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From the Dean’s Office

Christy Weer
Interim Associate Dean
Olivier Roche

After the excitement and period of adjustment always experienced at the beginning of each fall semester, the month of October is a period of relative calm when students and professors finally settle in to their weekly schedules. In my view, this is the time of the year that offers the best opportunity to discuss expectations, particularly those for the students recently admitted to the Perdue School of Business. Indeed, we have high expectations for our students – to maintain a level of professional behavior and excellence. Being in constant touch with both local and out-of-state employers, we understand that the education that we deliver must represent more than just a personal achievement recognized by a degree. A business degree is the preparation to “what comes next,” and what comes next is a highly competitive environment. Parents and students have come to realize that times have changed. In the past, good students were easily able to find jobs and sometimes even choose from multiple offers. Nowadays, the job search is often a long and frustrating process that takes time and persistence. Employers have numerous qualified candidates for a single position and it has become increasingly clear that “being good” is now simply not enough. To thrive in this new world, one has to be excellent. When competing among the best, an SU student has to be the best of the best.

To address this challenge, the business school has developed new programs and experiential learning opportunities. For instance, the Management and Marketing Department is now offering new courses in direct and interactive marketing. In addition, students can now graduate with a major in international business. This new major requires the students to show proficiency in at least one foreign language. It also requires future graduates to spend a full semester abroad with one of our overseas partners. Two SU students are currently spending their fall semester in China and Japan. Others will follow in the spring to study at Hong Kong Polytechnic University and Hong Kong Baptist University, two institutions of international standing. Another example is the Information and Decision Sciences Department currently offering courses for students to obtain their SAP certifications (Systems, Applications and Products). This certification is in high demand among employers.

In addition to new courses, the business school also offers a host of experiential learning activities. Case competitions in marketing, ethics and international business are open to all business school students. In the past, SU students have placed well in these competitions. For instance, Salisbury University has been invited twice to the internationally recognized case competition offered by the John Molson School of Business of Concordia University in Montreal, Canada. SU was one of the 24 teams selected among a pool of 48 well-known universities around the world. Other highlights among the business school experiential learning activities include business internships offered through our close relationship with BEACON (Business, Economic and Community Outreach Network) as well as our well-known entrepreneurship competition.

All these experiential learning activities encourage professional behavior that is expected in the business world and they also promote excellence. However, it is the responsibility of every student to take advantage of these opportunities. The role of the business school is to provide the best learning environment. We strive to provide students with opportunities to facilitate their success, but the ultimate objective can only be achieved with proactive students who are dedicated to realizing their full potential.

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