Do “The Arts” fit with Lehigh University’s “Grand Challenges”?

If you’re a reader of this blog, you have your own definition of “the arts.” ArtsLehigh’s definition of “the arts” includes all aspects of the formal and informal visual, performing, literary and design arts. In the latest version of Lehigh University’s Strategic Plan, the Grand Challenges are defined: (1) Globalization (2) Energy, Environment, and Infrastructure and (3)Health.
As stated in the Strategic Plan, “These challenges are important to society, and they represent areas where Lehigh has core strengths and where concerted effort will allow Lehigh to have a significant impact.”

Lehigh’s greatest strengths are not only in the expertise of our faculty and excellence of our facilities, but in the founding principles of the institution:

Lehigh trustees followed several principles in setting up the university. One was that of combining scientific and classical education; they considered both to be practical. The principle carried forward an ideal of the great 17th-century Moravian educator John Amos Comenius. A motto taken from the works of Francis Bacon was used to summarize this principle, namely, “Homo Minister et Interpres Naturaeman,” which translates loosely to “Man, the servant and interpreter of nature.”

Through the study of art, we come to understand our world. Through the experience of art, we come to understand other truths, other perspectives, other solutions. I’ll cut to the chase. Yes, the arts are inextricably woven to Lehigh University’s Grand Challenges.