My name is Tim Kaiser and I currently work at Warner Bros. Television as the co-executive producer of the CBS comedy series, 2 Broke Girls. Over the course of my career I have produced more than 600 episodes of primetime sitcoms and have received Emmy Awards for Seinfeld and Will & Grace, as well as a Golden Globe, People’s Choice Award, and Director’s Guild Award for various shows. As a 1985 graduate of Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania, with a BA in telecommunications I am convinced that my liberal arts education has profoundly influenced my career.
The most basic elements of the entertainment business, more specifically network television, are creativity and change. I am not referring to just the original creative elements of concept, story, or character development, but to the very essence of television production. Change drives the production process, and creatively managing that change is the work that ensures “the show must go on.”
I have interviewed and hired hundreds of new college
graduates, and have concluded that those who are the best thinkers and
problem solvers are the most well-rounded. Those who are best able to
deal with the wide variety of demands of the entertainment industry
undoubtedly have a background in liberal arts.
My liberal arts foundation has provided me with a broad knowledge of the world of culture, science, and society, as well as in-depth study in telecommunications and speech. The experiences in my specific major would have been far less effective without the crucial support of the liberal arts treasures of critical thinking, problem solving, spiritual development, ethics, creativity, and integrity. These are some of the characteristics that have enabled me to thrive in my world of creativity and change.
I have interviewed and hired hundreds of new college graduates, and have concluded that those who are the best thinkers and problem solvers are the most well-rounded. Those who are best able to deal with the wide variety of demands of the entertainment industry undoubtedly have a background in liberal arts. They emerge with an ability to think for themselves, courage to embrace change, and the innovative leadership needed to navigate challenges.
As I reflect, I am reminded that inspiration is the core of what is fostered in a liberal education. It is this intangible edge that has influenced me and is the spark that I look for in the students who are emerging in the professional world. I believe that the impact that these liberal arts graduates have on the world will, in turn, foster the inspiration for the future of higher education.