Welcome to econ:news, the new delivery format for our Economics Department newsletter. While I am a member of the generation that prefers to read off-line and hold a document in my hands, I cannot challenge the economics of online publications. Even during good budget years, it has been a challenge to pay for the printing and mailing costs of our paper newsletter. And, as you are all too well aware, this has not been a good budgetary year. So, this marks a new beginning for our newsletter, not only are we online but we have a new design. While these changes will improve the newsletter's delivery, in the first go around, our distribution schedule has been delayed since we needed to develop an e-mail address mailing list of our alumni. I certainly welcome any reactions you have to our efforts to improve alumni communications.
As far as news within the department, at the beginning of the 2009-10 academic year, I wrote the faculty informing them of my decision to step down as chair and retire from the faculty at the end of August 2010. I joined the faculty in 1973 and have served as department chair since 1982. When asked how I managed to serve so long as chair, I’ve always replied that it is an easy job. The Department of Economics faculty understand division and specialization of labor, so the faculty does all the work and I take all the credit. While this response usually gets a laugh, there is a fair amount of truth in the statement. I have been blessed throughout my career to work with an excellent faculty, both current faculty as well as my many colleagues who have retired or taken positions elsewhere. In addition, I have had a very strong administrative staff that has made my life and that of our faculty and students much easier. Lastly, at Long Beach, I have had the opportunity to meet many interesting students and members of our alumni who share the same passion as my colleagues and I for the economic way of thinking.
This year will be a year of transition. As reported elsewhere in the newsletter, Dr. Kristen Monaco has assumed the leadership role in the M.A. Global Logistics program, serving as program director. Dr. Wade Martin was the unanimous choice of the faculty to serve as chair, and Dean Riposa has affirmed the nomination. Wade is currently on sabbatical and will assume the duties as chair in 2010-11.
As for my future plans, I expect to continue to work on the Economic Forecast Project and, as a FERP faculty member, I will have an opportunity to do something I have done too infrequently in the past—teach.
Joseph P. Magaddino