Save UWE's Philosophy programme
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The University of the West of England (UWE) has announced that the Philosophy Programme will be closing. I have just completed my final year studying Philosophy at UWE, and my coursemates and I are devastated to hear this news. Studying Philosophy at UWE has contributed to some of the best years of my life, allowing me to delve into my curiosities about the world and discuss them with my coursemates and lecturers who share my interest in abstract ideas and critical thinking. Although Philosophy courses can be undertaken at other institutions, my coursemates and I firmly believe that the particular programme at UWE is something to be valued by the university and prospective students.
Here are some of the reasons why UWE's Philosophy programme should be saved:
- Philosophy is an important subject - it encourages its students to be curious, critical, and openminded about the world and allows for the development of numerous skills that are highly valued by various employers - such skills include critical thinking, excellent written and verbal communication skills, forming and communicating complex arguments, analysis and research skills, comprehending difficult texts and abstract notions, leadership, effective collaboration and teamwork, self-motivation, self-confidence, resilience, impeccable organisation and time management skills
- A degree in Philosophy creates numerous potential career paths rather than being limited to one type of career - graduates can move onto roles in teaching, academic research, law, finance, healthcare, the creative industries, the civil service, social work, non-profit organisations, and so on
- The Guardian's 'University Guide 2020: league table for philosophy' ranked UWE 6th out of 44 institutions - this demonstrates that the philosophy department at UWE does incredible work and is something that the university should be incredibly proud of
- The Philosophy lecturers, Alison, Charlotte, Dagmar, Emiliano, Francesco, Iain, Katrina, Miguel, and Sean, are an incredible team of individuals who have used their own areas of expertise and interest in philosophy to shape the course into something they are all passionate to share with their students - the teaching is always full of enthusiasm and excitement, which perhaps is not the case at all other universities
- The Philosophy lecturers needed barely any time to establish themselves as supportive friends rather than exclusively academic lecturers - many of them have offered support to students who have faced non-academic struggles as well as hardships relating to the course
- Philosophy at UWE is not limited to discussions in classrooms on campus - the Thought in Action: Film and Philosophy module partakes in the Thought in Action film events at the Bristol Watershed, whereby members of the public are encouraged to join students in philosophical discussions about cinema - the Developing Self and Society module requires students to engage in 30 hours of work experience in order to encourage students to think about how philosophical skills can be applied to the world of work
- UWE's Philosophy programme offers modules that cannot be found at other universities - this includes more contemporary and applied modules such as Ethics of Technology as well as modules such as Hellenistic and Neo-Platonist Philosophies - I count myself lucky to have studied at UWE due to the range of modules that it provides
By signing this petition, you are helping my coursemates and me, as well as the alumni of UWE Philosophy, to attempt to reverse this change and assert that Philosophy is a valuable subject to offer at UWE, and that the existing Philosophy programme is something to be exceptionally proud of.
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