A five-member student and faculty panel proposed needed improvements in the University's curriculum in a two-hour forum at the Annenberg School for Communication yesterday. The program, entitled "Tradition and Knowledge Diversified: Towards a Curriculum for the 21st Century," was the second in a series of four Future Forums, sponsored by the Student 250th Committee, addressing University concerns in the next century. The panel members focused on a number of current University curriculum issues, saying that they must be addressed with the increasing number of "diverse" students in the University community. College senior Travis Jackson said students are too often limited in their field of study, adding that they get "straight-jacketed" into certain disciplines. He added that "the future of education has to be one in which most confined disciplines are broadened." Jackson also stressed the importance of having a wide base of knowledge to achieve success in the job market. Anita Kravitz, director of the Wharton Undergraduate Division and member of the Wharton Curriculum Committee, discussed the issue of "what education should be." She said that a business curriculum must be academic rather than vocational -- encompassing communication skills and providing international breadth. Janice Madden, director of Women's Studies and professor of Regional Science, Urban Studies and Real Estate, said faculty should also be responsible to teach diversity at the University. "In an increasingly diverse University and a diverse world we continue to solve diversity problems in the classroom," she said. Madden emphasized that everybody addresses the questions of race, culture, and gender and added that it is the University's responsibility to make sure that every student thinks about these issues. Other panelists voiced the concerns of Asian-American students and problems with the general and language requirements. After the panel members presented their speeches, they fielded questions from the audience about ethnic representation in the faculty and curriculum. College sophomore Liz Cedillo, an officer of Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan said that the forum did not "cater" to her individual interests. "For the most part I thought the forum was diversified in the issues that it discussed," said the MEChA member. "However, I felt frustrated because how am I supposed to make progress when the panel did not deal with Latino concerns?"Comments powered by Disqus
Please note All comments are eligible for publication in The Daily Pennsylvanian.