Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

The value of human ecology

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Re: The wreck of home ec, Feb. 1.

Although once tied to the family and the home, each of the specialties in the University of Manitoba's faculty of human ecology -- family dynamics, textile properties and nutritional health -- has grown out of the domestic sphere.

These programs aren't obsolete, they're changing direction. From a holistic standpoint, it makes sense to keep these programs as one. But if they are suffering due to a lack of funding, we need to recognize what redistribution means.

We human ecologists and home economists are no longer bound to the domestic sphere. Shifting each stream into another faculty shows the value and benefit of each segment of the degree. Why would a program be added to a faculty if it was considered useless?

Rather than seeing this as an affront to women by shutting down a female-dominated faculty or as discounting our degree, let's celebrate the success of our faculty. The programs, the professions and the graduates aren't being undermined -- they're being commended.

THEA PEDERSEN

Winnipeg

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition February 4, 2014 A6

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