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CUC Opens New Library For Free Enterprise and Honors Students

Senior+Michelle+Medina+and+junior+Natalie+Gallardo+study+in+the+Liberty+Fund+Library+on+Sept.+11.
Fatima Martinez
Senior Michelle Medina and junior Natalie Gallardo study in the Liberty Fund Library on Sept. 11.

CUC’s Free Enterprise Center hosted an open house on August 31 launching the Liberty Fund Library, a new resource center for honors and Free Enterprise students.

The small room in Krauss 218 has books on economics and political science, a round meeting table, and a free Keurig beverage station.  A large painting on one wall portrays symbols in the ancient Sumerian language that represent freedom.

Michelle Medina, an honors student, said that she loves that there are free snacks and coffee in the room and that she plans to use it a lot more in the future. As well as getting a more quiet spot that not a lot of students can enter. “I really like the area because it’s very private and I have actually been using it in the mornings to get work done,” said Medina. 

The books were donated by the Liberty Fund, an Indianapolis-based organization that was founded by wealthy businessman Pierre F. Goodrich in 1960. Liberty Fund promotes a select list of literature about politics and economics. Goodrich, who died in 1973, was also a founding member of the Great Books Foundation in Chicago. 

“He didn’t like that people were reading summaries of great works instead of reading great works,” said Rachel Ferguson, Ph.D., assistant dean of the College of Business and director of the Free Enterprise Center. “He endowed with his millions of dollars the Liberty Fund, which literally pays faculty to read something, get together, and discuss it.”

Ferguson saw the empty room and spoke with Adam Francisco, CUC’s former head of missions and identity, about making use of the space.

In 2000, the Liberty Fund invited Ferguson to be a part of a colloquia, which is an academic seminar where professors discuss specific books. She has also hosted multiple seminars for college students. 

Ferguson was aware that they did campus placements, which means to create a library for a college campus. When Ferguson contacted them, they wanted to know if the library would be useful at the school. She told them that the Free Enterprise students would find the books helpful and the Liberty Fund then decided CUC would be a good candidate.

Last year, senior Eduardo Hinds traveled to Boston and Vermont to participate in a pair of Liberty Fund seminars. Ferguson had asked Hinds, a business management major and Free Enterprise student, to help her out with events and activities for the Free Enterprise Center.

“She gave me this opportunity to talk about the economy at the house of Milton Friedman,” said Hinds.

Hinds ended up discussing two of Friedman’s books: Capitalism and Freedom, originally published in 1968, and Free to Choose from 1980. The trip was completely paid for by the CUC Free Enterprise Center. 

Hinds also enjoys studying in the Liberty Fund Library. “It’s really nice having our little area,” said Hinds. “It’s nice and quiet and there is not a lot of room for a lot of people, and there are all of these books about liberty, economy, and philosophy.”

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About the Contributor
Fatima Martinez, Reporter