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Ramsay Centre’s Western Tradition course to be offered as a major, Spence proposes

Spence wants Western Tradition to be a major in Advanced Studies

In an email sent to University of Sydney (USyd) staff today, Vice-Chancellor Michael Spence announced that the University is seeking funding from the Ramsay Centre for a new home for the Western Tradition course. 

The announcement follows months of silence on this front, with a spokeswoman for the centre telling Honi that negotiations were “ongoing” back in March this year.

A new major in “Western Tradition” would be offered as part of the current Bachelor of Advanced Studies, Spence proposed. 

The major will have two core units: ‘Introduction to the Western Tradition I’ and ‘Introduction to Western Tradition II.’ Both will follow a ‘great books’ methodological approach. 

Students will undertake an Industry and Community Project Unit (ICPU) alongside five electives across multiple faculties, including Arts, Science, Architecture, Design and Planning and the Conservatorium of Music.

“Over the life of the funding agreement, we believe that around 1100 students could benefit,” said Spence. Most funding will go towards scholarships, bursaries and overseas exchange opportunities.

The Ramsay Centre has been a site of contest amongst student politicians, having attracted significant opposition at USyd and other university campuses around Australia. At the SRC Presidential Debate hosted this afternoon by Honi Soit, Boost candidate Josie Jakovac (Liberal) appeared to support the Ramsay Centre’s involvement with the university. 

The University of Queensland signed a deal with the Ramsay Centre last month.

More to come.