Liberal Arts

Liberal Arts

Female student listening in class

SMC is a career-focused liberal arts college, which means you’ll take classes in a variety of subjects throughout your degree program. This broad education allows you to explore your academic interests before choosing a major. Internship opportunities during your two or four years at SMC, plus a focus on career development inside and outside the classroom, provide you with the skills necessary to excel in any career.

Like many private liberal arts colleges in the United States, SMC has a smaller student body and a smaller teacher-to-student ratio than universities (which offer graduate degrees and are typically much larger schools).

How a liberal arts college benefits you:

  • Professors at liberal arts colleges focus on teaching. Professors at universities often have publishing requirements that take up their time and focus. This means they have less time to devote to creating excellent classes.
  • Courses are taught by professors, not students. At large universities, graduate students often serve as instructors in undergraduate, lower-level courses. This means you may not get the benefit of a professor’s knowledge and experience when you need it the most.
  • Smaller class sizes mean professors can devote more time and attention to each student. Many universities offer lower-level courses to hundreds of students at a time in large lecture halls. For students who struggle academically, small classes mean more support.
  • Liberal arts colleges emphasize study in a wide area of subjects (history, math, philosophy, English…) rather than a narrow area of focus. This wide area of study teaches you important skills that transfer to any career field and improve your overall quality of life. Some of these skills include: critical thinking, problem-solving, taking information from a variety of sources and using it to create new information (synthesis), and communication.

How SMC benefits you:

SMC is unique among liberal arts colleges because we focus on providing you with a well-rounded education plus the career skills employers want. Why is that a benefit? Because you won’t have just one career, you’ll have many. No college major can prepare you today for all of the jobs you’ll have in the future. But the professional skills employers want will be valuable throughout your careers.

At SMC you’ll receive all the benefits of a liberal arts college listed above, as well as:

  • A personal advisor who will provide academic counseling throughout your education journey at SMC. See Pioneer Advising Center (PAC).
  • Faculty mentors who will guide you once you’ve chosen your major.
  • Our emphasis on providing an extraordinary liberal arts experience means you’ll spend your first two years fully immersed in a variety of classes, with plenty of time to discover what interests you.
  • An opportunity to achieve two degrees in four years. Our unique bachelor’s degree that allows you to choose two concentrations.
  • You’ll perform group projects that teach understanding and openness to the ideas of others.
  • By doing in-class presentations, you’ll sharpen communication skills.
  • Your leadership abilities will be strengthened through participation in student organizations.
  • Athletics foster a sense of loyalty and commitment.
  • Creativity and imagination are encouraged by involvement in the arts and educational programs.
  • Community outreach projects foster civic and social responsibility.
  • You’ll graduate prepared to use the skills you attain here to build careers, lead others and strengthen our society.