The anthropology program at Laramie County Community College is on hiatus because of low demand from students, low graduation numbers and a low transfer rate. The hiatus will be going on through the 2019-20 academic catalog year.
Bryan Wilson, dean of Math and Sciences, gave insight on the plans for the future of the Anthropology program at LCCC.
“With the hiatus, we won’t accept new students in the fall,” Wilson said. “We have a plan for anthropology majors to get their anthropology classes next year. They can take on the anthropology classes, and get those classes out of the way, then they can take their other gen-eds or other classes that we will continue to offer.”
Wilson said there is no definite conclusion on if the program will stay or not, until the summer of next year.
“We put it on hold so we didn’t have any new students if it did go away,” Wilson said. “We didn’t want to get into a situation where if it does go away, we won’t have a bunch of students in the pipeline at that point in time.”
Wilson said they will accommodate students so they can reach their academic goals.
“The anthropology classes that are needed for the degree are guaranteed next year. After that, they are not guaranteed,” Wilson said. “That doesn’t mean that if we don’t need one for a student, we’ll find a way to finish their degree.”
Wilson said that the cultural anthropology class will remain.
Peggy Lucero, a half-time student at LCCC double majoring in psychology and anthropology, shared her concerns on the hiatus and why anthropology is important to society.
“I feel sad, surprised and confused as to why they might want to cut the program,” Lucero said. “By having the college focus on certain specialties, such as technology, the students they produce are not going to be well-rounded.”
Lucero said that the anthropology program plays a huge role in society and in ourselves.
“Anthropology is about culture, societies and the world we live in and where we came from,” Lucero said. “It focuses on teaching students a road map of how to respond to diverse cultures in the world, how to better mankind and themselves. Focusing on improving the future by observing and respecting past human conditions.”
Lucero shared why she thinks the program is important to students.
“It (anthropology) teaches students to have effective communication skills and critical thinking skills,” Lucero said. “It supplies students with an analytical mindset. It gives a person a plethora of tools to thrive in the real world.”
Lucero said anthropology encompasses multiple jobs and careers.
“It (anthropology) includes political science, journalism, economics, social science, linguistics, education, business, government, media and communications,” Lucero said.
Lucero also added that according to the Bureau of Labor statistics, the demand for anthropologists are expected to rise 4 percent from 2016 to 2026.
Lucero said her career aspiration is to work with children who have been mentally, physically and sexually abused.