It has been a little over two months since I joined the Lundquist College of Business as dean. And a wonderful couple of months it has been—meeting with faculty, students, staff, UO colleagues, board members, current and potential donors, and partners in Eugene and Portland, and reaching out to others by phone or email to listen, learn, and connect. At every stop, I received the warmest possible welcome and developed a deeper respect for what the college and all of its stakeholders have accomplished in the years since I graduated here (1970). Above all, I sensed optimism about the future, a feeling that the Lundquist College should aim high, and an eagerness to think big. On a personal note, my wife Louise and I are delighted to be back in Eugene after all these years, and we are deeply grateful for the warm reception we have received.
I now have a much better sense of the opportunities and challenges facing the college and look forward to the next couple of months, during which we will shape and refine plans for developing a truly distinctive position in the world of higher education. In earlier communications, I introduced three themes that will guide these plans—a greater focus on interdisciplinarity, a more global posture, and a significant presence in Portland.
With respect to the first—increasing interdisciplinary activities across departments, centers, and other UO Colleges—we have already launched several initiatives. Outside the college we are exploring joint programs/research with other schools within the University of Oregon. Internally we are looking at refining the interdisciplinary missions of each of our centers of excellence (Lundquist Center of Entrepreneurship, Warsaw Sports Marketing Center, Security Analysis Center, and Center for Sustainable Business Practices), as well as of the Leadership and Communications Center, which provides indispensable support services to each of our degree programs.
Activities underway under the heading of “a more global posture” fall into two categories: increasing our study-abroad options in all programs through new exchange programs, international partnerships, and short study tours, and further globalizing the curriculum.
The third initiative—a stronger presence in Portland—targets an expanded, joint working relationship with Portland State and Oregon State Universities focused on delivering degree and non-degree programs to a broad set of audiences.
In this academic year, we will also be reviewed for re-accreditation by AACSB (the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business). We are one of the only 4 percent of the world's more than 18,600 business schools accredited by AACSB. Fortunately, a lot of good work has already been done on this issue, and we can be confident about a good outcome.
Last month, we reopened the Chiles Business Center after three months of breakneck construction during the summer. Students returned to a renovated building featuring more computers and work spaces, a dedicated 60 seat teaching technology lab, and a new Business Research Center that is a resource for the entire campus and business community to conduct focus groups, behavioral research, virtual work demonstrations, and video conferences.
Construction on Anstett Hall (formerly Gilbert) is likewise proceeding on schedule. Once completed in April 2011, it will house the Department of Accounting in a new integrated suite, and consolidate accounting faculty office on the third floor. It will also provide four new classrooms, as well as proper facilities for our PhD students and graduate teaching fellows. Plus, the historic building will be completely modernized, finally implementing our vision to provide a seamless quality among all four wings of the Lillis Business Complex.
Thank you again for all that you do for the college and the university. I hope this update greets you well, and as always, I would love to hear from you.
Cornelis A. "Kees" de Kluyver
Dean and James and Shirley Rippey Distinguished Professor