Welcome Back From Dean Zhan Li

As we begin the 2016-2017 school year, I’d like to welcome everyone back, as well as those just beginning.  The upcoming year promises to be exciting as we greet new students and several significant changes.

Dean Zhan Li

First of all, we are welcoming seven new full-time faculty members joining our School:

Marco Aponte, Assistant Professor in Global Business
Naman Desai, Assistant Professor in Accounting (starting in January 2017)
Dominik Kalisch, Visiting Assistant Professor in Business Analytics
Winnie Scott, Associate Professor in Accounting (starting in January 2017)
Vilma Sielawa, Assistant Professor in Economics
Greg Wolcott, Assistant Professor in Business Ethics and Social Responsibility
Lili Yan, Assistant Professor in Business Ethics and Social Responsibility

We have been proactive and successful in launching new innovative academic programs over the past year, including our M.S. in Business Analytics Program, which was launched in this academic year with an actual enrollment doubling the targeted number. We are looking forward to the launch of the second cohort of this degree program in Silicon Valley in October. We revitalized one of our marquee MBA programs, the Trans-Global Executive MBA, transitioning it into a rigorous, focused 12-month format, and we are currently working on a comprehensive update to our Executive MBA Program that will bring many positive changes and updates to the Bay Area’s original executive MBA program.

Our new Master of Science in Management Program, creatively designed to aid students with liberal arts, science, engineering and other non-business majors in their professional and career development, started in July. We have also included an innovative mentorship aspect to the program: Masters of Science in Management advisory board members have been matched with students based on professional background, students’ interests and students’ previous majors.

Our innovative Interfaith Leadership minor is now available for undergraduate students.. This fall, we are also very excited to be launching the new undergraduate Business Analytics concentration. Graduates of this program will be able to perform advanced quantitative analysis for effective decision-making, extract value from data and analytics into actionable organizational decisions, and demonstrate proficiency with programming and software tools for analytics. Additionally, our innovative Interfaith Leadership minor is now available for undergraduate students. 

Following new initiatives in 2015-2016, the upcoming year promises to build on our offerings and momentum. The student-run Responsible Investment Fund, which continues to outperform other funds in the same category, was recently featured in a San Francisco Chronicle article for its emphasis on responsible investment. The Guyette Leadership Fellow Program is going strong, having just graduated its first cohort of students with impressive career and professional outcomes. Employers in the Bay Area—such as Chevron, PG&E, Kaiser Permanente, and Oracle—are taking notice of our progress and are hiring more and more of our students. For example, at Firm Night, 30 Bay Area accounting firms came to campus to recruit SMC students. Deloitte and PricewaterhouseCoopers have each hired about 10 SEBA undergraduate and graduate students for internships and jobs in the past year. 

I am also glad to report that the Matt and Traci Entrepreneurial Scholarship has been established. We are in the process to award two such scholarships, $10,000 each, to our undergraduate students. Excitingly, a number of our faculty members have been awarded endowed professorships in the last year to recognize their achievements in scholarships:

Chevron Professorship: Professor Tina Zhang
Guyette Professorship in Responsible Leadership: Professor Nancy Lam
Stull Professorship in Entrepreneurship: Professor Berna Aksu
TransAmerica Professorship in Business Policy: Professor Michael Hadani

Staff and faculty also have much to look forward to this year.  This week, many faculty and staff members will be moving to our new SEBA home in the former Power Plant facility across from Galileo Hall.  If you have not yet had the opportunity to check out the new offices, I encourage you to do so—facilities, led by Diane Hardy, has done a fabulous job transforming the space into a state-of-the-art business school facility.  Following the move to the Power Plant, the remaining Rheem faculty and staff will be moving up to a refurbished BUG Hall.  By the end of the year, all SEBA faculty and staff will be located on campus, launching a new era for the school and College.

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.  We have much to look forward to this year!