Dr. Emmett Holman Announces Retirement

After 45 years of service at George Mason University in the Department of Philosophy, Dr. Emmett Holman, Associate Professor in Philosophy has announced that he will be retiring at the completion of the Spring 2016 semester.

Dr. Holman received his B.S. in physics from Pennsylvania State University and his Ph.D. from the University of Maryland. He came to George Mason University in 1970 and taught courses with specializations in 20th century analytic philosophy, philosophy of mind, philosophical issues in cognitive science, epistemology, and philosophical issues relevant to the tensions between reason, science and religious faith in the modern world.  His research focused on the mind-body problem, including the recent revival of panpsychism as an alternative to mainstream physicalism and dualism.

Dr. Holman was recently honored at the University Day award ceremony for his dedication, teaching and 45 years of service at GMU. When asked for his thoughts about his time at GMU Dr. Holman said:

"When I first came here, George Mason had 1500 students and the campus consisted of something like a half a dozen buildings and a couple of trailers.  Now it has thirty-some thousand students and I've lost count of the number of buildings.  Considered just on their own, I can allow that those changes are all to the good.  But there is another part of the story that is not so good.  When I first came here, George Mason also had a terrific General Education (now called "Mason Core") program that insured that every student got a comprehensive, in-depth education in the Arts, Humanities and Sciences. Furthermore, it was also committed to fostering the growth of departments and major programs in all of those areas; and for many years lived up to that commitment. Sadly, all this has changed. In recent years the General Education program has been whittled down, and the Arts and Humanities are now underfunded. That is not to say that I haven’t found my career at George Mason to be extremely fulfilling. I have. I have been part of a noble profession, have gotten paid to do something I would have wanted to do anyway, and for many years was proud to be part of an institution that honored the traditional vision of a liberal education and a liberal arts and sciences university. I am greatly saddened that, both here and nationwide, that vision is being lost. I will be retiring in June. I think I am getting out just in time".