Update on Austrian Masters Program at Loyola

I posted versions of the following response to the news report at The Maroon and Stephan Kinsellas blog post at mises.org.

Thank you for the kind write up.

I will say that I remain very optimistic about the expansion of our programs here at Loyola – both undergraduate and graduate. As far as this initial denial is concerned, it is not entirely surprising nor completely discouraging.

 

Trust me when I say that this process is extremely complicated and resource intensive. As such, it has been a learning experience for all of those involved. What we have learned thus far is that for the proposal that we had put together to have been approved last Spring, it would have required many dispersed stars to align so to speak – and very quickly at that. These stars included but were not necessarily limited to, significant fund raising, endowment accrual, faculty searches and hires, curriculum designs and implementations, as well as processes involving University and college accreditation.

 

As the proposal was submitted we admittedly did not have complete or certain answers to all of these questions. In fact, by undergoing the procedures we have experienced, we have only now learned the many tasks and necessary components to moving towards our goal. In turn, I think that this initial denial may become a blessing in disguise.

 

The development of a masters program in Austrian economics remains a formal component of our college of business’s strategic plan. What we hope to do in the upcoming years is close a significant portion of the uncertainty window that was tied to this earlier proposal. In other words, we are currently investigating grant and fund raising opportunities in order to expand our faculty base and undergraduate student programs.

 

With additional funded faculty added to our staff we hope to offer our undergraduate students more diverse electives, interactive student research opportunities and extra-curricular learning processes such as seminars, conferences and reading groups. If we succeed in these short term goals of departmental expansion, then we will have a more informed vision as to how viable designing, staffing, funding and implementing a masters program will be in the future. Ideally so to would a committee responsible for approving such a proposal also have that clearer vision.

 

I periodically receive follow up emails from our online survey designed to garner the demand side interest for such a masters program. I ask that those interested in staying up to date on our program and program expansions in the future fill out the survey here:

http://www.business.loyno.edu/master-economics

 

I plan to draft a sort of informational memo to all survey respondents sometime within the next week or so to keep them abreast of the above information as well as to gain a vision of potential fund raising sources to support our department in these crucial processes moving forward.

 

To make a long story short we are moving forward and in many ways we are moving forward more tangibly and quickly than we would have been able to had our initial proposal been approved as it had been drafted.

 

Again, I thank you for the kind write up and your general support of our efforts to spread the ideas of Austrian economics, free markets, peace and liberty.

 

Sincerely,

Dan D’Amico

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