Daily Egyptian

SIUC economics professor, 63, dies of cancer

By Gus Bode

Akira Takayama, 63, a Vandeveer professor of economics at SIUC, died Jan. 2 at Barnes Hospital in St. Louis after a battle with cancer.

Takayama won numerous awards throughout his career. He was involved in many journals dealing with economics in addition to authoring books on the subject.

The Vandeveer Chair, which Takayama held, was endowed in 1960 through a gift of Ashland Oil and Refining Co. stock made to SIUC by the late W.W. Vandeveer, an alumnus of the University.

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Daniel Premont, SIUC chair of economics, said that Takayama tried to be the best teacher he could be.

He was a very serious scholar and dedicated teacher, Premont said.

Premont said Takayama made sure his students learned everything they needed to know about economics.

He (Takayama) was required to teach one graduate seminar a semester which normally meets for one hour and fifteen minutes three times a week, Premont said, But he would have class for well over two hours, and the students didn’t mind because they knew they were getting a great education.

Premont said Takayama believed education was very important.

He had a sign on his door that read, Education is no weight to carry,’ and that is exactly how he felt, Premont said.

Takayama is survived by his wife, Machiko.

Takayama, who was born in 1932 in Yokohama, Japan, obtained his bachelor’s of economics from International Christian University in Tokyo in 1957. He received his master’s of economics from the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York in 1960. In 1962, he received his doctorate of economics from the University of Rochester, and in 1964 he received his doctor of economics from Hitotsubashi University in Tokyo.

Before coming to SIUC, Takayama worked at several universities including Purdue, Texas A&M and the University of Manchester in Manchester, England.

A memorial service for Takayama will be held at 1 p.m. Feb. 4 in the Indian Building at the SIUC Touch of Nature Environmental Center located south of Carbondale on Giant City Road.

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