Student Profiles

Linda MacRae

Enrollment in the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies program at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington will allow me to achieve a longstanding personal goal of attaining a Masters degree and in the process to explore a variety of social and cultural concerns, something I do naturally.

As a student committed to the life-long development of my intellect, I understand the value of a liberal studies education. This understanding came about when I earned my B.A. in anthropology from UNCW where I was introduced to a variety of challenging and illuminating concepts. I began to see the power of ideas and their capacity to broaden minds or narrow them. This awakening was most significant for me.

Since I was born in Wilmington, North Carolina in 1947 during Jim Crowism, I knew segregation. I knew fear of the KKK. I knew "my place." The ideas of white supremacy and black inferiority were embedded in my mind very early. White supremacy was overwhelming and black inferiority was paralyzing. These two ideas were entrenched in the minds of those around me and appeared to be inescapable. Through liberal studies, I began to understand how the notion of white supremacy was developed and perpetuated; how blacks were socialized into their "inferiority"; and how deeply these ideas ran in the social fabric of our society. My undergraduate major in anthropology and related course work in sociology, history, psychology, and the arts began to liberate me from the harmful effects of these ideas. I haven't been entirely liberated, but I have begun my journey.

Clearly, my background in liberal studies has been instrumental in my personal growth and development. Relief from the ego-destroying idea of black inferiority has resulted in liberation for me and a zeal to help lead others toward their own liberation. Continuation of my quest for intellectual growth via the MALS program is a natural pursuit for me. It can make me a more thoughtful person, challenge my innate sense of intellectual curiosity, and make me a more effective leader in the workplace and the local community.

Last Update: October 17, 2003


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