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Re: Plano Campus

Postby 1017 Mustang » Tue Mar 13, 2018 1:43 pm

gostangs wrote:
Liberal Arts - Pretty strong, but with the exception of economics and the sciences, not fields that are growing and are in fact shrinking. Why pay 200k plus to be a history major?
Simmons Education - Emerging as a great school and there is demand for education - but obviously the math is tough. 200k for undergrad degree for jobs that pay 40k tops is a rough equation.
Meadows school of the arts - nationally known in certain key portions but could use more improvement across the board. A historical strength for SMU though.


I agree with most of what you're saying gostangs and I especially appreciate your agreement with me 8)

but I would argue that our strengths in Dedman outside of the hard sciences (which I agree need more significant investment), Meadows (especially the advertising, journalism and music)--and possibly Simmons can lead to a HUGE boost in our rankings as well.

While our business school undergrads are definitely desirable--most of our reach competitor schools (Ivy League/Stanford level) push people without business majors into top companies and prominent graduate school programs. I think we should do a better job of marketing that option to our graduates. Especially the social science research and math based Dedman classes. Behavioral science is a huge field in business that's basically applied psychology. But the multi-disciplined liberal arts background is something that SMU does really well in comparison to our Texas peers--and it's something that business recruiters and top grad schools are yearning for currently.

Many of our most famous young alumni are from non-science Dedman majors:
Whitney Wolf studied International Relations
Hope Hicks studied English
Blake Mycoskie majored in Philosophy
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby deucetz » Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:48 pm

1017 Mustang wrote:
gostangs wrote:
Liberal Arts - Pretty strong, but with the exception of economics and the sciences, not fields that are growing and are in fact shrinking. Why pay 200k plus to be a history major?
Simmons Education - Emerging as a great school and there is demand for education - but obviously the math is tough. 200k for undergrad degree for jobs that pay 40k tops is a rough equation.
Meadows school of the arts - nationally known in certain key portions but could use more improvement across the board. A historical strength for SMU though.


I agree with most of what you're saying gostangs and I especially appreciate your agreement with me 8)

but I would argue that our strengths in Dedman outside of the hard sciences (which I agree need more significant investment), Meadows (especially the advertising, journalism and music)--and possibly Simmons can lead to a HUGE boost in our rankings as well.

While our business school undergrads are definitely desirable--most of our reach competitor schools (Ivy League/Stanford level) push people without business majors into top companies and prominent graduate school programs. I think we should do a better job of marketing that option to our graduates. Especially the social science research and math based Dedman classes. Behavioral science is a huge field in business that's basically applied psychology. But the multi-disciplined liberal arts background is something that SMU does really well in comparison to our Texas peers--and it's something that business recruiters and top grad schools are yearning for currently.

Many of our most famous young alumni are from non-science Dedman majors:
Whitney Wolf studied International Relations
Hope Hicks studied English
Blake Mycoskie majored in Philosophy


In a nutshell this is SMU's dilemma. It is a private liberal arts school in state full of public schools. The majority of people educated in TX do not know how liberal art skills translate into the real world. This is much different from the east coast, and even in California where there are many liberal art schools and many of the people hiring are familiar with them.

SMU needs to do a better job promoting and explaining it. I went to a top 10 US News school, and liberal art majors end up doing everything under the sun. I knew a history major that ended up being an accountant--after going to grad school to take a one year masters in accounting. I have a friend that majored in sociology that ended up becoming a computer programmer at Microsoft without taking a single comp science class in college. Top schools primarily place grads in: graduate school (med, law, PhDs), finance, consulting, and general business management programs in the Fortune 500.

I think SMU's issue in marketing partially stems from the administration and staff. Many are from the South, went to a large public school, and they are also ignorant about the benefits of a liberal arts school. A great liberal arts education teaches you how to think, write, communicate, and solve complex problems. This skill translates in almost every field. Rice does a good job.
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby dr. rick » Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:02 pm

I completely agree with 1017... we are trying to teach our kids (I am old enough to call them kids, LOL) to think, critical thinking... this is the key to a university education vs a trade school. that said, i think that our undergraduates are better than our graduate students (i talked with a chaired professor at Wharton (U Penn if you did not know), and he had same comment - 9 of 10 best papers in his course were from undergraduates - they just want it more). why are we low? look at the decision criteria. Cox was highly rated until they changed the criteria. Most favor large schools over small schools. the reason that cox keeps ringing the gpa isn't that we don't want more students... it is the fact that we do not get any money for undergraduate students (it is all taken by the university). So, we end up with large classes (which hurts rankings)
don't get me started about class sizes and resources. Cox has 25% of students and 12% of faculty. we have problems filling classes because we do not have enough faculty (or enough rooms)... IMHO, we should go to the MIT model, where the number of courses is unimportant, the key metric is the number of students and credit hours. in this model, an English professor teaching 12 students in a class is not the same as a finance professor teaching 70 students in a class.
i feel better and will get off my high horse.. LOL
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby Greenwich Pony » Fri Mar 16, 2018 11:04 am

I have a liberal arts degree from SMU and I do use the skills every day, with a very wide variety of clients. A good liberal arts degree is about learning to gather, analyze and communicate information quickly and accurately. In a world of rapid change in technology and thought, these are critical skills and SMU teaches them well.

I talk with people at USNWR, Fiske, Princeton Review and a number of people in educational media on a regular basis for clients and I keep getting the same basic story back - that basically we're stagnant and lack direction. Some of this is just down poor marketing and public relations. Some of this is that our resources do not seem to be keeping pace (endowment and library resources, for example) with the competition despite the building boom. The biggest hit seems to be that we are neither on the forefront of anything, nor do we as a university seem to create as much scholarship as other schools. This may be more about perception than truth (a few contacts have made this clear), but it still hurts us. The building of the new research center will help, but is nowhere near enough. The loss of the university press (small that it was) had an outsized impact. That we don't have a defining "personality" (at least not in the positive sense) academically seems to hurt us as well. For example, UTD is pushing itself to be an MIT style business and science school (it's not there, but it touts this goal frequently, the brand has definition and aspiration).

Three interesting conversations regularly had: 1) The Bush Library which seems to be seen as an overall plus long-term but thus far tepidly supported by the university with supporting academic programming (no really strong visible academic initiatives utilizing the center, no new special degree programs, etc. The Presidential History Center seems to lack profile or support). If kinks are worked out this could be a significant asset. 2) The residential commons which seems to be more Princeton-style than anything else may be a major plus going forward but is not being sold enough. 3) That the Dallas Metroplex does not really support education. I believe Dr Rick had a good point earlier on this thread that a number of cities maintain two or even three top institutions at the same time, which is true and would be great except that Dallas currently supports none. Considering the alleged wealth of the area and the number of Fortune 500's HQ'd in and around Dallas, we should theoretically be resourced and supported far more than we are. Consensus seems to be that some of this is poor PR, outreach and town-gown relations which is our fault, and some of this may just be Dallas. We have essentially been the only game in town for years, and Dallas is the largest metro area in the country without a top institution of higher education.

Since I have been complaining a bit more than usual, there are a few positives I'm hearing. The building program has created some good new facilities. The new supercomputer is generating some buzz. Our graduates seem to outperform many of our peer and aspirational schools. There is a ton of talk of untapped potential, so it's not that we seemingly can't; it's that we don't.
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby Junior » Fri Mar 16, 2018 11:16 pm

Greenwich Pony wrote:I have a liberal arts degree from SMU and I do use the skills every day, with a very wide variety of clients.

Yes, I do want fries with my order.
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby One Trick Pony » Sat Mar 17, 2018 6:22 am

Junior wrote:
Greenwich Pony wrote:I have a liberal arts degree from SMU and I do use the skills every day, with a very wide variety of clients.

Yes, I do want fries with my order.

Curly or regular sir?
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby Greenwich Pony » Sat Mar 17, 2018 6:32 pm

I said SMU, not TCU...
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby ponyboy » Sun Mar 18, 2018 3:38 pm

Liberal arts here as well. And I’ve done ok, career-wise. Again, hate to sound snarky, but do you want a trade school diploma or a university education?
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby gostangs » Sun Mar 18, 2018 6:32 pm

ponyboy wrote:Liberal arts here as well. And I’ve done ok, career-wise. Again, hate to sound snarky, but do you want a trade school diploma or a university education?


You could also say if I'm paying 200k for an education, I want to buy an education that includes a skill set that is worth something, instead of having to go get a graduate degree to feed myself.

Say what you want, but half our university comes for the business school, so it is in our collective best interest to keep it at the top. We will need a TON more scholarship dough, particularly in our MBA program to just stay even.
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby Greenwich Pony » Sun Mar 18, 2018 7:46 pm

I agree we definitely need to keep the B school high in the rankings. Just pointing out that a good liberal arts degree isn't inconsequential. No, not every philosophy, English or history major does philosophy, English or history, but the skill set taught can be extremely vital in a fast-changing world.
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby horsemanx » Sun Mar 18, 2018 8:37 pm

Can we put our amazing conflict resolution degree in Cox? :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby tristatecoog » Mon Mar 19, 2018 11:02 pm

https://poetsandquantsforundergrads.com ... ms-2017/4/

SMU Cox BBA was ranked #19 in 2017. Academic experience came in at #27 and employment was #34.
For comparison, #15 Wake Forest was easier to get into (#20) but had better experience and employment scores.
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby midwestpony » Tue Mar 20, 2018 12:43 pm

tristatecoog wrote:https://poetsandquantsforundergrads.com/2017/12/05/poetsquants-best-undergraduate-business-programs-2017/4/

SMU Cox BBA was ranked #19 in 2017. Academic experience came in at #27 and employment was #34.
For comparison, #15 Wake Forest was easier to get into (#20) but had better experience and employment scores.


yes gotta believe that has to deal with the fact my average busienss class has 50 students - can affect the experience. Also, need better recruiting from theschool have to believe that is more of a staff issue/ some employers only look at overall school rank, smu as a whole rather than Cox, when they recruit.
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby dr. rick » Tue Mar 20, 2018 2:01 pm

Okay, i'll get on my high horse again... LOL) so why are the b-school classes so large? we do not get a nickle for any undergraduate student. if the school was more like UTD, we would expand undergraduate majors and education. I have friends at UTD, and they get money for each undergraduate - so they have incentive to expand these programs. what is the incentive to expand these programs when we are using faculty time and getting nothing in return? we are understaffed in finance (the majority of majors) and have a hard time getting them hired. it is not the faculty, it is provost and president. I am done venting, LOL)
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Re: Plano Campus

Postby ponyboy » Tue Mar 20, 2018 10:04 pm

Greenwich Pony wrote:...a good liberal arts degree isn't inconsequential. No, not every philosophy, English or history major does philosophy, English or history, but the skill set taught can be extremely vital in a fast-changing world.


Not just that, but life ain't all about earning a buck.
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