People and Places: November 28, 2023

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Tuesday, November 28, 2023
By AACSB Staff
New deans are announced at La Salle, the University of the West of England Bristol, Audencia, and Augusta.


Mark A. Ritter is the new dean of the School of Business at La Salle University in Philadelphia. Since 2016, Ritter has served as executive-in-residence and lecturer in finance at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut. Since 2021, he also has worked at Gilded, an online physical gold trading company, where he managed integrated risk platforms and handled regulatory reporting. In addition, he has worked for financial services firms in the U.S., the U.K., Japan, and Australia, including spending 20 years at investment banking company UBS. He began his new role at La Salle on November 1.

Andrew Simpson has become dean and head of Bristol Business School at the University of the West of England Bristol. He began on November 1. Simpson spent the last 10 years at Sheffield University Management School in the U.K., where he was chair of management. He previously worked in consultancy in the sector of small and midsize enterprises. His research interests include forecasting techniques in military supply chains, data-led decision-making in organizations, and lean operations within public sector contexts. He is also a reviewer for the International Journal of Production Economics and the European Journal of Operational Research.

Audencia Business School in Nantes, France, has selected Sébastien Tran as the new general director. His mission will be to pursue the school’s ECOS 2025 Strategic Plan and complete major development projects, including construction of Audencia’s future Paris campus. For the past five years, Tran has held various leadership roles at the Pôle Léonard de Vinci, a private university cluster in France. He previously held positions with the Excelia Group, EM Normandie, and ISC Paris. He joins Audencia on January 5. Until then, Laurent Métral, who has been president since 2016, will continue to act as interim dean.

Mark A. Thompson has been announced as dean of the James M. Hull College of Business at Augusta University in Georgia. He began his new role on November 10 after serving as interim dean since March. A faculty member at the school since 2013, Thompson also has served as associate dean and the Grover C. Maxwell Chair of Business Administration and professor of economics. During his time there, he has overseen the college’s internal operations and developed a summer grant program to provide salary support for research and teaching projects. Thompson also has served on the faculty in the College of Nursing, in the division of health economics and policy, in the department of population health sciences, and the Medical College of Georgia.

David Malpass, former president of the World Bank, will join Purdue University on January 1. Malpass will split his time between Purdue’s campuses in West Lafayette, Indiana; Indianapolis; and Washington, D.C. He will serve as the Distinguished Fellow of International Finance at the Mitchell E. Daniels Jr. School of Business and as the Inaugural Fellow of Global Business and Infrastructure at Purdue@DC. During his tenure at the World Bank, the organization committed over 450 billion USD in loans and grants to meet multiple global crises. In addition to holding a number of leadership roles at the World Bank, Malpass has been an economist on Wall Street and a member of corporate and nonprofit boards.

New Programs

Next September, Imperial College Business School in London will offer a new MSc in Global Health Management, a redesign of a previous health management program. The new degree will broaden the scope beyond healthcare provision to provide participants with increased exposure to global health challenges, sustainability issues, and other complex factors that impact health. The interdisciplinary program will include collaborations with Imperial’s School of Public Health and the Dyson School of Design Engineering. Students will have the option to study three new concentrations: management, innovation and entrepreneurship, and economics and data science.


POLIMI Graduate School of Management in Italy and EDHEC Business School in France are offering students who participate in their exchange program the opportunity to receive a double degree dedicated to management and sustainability. Students who are already enrolled in POLIMI’s International Master in Business Analytics and Big Data and EDHEC’s Grand Ecole Master in Management can earn an additional degree: the Master of Science in Management and Leadership from EDHEC and the International Master in Environmental Sustainability and Circular Economy from POLIMI. The program also is offered to alumni who graduated from POLIMI in the past two years and current graduate students from EDHEC.

Bentley University in Waltham, Massachusetts, has launched a multiyear partnership with the NBA team the Boston Celtics. The partnership gives Bentley students opportunities to develop solutions to real-life business situations and make presentations to executives from the Celtics. Students also will work with CLTX, the team’s official affiliate for NBA 2K, a basketball sports simulation platform. By analyzing industry trends and applying their own business knowledge, students will propose ways that CLTX can reach new markets and grow its audience. In addition, beginning this season, Bentley will sponsor an annual career day at Celtics headquarters, where students will speak to front-office staff about careers in the business of sports.

Hult International Business School’s new collaboration with psychology organization Mindflick will give Hult’s full-time MBA students access to Mindflick’s performance tool designed to help people develop the psychological adaptability to thrive in a constantly changing world. The performance tool was developed in the world of high-performance sports as the company worked with Olympians, Paralympians, Formula 1 drivers, and Premier League footballers. The tool helps people shift mindsets and behaviors, become more adaptable, learn how stress can impact behavior, and see how small changes can make a big impact. The tool is already being used by about 300 students at Hult campuses in Boston, London, Dubai, and San Francisco.

Centers and Facilities

The University of Wisconsin–Whitewater College of Business and Economics has launched the Women in Business Institute (WIBI), which will be led by Rashiqa Kamal, associate professor of finance. WIBI is designed to support current female college students in their pursuit of business education while helping all business students understand the importance of embracing change in the workplace. Events such as the WIBI Speed Networking Event will bring together students, alumni, and community leaders.

ESMT Berlin has installed a photovoltaic (PV) system on the roof of its main building. The PV system will cover about 25 percent of the school’s electricity needs in the future. It is equipped with dark monocrystalline high-performance modules that create a uniform roof design while preserving the historic appearance of the building. The system, which will be connected to the electricity grid in January, is expected to enable the school to reduce an estimated 150 tons of CO2 emissions annually.

Last month, the School of Business at Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven officially cut the ribbon on a new four-story, 60,000-square-foot building. The facility includes nine general classrooms, specialized classrooms and lecture halls, a behavioral lab area with an observation room, a community room that can seat 100 people, a large classroom and administrative suite for the MBA program, and an area designated for financial market and data analytics. The new building, which is powered by solar panels and heated and cooled by geothermal wells, has a net-zero carbon footprint.

Other News

The University of Virginia (UVA) in Charlottesville is launching a universitywide entrepreneurship initiative to make it easier for students, faculty, staff, alumni, and investors to navigate the entrepreneurial ecosystem. The university will support the initiative by developing entrepreneurship leaves for faculty; providing funding to help translate technology and physical science research into marketable products; providing funding for programming and staff; and, eventually, creating a central gathering space. The new initiative will be led by Mike Lenox, the Tayloe Murphy Professor of Business Administration at the Darden School of Business. Lenox, who is also the newly appointed special advisor to the provost on entrepreneurship, will coordinate efforts with the provost and the president of UVA.

If you have news of interest to share with the business education community, please send press releases, relevant images, or other information to AACSB Insights at [email protected].

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