At the beginning of April, my tenure as the eighth dean of the LSU E. J. Ourso College of Business officially began. I am honored and proud that after a nationwide search for the position, the university leadership selected me to lead the college. What a challenge!
Over the next few months, I will be meeting with community leaders, members of the Dean’s Advisory Council, alumni, faculty, staff, and students to help frame a new strategic plan for 2015-20. We are at a critical juncture in the college’s trajectory, and it is vital that we clearly identify our direction for the future. This will include a renewed focus on our core values, creation of centers of excellence, restructuring the faculty, clarifying the types of students we desire to admit, and a variety of other critical issues.
On March 28, 2014, we inducted three of our alumni into the E. J. Ourso College of Business Hall of Distinction. The accomplishments and selflessness of Gregory Hamer Sr., Rose Hudson, and John Landon are striking and enviable. Each is an excellent exemplar for our students to follow. We are all grateful for their close and supporting relationships with the college. That same day, we had another productive Dean’s Advisory Council meeting, and I am pleased with the energy and creativity that our DAC members bring to the table. As the informal board of directors for the college, the Dean’s Advisory Council provides us with invaluable advice and counsel.
As the end of the semester approaches, we are starting to reflect on another busy and successful semester. Our rankings remain strong; our graduation rate is the highest ever. We will soon launch a new Sales Institute in the Marketing Department; the Master’s in Analytics Program and the online MBA continue to grow;, and a new PhD specialization in financial planning was recently announced.
Several of our students have garnered national awards, others have competed in case studies across the nation, and three of them are the first to spend an entire semester abroad at Hong Kong Polytechnic University. As I write this, two groups of MBA students are headed to Brazil and Russia. Members of our faculty continue to be recognized for their research – Professor Kelley Pace will be honored as a Distinguished Research Master, LSU’s most prestigious research award. Kelley, who has been at LSU since 1997, is one of the nation’s top researchers in real estate. Congratulations Kelley!
Thanks to everyone for another great semester and Geaux Tigers!