Thursday, August 24, 2006

Never too old for grad school 

We had a faculty member here who taught for nearly 30 years before finishing his PhD (from the days when the university didn't consider the doctorate a requirement for appointment to the faculty.) Great teacher and maybe the best-read in both current affairs and economic history in the department, he was near sixty years old when he finished the degree, and that was certainly the oldest person to get a PhD in economics that I knew. He retired a few years later. I saw him at a retirement party we gave this summer and he's still reading his Economist and other periodicals and just as sharp on economic affairs as ever.

Sean at The American Mind finds someone older.
After a long and fruitful career, 79-year-old master�s degree graduate Herbert Baum has returned to the University of Chicago to earn his Ph.D. The oldest person ever to be awarded a doctorate by the University, Baum will receive the degree in economics Friday, Aug. 25.
Congratulations, Dr. Baum! May we all have such a love of learning at that age. And Katie at A Constrained Vision notes his committee includes James Heckman, Milton Friedman and Gary Becker, all Nobel winners. You can bet that this is no honorary title.