I was appalled by your readers' responses {"Majors Aren't Minor," Free for All, Sept. 8} to William Raspberry's article "College Majors Don't Matter" {op-ed, Aug. 31}. The purpose of a college education is to increase students' knowledge in areas in which they have the greatest intellectual capacity and to continue the development of their skills of reading comprehension, written expression and logical thinking. Critical thinking and scholarship should be the hallmark of every subject area and every profession regardless of the university or the department of study.

For scientists and engineers or any other group to claim a unique position for their fields, as John C. Feltz did, is shameful. The successful, intellectually wealthy and complete person needs to acquire both a liberal education and a profession to fully enjoy the life experience. Most important, students should major in that subject area that they enjoy and in which they have the greatest facility, for that is where they will find the greatest success. The person who is happy in his or her vocation is far wealthier than the "rich man."

-- Sam A. Margolis

What a cynical view Roger D. Shull holds. Apparently he believes teachers are not of the lot "who would like to earn a decent living and make a contribution to their society." He stated, "Starting salaries for bachelor's degree graduates in physical sciences and engineering are 30 percent to 50 percent higher than for degrees in liberal arts, education, social sciences and the humanities."

While that may be true, it may also be the downfall of our society. Without teachers, who will teach the future scientists and engineers?

-- Diane L. Yamini