On December 31, Linda Shea will step down as Isenberg’s Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs. I am deeply grateful to Linda for her exceptional leadership and service to Isenberg and its students. During her 6 ½ years as associate dean, Linda has elevated and energized our programs and national reputation. She has built a state-of-the-art infrastructure for academic excellence and student services, dramatically increasing our national rankings. And she has emphasized social and community responsibility as an asset in every Isenberg student’s portfolio of skills and experiences.
Under Linda’s leadership, Isenberg became the highest-ranking public undergraduate business school in the Northeast and 11th in the nation, according to Bloomberg Businessweek. Over the past five years, we’ve seen a 49 percent jump in applications, with mean SAT scores increasing more than 90 points during the past eight years. During that time, we have exceeded all other business schools in our progress in the national rankings.
At the same time, Linda fostered continuous improvement in every undergraduate service program through meticulous assessment, planning, and implementation. With such high-performing resources, including our Chase Career Center and programs that foster exemplary academic advising, international study, and business communications, our students graduate with a tremendous market advantage.
They also graduate with a balance of business skills and community service/awareness. As participants in Isenberg’s Citizens First Program, undergraduates leverage coursework, club activities, and other extracurricular avenues to make positive differences in their communities and places of business. One of our striking successes involves annual and semi-annual trips to South Africa, where Isenberg student teams bring donated computers and training to under-resourced schools and parks. “Our aim,” Linda affirms, “is to help jump start computer literacy in as many schools as possible.”
Linda’s innovations will continue to thrive when her successor, Bill Brown, becomes Associate Dean on January 1, 2018. For the past four years, Bill has excelled as Associate Chair and Clinical Associate Professor in our Department of Accounting, spearheading its highly successful AACSB reaccreditation. (In his new role, Bill will work with Tom Moliterno on the AACSB accreditation for the entire school.) As associate chair, Bill has also worked hand in glove with Jeannie Bagdon in energizing a remarkably successful MSA program. The program’s revitalized curriculum and organization have yielded improved student pass rates of 20% on the CPA exam.
As associate dean for undergraduate programs, Bill is sure to combine his trademark thoughtfulness, progressive thinking, and efficiency in securing programs and opportunities for the success of our undergraduates and the faculty who teach them. Bill, in fact, has taught multiple undergraduate classes and was an Isenberg undergraduate (and PhD) recipient himself. In other words, he has an intimate understanding of the Isenberg undergraduate experience from the ground up. Without question, Linda’s exceptional legacy will be in the ablest of hands.