Earlier in 2018, leaders at UW-Stevens Point proposed eliminating more than a dozen humanities programs at the school. That plan was scaled back in the fall to just six programs. Advocates of the cuts say they’re needed both to address a budget crunch but also to better reflect the needs of central Wisconsin — specifically in areas such as career training.
Critics point to humanities programs at the school that give direct career experience, like the publisher Cornerstone Press, a working publishing house managed by UW-Stevens Point students. Ross Tangedal, an English professor and director of Cornerstone Press, says Cornerstone Press is evidence that the humanities are vital for career readiness.
"There’s an immense practicality to the humanities. It’s been proven again and again by Forbes, Fortune 500 companies — how they’re looking for certain skill sets. But not just skill sets, but how people navigate those skill sets in a very complex work environment," he says.