This fall, students have the ability to take three new minors: photography, linguistics and professional selling, and they will also have the ability to major in a maximum of three subjects.
Previously, two majors were the maximum.
The photography minor, which will provide both traditional photographic processes and digital manipulation from photographic resources, will be available to students of all majors, except for students already in the art department.
The exclusion of art students from earning a minor in photography is, according to Nancy Freudenthal, executive assistant to the provost, necessary because several of the requirements for the photography minor are also requirements for art majors.
However, many art students are upset that they will not be able to minor in photography and therefore be unable to receive the same institutional recognition that students in other departments would for taking the same classes.
“If I were interested in photography, I would definitely want the recognition of my work in that field,” Jenna Garrison, freshman graphic design major, said.
Information compiled by the art department and included in its proposal to the Steering Committee shows that at other colleges and universities in New Jersey that offer programs in photography, aside from art majors, students who major in biology, business, communications, computer science, education, English (especially journalism) and political science are most likely to pursue a minor in photography.
The linguistics minor, housed in the modern languages department and available to all students of the College, embraces an interdisciplinary approach.
It integrates classes from various departments to grant students institutional recognition for scholarship in linguistics.
The professional selling minor is also interdisciplinary, as it combines courses in marketing, communication studies and psychology to provide students with skills to sell products and services to businesses.
The minor is available to students in all majors throughout the College.
The linguistics and professional selling minors thus follow Freudenthal’s assertion that, “Philosophically, we are embracing the term interdisciplinary. We have been encouraging our students to look across the disciplines, and minors are a good way to do this.”
Though linguistics and professional selling are open to students of all majors, the foreign language requirement for linguistics may prevent students of majors that do not require the foreign language liberal learning requirement, such as elementary education, from pursuing the linguistics minor.
The implementation of a new rule allowing students to undertake three majors, rather than two, has been met with both student criticism and appreciation.
The criticism lies in the fact that with all majors requiring at least 12 major courses in addition to liberal learning requirements, satisfying requirements for three majors in four years can seem to be an unrealistic goal.
Keith Chomsky, sophomore chemistry major, wondered, “How do you even do that?”
Rosalie Crespo, freshman English secondary education major, thinks the change can be beneficial to those who want to take advantage of it.
“It’s good that they offered (the opportunity to take three majors) but I don’t understand how or why anyone would do that,” she said.
Still, some students have a more optimistic view of the College’s ability to accommodate fitting a student’s three majors into a four-year time plan. “I think the school has a good way of organizing schedules,” Michelle Spiegel, freshman Spanish elementary education major, said. “If they have everything planned out it would work. But it really depends on what the majors are.”