Value of Essential Studies

Through ES you'll focus on learning related to effective communication, intercultural knowledge and skills, critical inquiry and analysis, and working with information. Not only will this form a primary component of your UND education, the work you do in ES will enhance your major – whatever it is.

Essential Studies and Your Career:

Employers know that what you do to master the learning goals of the ES Program can make a big difference in your success after graduation.


of employers agree that for career success, a student's, "demonstrated capacity to think critically, communicate clearly, and solve complex problems is more important than his or her undergraduate major."


of employers agree that "all college students should gain intercultural skills and an understanding of societies and countries outside the United States."

10 Reasons Why ES is Critical for Future Success

1. Employers demand it

Liberal Arts in the Data Age
July-August 2017, Harvard Business Review

2.  Philosophical approach

Why Philosophy is So Important in Science Education
November 2017, Quartz

3. Intellectual and spiritual growth

To Be Is to Learn
July 2017, Pittsburgh Post Gazette

4. Listen critically

Art Works Podcast
Interview with Lin-Manuel Miranda (creator of the musical Hamilton)

5. Consider differering viewpoints

Need Another Use for a Liberal Arts Education? How about Learning to Be a Citizen?
December 2017, Big Think

7. Develop empathy

Democracy Needs Liberal Arts Education
February 2018, East Bay Times

8. Cultural competency

Technical or Cultural Courses? Students Need Both
March 2018, The Chronicle of Higher Education

9. Job satisfaction

Liberal Arts Degree Delivers Liberal Earnings and Job Satisfaction
March 2018, The Seattle Times

10. Broad set of skills

How Colleges Can Help STEM Students Think More Broadly
May 2018, The Chronicle of Higher Education