Washington, Feb 19: US President Barack Obama recently sent a handwritten letter to an art history professor at the University of Texas, apologizing for his comments on people holding a degree in art history.
The President had said in January 2014 that “people can make a lot more potentially with skilled manufacturing or the trades than they might with an art history,” the Huffington Post reported.
Obama’s remark was highly criticised by the media and citizens, including art historian Ann Collins Johns, who took to the White House website and stated that as art historians, they challenge their students to think, read, and write critically.
Responding to Johns’ defensive comments, Obama wrote in the letter that he wanted to apologize for his off-the-cuff remarks and he was simply making a point about the jobs market, not the value of art history.
Obama also revealed in the letter that art history was one of his favorite subjects in high school, and it has helped him take in a great deal of joy in his life that he might otherwise have missed.
The President added that through his comments he was just trying to encourage young people who may not be predisposed to a four year college experience to be open to technical training that can lead them to an honorable career.
Johns told the publication that she appreciated the President’s apology, but felt it was important for him to know that art history is no longer just the purview of ‘the girls with pearls’. (ANI)