Welcome Back From Dean Zhan Li

Welcome to the new academic year of 2017-18!

Zhan Li

First of all, please join me in welcoming our new full-time faculty members:

Noha Elfiky, Assistant Professor in Business Analytics
Andras Margitay-Becht, Associate Professor in Economics
Anna Maximova, Assistant Professor in Economics
Navid Sabbaghi, Assistant Professor in Business Analytics
Navin Koosrajoo Veerapa, Visiting Assistant Professor in Marketing
Kelly L. Weidner, Assistant Professor in Marketing
 
We have continued to make progress in the critical areas of Saint Mary’s College and SEBA’s strategic plans. To elevate academic excellence and distinction, we have revised our EMBA curriculum in order to introduce concentrations in business analytics and leadership. So far, the market response has been very encouraging. Our first cohorts of the revised curriculum will start in October. CEO Magazine ranked our hybrid EMBA program among the top 20 in the world again in 2017, two years in a row. 
 
To develop critical thinking, analytical, and problem solving skills and to prepare our students for modern, increasingly technology-driven economies, we launched the coding certificate initiative with the SEBA freshman class. This was done in order to make our students even more competitive for internships and jobs after they graduate. In 2017, our BUSAD was ranked again amongst the top 25 in the nation for the “Best Return-on-Investment undergraduate business programs” by PayScale.   
 
To address financial sustainability and affordability, we recently reorganized our operations, guided by the SMC’s Workforce Planning Initiative, to make our processes more streamlined and efficient. We launched a two-year scholarship initiative to raise $500,000 undergraduate scholarships. I am glad to report that we raised $300,000 in the first year. We are exploring opportunities of overseas degree and certificate programs. We are also evaluating new revenue-generating programs on campus.
 
By the way, have you stopped by the Power Plant building and looked in the lobby? Did you see that there are 20 different national flags? These flags represent the countries our faculty members come from. I have no doubt that our students benefit tremendously from these diverse, multicultural perspectives in the classroom. The SEBA Inclusive Excellence Taskforce, in partnership with CCIE and Chief Diversity Officer, is also designing programs to further advance diversity and inclusion within our school. All of these support the School’s strategic focus of, “Think Globally. Lead Responsibly.”
 
In collaborating with the AACSB, we have formed the peer review team for the reaccreditation visit on November 5-7, 2018. We are now preparing ourselves in earnest for this reaccreditation. As you know, only 5 percent of the business programs in the world can claim the distinction of AACSB accreditation.
We have many other events, speakers, and initiatives in the works for the upcoming year that we can’t wait to announce in the coming months. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of you—students, alumni, staff, and faculty—for your continued commitment to growing and improving our programs and our SEBA community. 
 
Sincerely, 
 
Zhan Li. Dean