Why the Liberal Arts?

Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges

Recognizing the importance of liberal arts and sciences education for success in a complex global society, the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges (COPLAC) is championing the cause of liberal arts education of superior quality in the public sector. COPLAC institutions provide students of high ability and from all backgrounds access to an outstanding liberal arts education.

Why choose a Public Liberal Arts College? UMW is one of 27 colleges in 25 states and Canada that belongs to the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges (COPLAC).


“One of the missions of liberal arts colleges is to teach students how to think, talk and write.”

“People skills can come from a well-rounded education that makes you a more interesting person. If they are going to go anywhere with their careers, they will have to have people skills.”

“Showing how the liberal arts curriculum as a whole leads to questioning, analytic, and critical thinking that stands recipients in good stead wherever their lives may lead and on whatever career paths they follow.”

“It’s an opportunity to explore history, philosophy, psychology—your basic liberal arts and science courses—rather than getting into a track where they have to take specific courses that train you for a career.”

Top reasons to attend liberal arts colleges:

  • Student focused
  • Small class size
  • Great preparation for graduate school
  • Employers value liberal arts students

Survey Information:

Employer Survey Slides

Essential Learning Outcomes from AAC&U

Business leaders recommend a 21st-cetury liberal arts and sciences education to prepare for long-term professional success in today’s global economy. See report from AAC& U:

It Takes More Than a Major: Employer Priorities for College Learning and Student Success