Monday, March 2, 2015
Dr. Lemuel Watson Dean, School of Education University of South Carolina
Dear Dean Watson,
Thank you very much for meeting with me and Liz Ravlin and Paul Yazel today. I thought it was a productive meeting and we all value your insight.
Our position on the HEBA program is that it is very expensive for us to manage right now. There are very few students in any year and many of them do not have a background in business or economics. It is hard for us to serve this population, for two reasons:
1) We have to staff an Economics of Education course in the summer for just 4 students (2014 HEBA enrollment);
2) The HEBA students take courses in the PMBA program, and these courses are already very crowded. The skills of the HEBA students do not always match the requirements of the courses or the objectives of instructors. It can be difficult for them to do well.
The origin of the HEBA program has made its success difficult. I believe it was conceived at a time when it was thought that the cost would be very low for both the School of Education and the Moore School. It perhaps appeared that it required no new courses, and students could simply take those already offered regularly. That is not the case now and the burden has grown.
With this in mind, we support a moratorium on admissions to the program with the goal of phasing it out — in its present form — for good within a couple of years
Sincerely, John H. McDermott John H. McDermott Professor and Chair, Economics