ten-minute video, produced by our own Sam Mulberry and Chris Gehrz, that featured four alums talking about their choice of major, their path to their current job (including, for three of them, how Bethel prepared them for law school), and what they see as the value of a liberal arts education in general and study in the humanities in particular. Our department was represented by someone already featured on this blog: Brandon Raatikka (’03), vice president of risk assessment at FactRight who followed his time at Bethel with a law degree from the University of Minnesota. He was joined by:

  • Michael Lawyer (Individualized Major, ’98), a lawyer for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development who had worked for faith-based nonprofits before going to law school;
  • Amy (Morris) Williams (English, ’07), a major gifts officer with Ecumen, the largest provider of senior housing and services in the Upper Midwest (note: Amy is married to History alum Peter Williams, ’04);
  • And former CWC TA Eva Rodelius (Philosophy/Spanish, ’09), a recent graduate of the University of Minnesota Law School currently serving as a a judicial law clerk with the Hon. Lawrence Johnson in Anoka, MN.

You can see the full video at our department’s YouTube page:

Here’s a taste of what Brandon had to say, about the value of a History major for someone entering the corporate sector:

I think that History majors should not underestimate their skill set…. History majors… have practice with writing, which is something that can distinguish you in the business world…. They have good experience dealing with things that aren’t black and white, being able to argue a position, being able to critically assess and problem-solve. I think that History majors don’t get enough credit for how creative they can be as well. So I think that any business would definitely appreciate the things that a History major can bring to the table.


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