Celebrating its 200th year of education, Lycoming College emphasizes a broad liberal arts experience designed to help graduates in real-world situations in the workforce.
Dr. James E. Douthat, Lycoming's 13th president and the third-most tenured president in Lycoming's history, said the institution's courses are grounded in writing, language and hands-on science labs.
Douthat said that Lycoming is unique because it is only one of a few schools in the state that requires students to major in the discipline in which they will teach.
"By doing it that way, we think they're going to be a better teacher," he said.
Students also have the opportunity to take non-teaching jobs because of their majors, Douthat added.
Lycoming's business administration major, which encompasses finance, health care administration, international and cross-culture business, management, marketing and sustainable business management, is the college's most populated.
Douthat said the college's liberal arts focus of writing, research and analysis certainly comes into play in the major.
"What can the liberal arts bring to the business major? What is it that the business owner is looking for?," Douthat asked, noting Lycoming College has that answer.
Doctor Neil Boyd, chair of Lycoming's business administration department and associate professor of management, agrees with Douthat.
"There are few business departments in private liberal arts schools," Boyd said. "There are plenty of economics programs, but not business administration."
Boyd also values the relationship between liberal arts and real world business applications.
"That's our philosophy as a whole. We really look at the system in an egalitarian way in that we all connect to each other," he said. "Business is not a standalone. In class, we are directly adding to students skills."
Boyd, who has been at Lycoming for six years, credits his fellow faculty and innovative curriculum for the success of the college's business program.
"We definitely look at ourselves as a high-quality program grounded in the liberal arts," he said. "It's clearly different than other business programs."
Douthat said it's the faculty that helps students succeed.
"The faculty members know your name," he said, adding the college has a 14-1 student to teacher ratio.
"We expect every student to graduate because they have the ability to do good," he said.
Douthat also said Lycoming has been successful because of its relationship with the community.
"It (the college) is dependent on the community just as the community is dependent on the college," he said
Douthat said Lycoming is looking forward to future opportunities as a community partner.
"You just don't look back, you look into the future," he said.
He also noted the economic value the college brings through salaries and spin-off business.
"You multiply that by 200 years, I think that makes an impact," said Douthat.