Competencies Cultivated at Soka

Through a rigorous four-year education at Soka University of America, our graduates leave with a well-rounded foundation of knowledge, critical skills, and core values that are highly marketable in today’s complex and diverse job market. Here are some of the key skills our liberal arts graduates acquire:

  • Critical Thinking and Problem Solving: Our curriculum encourages students to think critically, question assumptions, and solve complex problems. This provides our graduates with the ability to confront challenges with an open and analytical mind.
  • Communication Skills: Liberal arts students develop excellent written and verbal communication skills. They learn to articulate their thoughts clearly, persuasively, and succinctly, in various contexts.
  • Global Citizenship: Aligned with our mission to foster global citizens, our students not only understand the interdependence of societies and cultures, they have spent four years living, working and developing relationships with people from all over the world. This equips them to operate effectively in diverse, multicultural environments.
  • Emotional Intelligence and Empathy: Through exploring a wide range of human experiences and perspectives, our students develop empathy and emotional intelligence, key to navigating interpersonal relationships in any professional setting.
  • Adaptability and Flexibility: The broad and varied liberal arts curriculum fosters adaptability and flexibility, enabling our graduates to thrive in various roles and industries.
  • Creative Thinking: Our free and open dialogue encourages innovative and creative thinking, producing graduates who can bring fresh ideas and unique perspectives to their professions.
  • Ethical Leadership: Guided by Buddhist principles, our students learn the importance of ethical decision-making, human rights, and peace. This creates compassionate leaders who contribute positively to their workplaces and communities.

Answering Frequently Asked Questions During Job Interviews

While job interviews may vary greatly based on the position or industry, here are some common questions you might face and ways you can frame your answers to highlight the skills and values you’ve gained through your liberal arts education at Soka University.

Answer: “My liberal arts education has given me robust critical thinking and problem-solving skills. I am trained to consider multiple perspectives and possible solutions before making decisions. I believe this approach would be beneficial in addressing complex problems in any professional context.”

Answer: “At Soka University, I developed a deep understanding of the interdependence of individuals and societies, which has nurtured my ability to work effectively in diverse teams. I believe in the importance of empathy and open dialogue in a team setting, and I’m committed to bringing these values to my role.”

Answer: “Studying liberal arts has prepared me to be flexible and adaptable. For instance, [provide a specific example]. This experience has taught me the importance of being open-minded and quick to adjust to new situations.”

Answer: “My education at Soka University has been comprehensive and varied, providing me with a wide range of skills [mention specific skills related to the job]. Furthermore, the university’s commitment to wisdom, courage, and compassion has shaped me as an individual ready to serve others and contribute to the greater good.”

Answer: “In my liberal arts education, I have learned to approach problems from a variety of angles and to appreciate the importance of diversity and global perspectives. This helps me bring innovative solutions and fresh ideas to the business environment. My ability to think critically, communicate effectively, and adapt to changes positions me to succeed in any professional setting.”

Answer: “Absolutely. During my time at Soka University, I was continually challenged to critically analyze complex issues [give a specific example]. These experiences have honed my ability to think deeply about problems and devise innovative solutions.”

Answer: “While vocational degrees provide specialized skills, a liberal arts degree equips students with a versatile skill set that is highly adaptable across industries. It cultivates critical thinking, problem-solving, communication, and leadership skills that are essential in any professional environment. Moreover, it fosters a global perspective, empathy, and ethical awareness that are increasingly important in our interconnected world.”

Answer: “While I respect the depth of knowledge that specialized degrees offer, my liberal arts education has given me a broad base of skills that are transferable across industries, including business. This versatility enables me to quickly grasp new concepts and adapt to different professional environments. Additionally, I am a lifelong learner and am committed to continually expanding my knowledge and skills.”

Answer: “A key part of my liberal arts education was learning about diverse cultures, societies, and perspectives. This has cultivated my understanding of the value of diversity in a team and how different viewpoints can drive innovative solutions. It has also taught me the importance of empathy and open dialogue in fostering productive team dynamics.”