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Emily Barman Named Dean of Loyola’s Graduate School

courtesy of The Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame | YouTubeEmily Barman, Ph.D., plans to begin working as the dean of Loyola’s Graduate School July 1.

After conducting a year-long national search, Emily Barman, Ph.D., has been named the dean of Loyola’s Graduate School, university officials announced in an email April 17. She will officially start July 1. 

She will take over the position from the Rev. Thomas J. Regan, S.J., who has served as the interim dean of the Graduate School since 2017. The university announced April 9 that Regan will leave Loyola June 30 after being reassigned to become the rector — the leader of the Jesuit community — at Fordham University, The Phoenix reported

Loyola’s 15-member search committee— made up of 14 professors and one student — put Barman on a list with three other candidates for this position, noting her commitment to Jesuit values and diversity as key factors for making her a finalist.

“She showed a keen interest in the well-being of graduate students, a clear commitment to many forms of diversity,” the committee wrote explaining why she was hired in the email.

Ultimately the decision to hire Barman was made both by Loyola President Jo Ann Rooney and Provost Norberto Grzywacz, according to the head of the search committee Rhys H. Williams, Ph.D. 

Her academic research focuses on philanthropy and the social organization of non-profit groups. This research has led her to write multiple award-winning books, the latest titled “Caring Capitalism,” which explores how certain goods and services are given societal value within America.

Barman already has experience in running a graduate school, according to the email. The release said in 2017 she was appointed as the associate dean of Boston University’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, the largest college within the university’s graduate school, which offered over 70 masters and Ph.D. programs and had over 1,800 students. Prior to this, she also has taught sociology at Boston University since 2009, the release read.

Williams said that a positive thing that Barman did at Boston University was providing “consistent outreach” to students for students to build community and listing concerns. Williams thinks that outreach would be low-cost and work well within Loyola.  

Loyola’s Graduate School is a diverse and complex school since it spans three campuses and has a wide range of programs from theology to bioethics. The search committee wanted the next dean to be experienced at handling a complicated institution like the Graduate School, according to Williams.

“One of the things that really impressed us about Dr. Barman was that she is a scholar of organizations and institutions,” Williams said. Her academic focus and previous experience as an associate dean was what made the committee think she would be the right person for the job, according to Williams.   

University officials and Barman didn’t immediately respond to request for comment. Barman cited she needed to consult with Grzywacz before talking with The Phoenix.

A challenge she will face as Graduate School dean will be handling the ongoing relations between the university and  Loyola’s Graduate Workers Union, which is a group of graduate students who voted to unionize in 2017. This group advocates for graduate students who work for the university to be considered as workers and not students, The Phoenix previously reported.  

Loyola hasn’t recognized this group as an official union and maintains graduate students should be considered students first and not workers.

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