Career Paths

What I Do: Historians Talk about Their Work, with Carol Geary Schneider

AHA Staff, December 2013

Carol Geary SchneiderCarol Geary Schneider talks to What I Do about her role as president of the Association of American Colleges and Universities and how she uses her background in history to further the AAC&U’s mission: advancing and strengthening undergraduate liberal education.

“When history is done well, you’re always thinking about the ‘so what?’ What are the consequences of a set of interactions and developments both short-­term and long-­term? This is what [the AAC&U] is doing now. We have to advance certain kinds of change with an eye toward the larger societal impact.”

Schneider’s conscious responsibility to history enables her not only to explain the historical significance of a liberal education, but also to analyze and organize emerging themes in order to move liberal education forward. One such theme is the disconnect between what we want students to learn and the practices that aren’t working well educationally to get them there. Schneider not only gives advice to graduate students and professors but also elaborates on the role of the AAC&U as a reform-­minded organization.

For more from Carol Geary Schneider, visit the What I Do series page.