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The purpose of a liberal arts education is to encourage you to think critically and to ask good questions. Within that framework the arts play an important role especially in terms of promoting creativity. HASS-housed programs like EMAC Electronic Media Arts and Communication and GSAS Games and Simulation Arts and Sciences feature some of the most visionary thinking on campus and the Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center EMPAC is one of the most technologically advanced performance spaces in the world. HASS has also recently brought on board the distinguished poet Shira Dentz to helm its creative writing program. Also on the faculty is Nicholas DeMaison the Institutes conductor who is intent on giving students the kind of rigorous musical ensemble experience that is commensurate with a Rensselaer education and an all-Steinway school. The arts are alive and flourishing at Rensselaer. school of hass 26