Robert Curry's heart has always been in Sacramento. He grew up here and received his college education at his hometown institution, Sacramento State College. He earned the B.A. in 1959 and the M.A. in 1961, both in Economics, and then completed the Ph.D. in Economics in 1968 at the University of Oregon. That Robert Curry went on to distinguish himself in his field is indisputable. That he did it by returning to his undergraduate (and MA) alma mater as a faculty member in the Department of Economics who for years gave his best to the students in the classroom is the primary reason that Robert L. Curry's name is among those of the initial group of inductees into the SSIS Academy of Honor and Distinction.
Throughout his career, Professor Curry has focused his attention upon international development, especially as it pertains to Southeast Asia. He has written extensively on the subject in such journals as Asian Thought and Society, the Journal of Third World Studies, the Journal of World Trade Law, and the American Journal of Economics and Sociology. He also has published books through the University of California Press, Prentice-Hall, Duxbury Press, and the U.S. Government Printing Office.
Professor Curry's career has taken him to teaching and research assignments in universities and institutes around the world, among them George Washington University, Hong Kong University, Ho Chi Minh City University, the University of Liverpool, the East-West Center, National University of Singapore, the Library of Congress, the U.S. State Department, and the United Nations. He has been a Fulbright lecturer at Cuttington College of Liberia and Senior Fulbright Lecturer at the University of Zambia. He has received numerous grants and awards from such organizations as the National Science Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities.
The above notwithstanding, what has made Professor Curry one of the most respected of Sac State faculty members has been his willingness enthusiastically to share his excitement about research and his wealth of knowledge with his students. For Professor Curry, teaching has never taken second place. His students in Economics will attest to this, as will those who worked with him for years as he directed the program in International Affairs. Many of those students have themselves gone on to distinguished careers.
Robert L. Curry retired from CSUS in 1999. Since retiring, Professor Curry has taught at the University of Hawaii at Manoa and Ram-Khamhaeng University in Bangkok and Chiang Mai, Thailand. He has offered short courses at the Hanoi Economics University and the University of Agriculture and Forestry in Thu Doc, Vietnam. He continues his research publishing and consulting activities at the East West Center in Hawaii, the Institute for Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore, the Institute for Diplomacy and Foreign Relations in Malaysia and the International Program of Burapha University in Thailand.
"The reason I chose to teach at my alma mater is because it serves the same broad population from which I came. CSU, Sacramento offers an educational opportunity to people whose socio-economic background does not include a history of participation in higher education. My main purpose in teaching at CSUS was to introduce students to the problems, challenges, and excitement inherent in learning about, and taking an interest in, "third world" people and places. I am very proud of the fact that some 65 - 70 of my former students decided to serve developing countries as Peace Corps Volunteers."