Why Study in the College?

You have a lot of options when it comes to choosing the best path toward your future. So why major in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences?

As the Heart of KU, the College is home to more than 50 departments, programs and centers at the University. We are the largest, most diverse school at KU and offer more than 100 majors, minors and certificates. In the College, you have the most opportunities to explore as many subjects as you like and find your future. The College offers you the flexibility to complete your degree your way. 

Follow your passion

Think about the things that give you joy. The experiences that challenge you and give you purpose. That’s the pathway for your future. Studies prove that majoring in what you’re passionate and curious about will keep you motivated in college and more successful and satisfied in the future.

The Heart of KU is the home of seekers, innovators, creators, helpers, challengers, researchers and improvers. At its core, we are a curious and compassionate community, interested in learning about the world from multiple perspectives and making a difference.

Do you want to help people, communities and environments on a local or global scale? Are you interested in coursework that will challenge you to think about the world’s problems from new angles? Looking for amazing research opportunities? Ready to create new works of art and literature?

Then the College is for you. Don’t just take our word for it. See all the ways on our blog that our students are making creative use of their time in the College, like starting a Beekeeping Club, preparing for careers in health, producing creative work, or getting involved in government. 

Gain transferable skills for a variety of career paths

Employers value people who can take charge of projects. They want to hire people who can innovate and communicate effectively with their team to finish the work.

And research shows that the skills you’ll gain in the College are critical to succeess and adaptability in today’s ever-evolving job market:

  • According to a Pew study, half of all workers say interpersonal skills are crucial to their job. The same study found that nearly 45% of workers say that good communication skills are “extremely important” in their job, and 44% say this is “very important.”
  • A 2015 survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) found that skills like “ability to work in a team,” “ability to make decisions and solve problems,” and “ability to create and/or edit written reports” were sought most by employers, regardless of an employee’s major.

As a Jayhawk in the College, you’ll take classes in many different subjects and build transferable skills – writing, research, problem solving and collaboration — that will apply to a multitude of career paths. These skills can also help you learn to be your own boss.

According to a report by the Association of American Colleges & Universities, employers “overwhelmingly” support broad learning as the best preparation for long-term career success. Employers surveyed said:

  • Broad learning should be an expected part of the coursework for all students, regardless of their chosen major or field of study
  • More than three out of four employers agreed that every college student should be exposed to the liberal arts and sciences
  • 96% of employers agreed that all students should gain knowledge of our democratic institutions, which is done through liberal arts courses

The curriculum in the College teaches you to read and understand complex writings, improves your writing ability, nurtures creativity and helps with critical thinking—the skills your future employers want.

Classes in the College will also prepare for graduate school. Our graduates go on to medical school, health professions, law school, public administration, business, the arts, humanities, social and behavioral sciences, and natural sciences and math. We even offer some accelerated graduate degree programs to get you to a graduate degree faster.

There’s no end to the opportunities the College can give you to make the most of your future. 

Learn by doing

You can take classes where you create and share work through films, performances or exhibits in state-of-the-art facilities and spaces. You’ll work with faculty on creative projects that pair what you learn in the classroom with real-world scenarios, such as building a historical exhibit on KU in the tumultuous ‘60s or pairing arts and sciences for an “Artnatomy” exhibit.

Students in the College explore their interests throughout their communities and around the world. You can study abroad, conduct original research on a subject you’re passionate about, give back to communities through service, and intern with employers and organizations to apply your knowledge.

You’ll work with dedicated faculty mentors who live their subjects and seek answers to big questions. When not teaching, our faculty continue to explore their areas of expertise, like searching for signs of alien life, treating addiction, and African-American playwrights. See what we mean by meeting some of them in our video series I Am Seeking and podcast Unwinding.

Our university is one of the top research institutions in the United States. Research is the heart of the KU experience. So, one of our top priorities is to encourage research discoveries at every level. We provide funding to support the research and creative works of our faculty, research staff, and postdoctoral fellows, along with their undergraduate and graduate students, through the Research Excellence Initiative (REI), which gave a $580,000 boost to research in the College in 2018-2019 alone. Learn more about the impact of REI funding on research at KU.

You’ll join a global network of KU College Jayhawk alumni

Graduates of the College are all over the world and in all fields. And that network continues to grow, with about 15,000 students currently enrolled in the College who will become the next generation to expand the reach of Jayhawks around the world.

We have over 90,000 alumni, in all 105 Kansas counties, all 50 states and 113 foreign countries. In the words of one recent alum, “studying in the College gives you the opportunity to do anything you want to do.” Don’t believe us? Check out our Hawks to Watch, a group of alumni who are killing it in careers in business, technology, the arts, and more. They’ve worked at places like Disney, Pitchfork, MIT, the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, the Kansas Department of Commerce, the Library of Congress, and more.

Our Hawks show that people who study the liberal arts and sciences can make a big impact. Imagine all the possibilities you’ll discover about yourself when you decide to study in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences at KU.


Follow your passion. For more information, explore the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University of Kansas. Your future awaits.