Flinn Scholars

What to do with an interdisciplinary degree

December 30, 2007

By Flinn Foundation

A couple of weeks ago, we were talking with some undergrads who were grumbling about being forced to think about the future and pick majors and file for graduation… as freshmen. Ah, the plight of over-educated 18 year-olds.

It got us thinking of the herculean battle Pete Ranger (’91) waged against the ASU registrar’s office back in the day. It went something like this: The registrar said, “Tell us your major.” Peter said, “I would prefer not to,” and left for China. The registrar said, “Seriously, tell us your major.” Peter said, “I would prefer not to,” and disappeared to Europe. The registrar said, “Tell us your major or we’re booting you out of school.” Peter said, “I would prefer not to, but okay,” and promptly invented a program of study all his very own.

So what happens after you get a Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies degree? Go to work for the most “interdisciplinary” company you can find, natch: Chemed Corp., whose subsidiaries include Roto-Rooter and… VITAS Innovative Hospice Care.

[5-second break while you chew on that one.]

Pete (who does have an MBA to go along with that BIS) is the vice president for VITAS, overseeing strategic initiatives and new projects for the nation’s largest provider of hospice care. He’s based in Miami, where he’s also active in the United Way of Miami-Dade