Philosophy majors laud ‘queen of all sciences’

 13 0423 philosophy
April 23, 2013

An enthusiastic contingent of McDaniel Philosophy students connected with students and faculty from area colleges at McDaniel recently for a Philosophy symposium to hear Gettysburg College professor Steven Gimbel discuss his book, “Einstein’s Jewish Science,” and to celebrate the study of Philosophy.

Philosophy students were invited to the podium to share why they chose to study what has been called “the queen of all sciences.” Cinematographer and Communication student Van Pham’s film captures the essence of the students’ comments.

McDaniel Philosophy professor Vera Jakoby noted that a recent Wall Street Journal survey shows that Philosophy majors have one of the highest earning potentials in the humanities.

“That is not surprising since the study of philosophy stimulates creative thinkers who can take their place anywhere on the globe,” said Jakoby, who explains that she has always been fascinated by philosophy since it comes out of a deep sense of wonder about life, death, beauty, etc. “Our majors and minors are capable of not only critically analyzing information, but also of producing and refining knowledge in a reliable way.

“It promotes imagination, creativity and thinking ‘outside the box’ so that we can help solve world problems and design a humane, just and sustainable world.”

McDaniel Philosophy students – 106 with majors and minors in Philosophy in the past five years, including 26 majors and 8 minors currently – have gone into fields such as medicine, law, music, education, finance, administration, environmental sustainability, among others. Jakoby noted the college’s many successful Philosophy alumni, including Dr. Aaron Morehouse ’02, director of the Columbia Ecological Gorge Institute in Oregon; Chris Sava ’08, who started a career shortly after his graduation as an electronic components broker in Shanghai; Greg Street ’91, lead designer of World of Warcraft video game; Crystal Radford ’07, who is pursuing a Ph.D. in ethnomusicology and education at UCLA; James Diller ’04, who recently finished his Ph.D. in Psychology at West Virginia University; Lin Sun Oo ’09, a research assistant and program coordinator at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Burma.

“Our courses are rooted in global philosophical traditions and the intersections with culture, ethics, science, religion, technology, and more,” Jakoby said, mentioning such courses as the popular class on “Violent Media,” in addition to other courses, including “Minds & Machines,” “Philosophy and Music” and new courses for fall 2013 on “Plato’s Search for Knowledge,” Asian Philosophy, “Justice” and Native American Philosophy.