Newly Accredited: Lagos Business School on Earning AACSB Accreditation
Dean of Lagos Business School and member of the AACSB International Board of Directors, Enase Okonedo, discusses LBS's recent AACSB Accreditation.
In this new blog series, AACSB is spotlighting business schools around the globe that have recently earned AACSB Accreditation. We ask the business school deans about their journey to accreditation and what the new achievement means to them. For our first interview, we thought it appropriate to highlight the first school in Nigeria to earn AACSB Accreditation, Lagos Business School. Dean Enase Okonedo shares insights on her school's experience.
Why was it important for your school to undergo the rigorous process of earning AACSB Accreditation?
When the Lagos Business School (LBS) started 25 years ago, we had a clear vision of quickly distinguishing ourselves as one of the best operating business schools in our region, through having world-class standards in teaching, learning, research, academic, and professional management. It was therefore important for us to undergo AACSB’s globally recognized and rigorous accreditation process. In this way, a respected third-party would validate our achievement of the standards we had set for ourselves. AACSB Accreditation was therefore a welcome affirmation that we are indeed a management education provider of high repute in Africa, joining only 5 percent of the world’s business schools in being thus recognized by the body.
AACSB Accreditation also gives Lagos Business School access to a framework to continually improve and measure the quality of its programs. Finally, it positions our institution as the business school of choice not just in Africa but in emerging markets and indeed globally.
We are very well placed to serve our region because our business school programs have local relevance backed by global standards. There is thus no need for any person within our region to go abroad in search of the education we offer well at Lagos Business School.
What did you learn about your school through your accreditation journey?
One of the most heartwarming discoveries through the accreditation journey has been about how we (teaching and non-teaching staff of LBS) collectively share in the vision and mission of the school. From different perspectives and using unique expressions, everybody spoke the same language, showing how naturally they embody the spirit of the institution.
What was the most challenging/rewarding part of the accreditation process?
Undergoing a voluntary world-class accreditation process is a relatively new phenomenon in our environment. As a result, it was often difficult to get our stakeholders to see the importance of the accreditation process and what the school stood to gain with the attainment of the accreditation. Ultimately though, the collaboration of these stakeholders (the business sector, alumni, etc.) during the process has further cemented their ties with us as well as their understanding of our mission.
Feedback received during the process has also inspired some improvements in our processes and activities, which we hope to sustain.
How have your business programs changed as a result of achieving AACSB Accreditation?
As we are still in the early stages after achieving AACSB Accreditation, there have not been any significant changes in our business programs. However, we expect that following the accreditation we will be able to attract students and faculty from other regions.
What advice would you give to another school approaching the accreditation process?
Although the road to the attainment of AACSB Accreditation is a rather tough one, it is useful and rewarding, as it enables the school to demonstrate its high quality, and through the accreditation benchmarks, ensure sustained and continuous improvement. This will lead to superior faculty, students, curriculum, and facilities. It is also rewarding to be counted among the best in the world.
Enase Okonedo is dean of Lagos Business School in Nigeria and a member of the AACSB International Board of Directors.