Priority to the people: expanding STEM dept.

Letter to the Editor

The phrase “let’s get this degree” embodies the sentiment many, perhaps most, hold towards university.

To respond to last week’s “public school, private donors” editorial, this trend is not just at UVM and is not just the University’s fault.

As a group of people, Americans are very focused on the practical, and as such university is becoming an institution about the pursuit of a degree, not the pursuit of truth.

The University cutting funding to the humanities while simultaneously building a second STEM building is not just to keep up with other universities, but with the people attending them.

Just as there is cause for classes designed to identify students not cut out for mechanical engineering, there is cause for why there isn’t a class weeding out art history majors; engineering is our nation’s priority.

Just as I assume there are more engineers using Chegg to find the answers to their homework than not, I am sure that their reason for being here is less pure than the pursuit of truth as well.

Now this is not a “holier than thou” situation, because I am human, too and will have moments of weakness when I succumb to the pursuit of the degree instead of knowledge.

But we must remember our place within the system we’re in.

Strength lies in unity, not divisive rankings of each other.

On literally the next page there is a call to collective action with respect to environmentalism.

To collectively demand that the priority of our University be shifted against the predominant trend towards a more balanced education is something we need to spearhead.

The reason collective action is the solution is because it’s a cry from those in a system saying: “this is not the way it needs to be.”

They know that the system will continue as it does unless stopped, and they know without them the system will stop.

Without the students what is a university but empty rooms, a community abandoned?

Genuine change requires you to be willing to spend less time on Netflix and more time picketing; without skin in the game no game will occur.


Kieran Edraney ’21

B.S. computer science and