The memory of Professor Austin Finan, a longtime faculty member of the School of Business, remains alive on campus today. He is well-regarded by students, alumni and community members who share in the pride he held for the University and the energy and commitment he devoted to its future success.
A veteran of World War II, Prof. Finan was executive officer of the Olean Naval Reserve group and a member of the American Economic Association, and the Academy of Political Science.
In 1986, on the 50th anniversary of the first class of graduates from St. Bonaventure's Business program, Prof. Finan wrote a brief history of the University's School of Business. Below is an excerpt of the text, with more to come.
"This brief history is told from the point of view of one who experienced most of it. Surely it contains some errors and omissions for which you can blame the fallibility of the writer and the incredibly casual attitude of St. Bonaventure University towards record-keeping in the earlier years. In that regard, Father Fidelis O'Rourke often remarked that St. Bonaventure's continued survival was certain proof of the existence of God!
Less has been said of the Accounting curriculum than of others but not because of bias. This largest of the departments has always been strong but its curriculum is largely dictated by New York State's requirements for the CPA and so its faculty has little leeway as to curriculum.
It also may be of interest that Professors Finan and Guson both began teaching as St. Bonaventure in 1941 intending to stay only one year, or two at the most. Between them they accounded for eighty-one years of service. So many more men could have been mentioned but space does not permit. I can only salute them all, including those who are remembered as Uncle Willy, Double-Dip and The Sparrow!
However, since the students are the school, I wish to share with you, at the end of this history, my memories of some of them. To select a few students from a group of thousands is not easy and the choices and omissions cannot be justified in any reasonable way other than that those mentioned were the first to come to mind. I hope these brief tales give you a glimpse of how St. Bonaventure was during the forty-one years of my tenure."
Prof. Austin L. Finan
1986, written on the 50th anniversary of the first class of graduates from St. Bonaventure's Business program.
Enjoy more bits of history by Prof. Finan:
The St. Bonaventure Railroad
The Story of a Few Men
The Department of Commerce
Graduate and Faculty Growth