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wharton vs liberal arts? oh the age-old debate

romantic_cynicromantic_cynic Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
edited May 2008 in Business Major
i was accepted to wharton, and in the time since, i've had a lot of time to think about my future. in my last semester of high school, i couldn't help but think "is this the most math i'll ever learn? the most about government, history, and literature?" i won't miss science (lol) but- i know my education wont be the same anymore in business school. i read the facebook threads of all these kids who already manage portfolios while i know absolutely nothing about business (no extracurriculars, one accounting class that taught me accounting was boring). i cant help but feel out of place

i feel like these are questions i should have considered before i applied, and i did consider them. in my admissions essay, i wrote how much i like working with people and take an interest in the way businesses and economies affect the world. i wanted to start off big when i went into the workforce. i'm starting to feel like those weren't such good reasons to commit to 4 years of business school.

worst of all, i know there are hundreds of people who would eagerly take my spot and that just makes me feel like a whiner. and i AM driven and hardworking, but i'm starting to doubt my decision. i don't know if im just nervous to learn new subjects or what.

the truth is i'm looking for encouragement to study business. i'm looking for encouragement that will help shake these doubts. maybe that's a good sign.

and yes, i wanted to specifically mention wharton because in the general threads i read about "business vs liberal arts," the fact that a business education was from <i>wharton</i> (in a deified, reverent tone of voice) was some kind of special factor. oy vay. are things going to be alright for me? lol
Post edited by romantic_cynic on

Replies to: wharton vs liberal arts? oh the age-old debate

  • GilGil Registered User Posts: 293 Junior Member
    You really don't seem like you'll fit well in Wharton. But Wharton students DO get to achieve a liberal arts education too... only that most of them are too pre-professional and career-oriented to do so. Still, I don't think a person like you who enjoys literature and math and history will enjoy those business classes. Just my two cents. Sorry but I can't really help you choose.
  • naurunauru Registered User Posts: 1,158 Senior Member
    You sound like you'd fit in much better in courses like quantitative macroeconomics, microeconometrics, game theory, experimental economics, economic systems, history of economic thought, heterodox economic thought, economic methodology and logic, differential equations, linear algebra, non-parametric statistics, growth theory, public choice theory, international trade theory, monetary economics.... most of these courses would be calculus-based from day 1 by the way, if you go to a proper econ department. You seem to have a pro-intellectual (rather than anti-intellectual) attitude. Many business students simply "don't care" if they don't see it affecting their competitiveness for jobs, or their bottom line in the future. You, on the other hand, still have some idealism left in you regarding what education is about, which is great.

    You might want to look into a BSc in Economics & Math (or possibly a BA; just make sure you look at the quality of the degree content before making a decision).
  • passerbypasserby Registered User Posts: 617 Member
    i like working with people and take an interest in the way businesses and economies affect the world

    I guess you could go to Wharton and do a concentration in Business & Public Policy and a minor/double major in another area of interest. You aren't limited to Wharton; you also have access to all the majors and minors that Penn has to offer.
  • zoolanderzoolander Registered User Posts: 709 Member
    it is called the "double major"
  • GilGil Registered User Posts: 293 Junior Member
    But the problem with double majoring is that you'll have to take all those business courses that you won't enjoy. Those courses could be used in other departments like history, science, philosophy, etc. instead.
  • zoolanderzoolander Registered User Posts: 709 Member
    i dont know how it works in wharton but in stern i have the option of doing a business concentration in statistics(which is like a more focused math major) and economics so it can be liberal arts focused

    i am certain wharton has the same thing. 2 accounting classes won't kill you and i think if business is your thing, you have to take eventually anyway
  • romantic_cynicromantic_cynic Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
    thanks for the advice. ive always thought about minoring/double-majors et cetera but was somewhat intimidated. i guess if im truly interested i'll be up to the challenge =)
  • Life StrategistLife Strategist Registered User Posts: 54 Junior Member
    How did you get accepted to Wharton in the first place if you don't have any track record indicating your strong passion in business? I doubt you are telling the truth since Wharton school is extremely hard to get into (more prepared and qualified business-track high schoolers than spaces available)!
  • romantic_cynicromantic_cynic Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
    i assure you im telling the truth! i cant tell you what exactly got me in (i wouldnt need to be going to college considering all the money i could make from reading the minds of college admissions officers) but i had a strong all-around resume.

    wharton does have a statistics concentration, but economics is through CAS.

    ive looked more indepth into the different options at penn in terms of a broad education. im just going to go after it with an open mind and be open to everything. thanks everyone
  • Milton RoarkMilton Roark Registered User Posts: 397 Member
    It's alright if you don't find most business classes to be the most entertaining aspect of your education. Real business is only remotely like those classes would make it out to be. Having some degree of idealism is a good thing for business.
This discussion has been closed.