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New USD ethics, economics center to inspire debate, discovery

Friday, February 17, 2017

Nothing is more important for a college education than engaging with a diversity of ideas. When students confront concepts and beliefs that differ from their own, they’re able to critically analyze their own thought processes and the wider world around them. The resulting process of discovery enables students — and scholars — to improve themselves and contribute to their communities throughout their lives. Sadly, a diversity of ideas is too often lacking at today’s universities, both in California and across the nation. Students are too often thrown into an environment of conformity rather than vigorous debate. Far from promoting discussion among competing viewpoints, colleges and universities too often frown upon — or even penalize — students and scholars who seek to challenge the status quo. But this undermines students’ ability to pursue knowledge and find fulfillment in their own lives, as well as the very purpose of a college education. Overcoming this crisis is one of the great challenges of our day. That is why, in conjunction with a group of seven donors, we are pleased to support the University of San Diego as it announces the launch of its Center for Ethics, Economics, and Public Policy.  This new center will focus on an important area of study: How political and economic institutions help promote freedom and social justice — or put more simply, how a free society can improve people’s lives. As three of the center’s primary supporters — including one who is a USD alumnus — we’re excited by the scholars’ vision for their center to inspire debate and discovery both inside and outside the classroom. This exchange of ideas will benefit students, San Diego, and society itself in the years to come. The school is committed to fostering a vibrant debate of ideas with a particular focus on a free and open economy. This is something the three of us deeply believe in. We have each discovered opportunities to achieve success in business by improving others’ lives through our various entrepreneurial endeavors. America’s free society made our own stories possible; it is our hope that such a society will flourish even more in the years ahead so that more and more people can pursue and achieve well-being in their own lives.  This deeply matters. History demonstrates that the more free and open a society — in terms of both economic and civil liberties — the happier and more fulfilled its citizens are. The past 200 years in particular show that increased freedom directly leads to increased opportunity, prosperity, and well-being, especially at the bottom of the socio-economic ladder. In fact, the global trend toward free economies and free societies has liberated over a billion people from extreme poverty over the last 25 years alone. And the march of freedom has brought with it corresponding advances in social justice.   Alas, this perspective is often the most foreign to college campuses. It runs counter to the dominant mindset of control and statism in modern academia. That’s why it’s so critical that students and scholars have the chance to encounter a new way of thinking. They can ultimately reach whatever conclusion they want — but if they only hear one perspective, then they haven’t reached any conclusion at all. Education, after all, is supposed to encourage self-reflection and critical thought. The University of San Diego should be applauded for seeking to increase the diversity of ideas available on its campus. We are honored to partner with the school in this project. It is our hope that USD — to say nothing of other schools — will do even more during the years ahead. The future of higher education — and perhaps of America itself — depends on it.

Alumni Spotlight: Danny Wiborg

Monday, February 13, 2017

By Professor Molly McClain After graduating in 2008, history majors Danny Wiborg and Ryan Lee renovated an old school bus and headed to Mexico. The b…

Alumni Spotlight: Ryan Lee

Monday, February 13, 2017

By Professor Molly McClain After graduating in 2008, history majors Ryan Lee and Danny Wiborg renovated an old school bus and headed to Mexico. The b…

USD Author on NPR's Fresh Air

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Brian Alexander will be reading here on campus on Monday, February 27, 2017.  Listen to his interview on NPR's Fresh Air! http://www.npr.org/2017…

Study Abroad in London

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Sign up for THRS 353: Early Christianity by Dr. Florence Gillman, in London, England this summer!  Application deadline is February 22. See…

Theatre Open Auditions Call

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Auditions this Thursday, Friday and Saturday, February 2-4, 2017. FINDING THE SUN (a Student Lab Production) by Edward Albee, direct…

Amalia sitting on rocks

Alumni Spotlight: Amalia Harrington

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

What year did you graduate and with what Major/Minor? I graduated in 2010 with a BA in Marine Science What is your hometown? Ann Arbor, MI Where a…

Katie participating in marine fieldwork

Alumni Spotlight: Katie Laybourn

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

What year did you graduate and with what Major/Minor? I graduated in 2015 with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and a minor in Marine Science.  …

Alumni Spotlight: Taylor Simpkins

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

What year did you graduate and with what Major/Minor? Graduated in 2013 and my major was Marine Science What is your hometown? Costa Mesa, CA Wher…

Jennifer Prairie with students at SACNAS Conference

Faculty Spotlight: Jennifer Prairie

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Since her first year at USD (when she was just building and organizing her lab) she’s taken on multiple undergraduate students during the summer…

Stephen underwater with a scientific instrument in scuba gear.

Student Spotlight: Stephen Campbell

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Congratulations to Stephen Campbell for receiving the San Diego Association of Geologist's Outstanding Graduate Research Award for his project entitle…

Post-election Statement

Thursday, December 15, 2016

The Department of Languages, Cultures, and Literatures reaffirms its commitment to creating a welcoming and inclusive community.  Our discipl…

Ethnic Studies Major Honored

Friday, December 9, 2016

Ethnic Studies major Jane Henderson was awarded with the 2016 Woman of Impact award! Jane also delivered the keynote address alongside the vener…

Alcalá Review Crowdfunding Initiative

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

The Alcalá Review's crowdfunding initiative is in full swing— help them reach their goal of $3,000 by December 12th! Any and all donation…

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