The AACSB International (Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business) announced this week that the School of Business and The University of North Carolina at Pembroke have received initial accreditation of its undergraduate and graduate business programs.
Founded in 1916, AACSB is the recognized standard for business school accreditation. AACSB accreditation has been earned by only five percent of the world's business programs--there are 672 AACSB-accredited business schools globally.
Achieving accreditation is a process of rigorous internal review, evaluation and modifications, and is concluded after an external review by a peer review team assigned by AACSB.
“The benefits of AACSB accreditation for our students are enormous,” said Dr. Ramin Maysami, dean of the School of Business. “The primary benefit is that AACSB accreditation ensures the rigor of our programs and the high quality of teaching, learning and scholarship.”
AACSB accreditation standards require a high-quality teaching environment, a commitment to continuous improvement, a curricula which is responsive to the most current needs of businesses and a commitment to scholarship and research by the school faculty,” Dr. Maysami said.
Initial accreditation requires 5-6 years of preparation. Maintenance of accreditation reviews occurs every five years to ensure continued compliance with evolving AACSB standards.
UNCP administrators hailed the accreditation as a singular achievement for the university, the School of Business and its students.
“AACSB accreditation demonstrates to the public the high quality of our business degree,” said Chancellor Kyle R. Carter. “Graduating from an AACSB-accrediting institution makes our graduates more competitive in the job market because employers will know UNCP graduates have the required skills and knowledge to be successful in business.
“This accreditation requires the business faculty demonstrate that they have first, met rigorous professional and academic standards; second, deliver a strong business curriculum that is informed by both theoretical and practical knowledge; and third, continually assess the effectiveness of student learning,” Dr. Carter said. “I am extremely proud of this accomplishment and the commitment shown by our business faculty and administration.”
Dr. Ken Kitts, provost and vice chancellor of Academic Affairs, said AACSB is the “gold standard” for accreditation in the field of business education.
“We are delighted to join an elite group of universities that can boast of this certification,” Dr. Kitts said. “This speaks volumes about the quality of our programs of study in the School of Business. With this accomplishment, Dean Maysami and the business faculty have helped to underscore our commitment to academic excellence.”
Dean Maysami said it was a lengthy and detailed process that required an assessment of every component of the School of Business.
“It was a challenging process, and every member of the faculty was involved,” Dr. Maysami said. “The faculty worked very hard on this, and they wanted it badly. I am so glad that we have achieved this milestone as a team.
“The contribution of the school’s Board of Business Advisors and those of the Student Advisory Board must be acknowledged,” Dr. Maysami continued. “Without their input and participation, this achievement would not be possible.
“Similarly, the contribution of other university units - the library, information technology, offices of Advancement, Academic Affairs, Student Academic Support and Retention Services, Institutional Effectiveness and fellow deans were instrumental in achieving a positive report,” he emphasized.
“Work on maintenance of our AACSB reaccreditation begins today,” said Dean Maysami. “It will be another challenging process but we know we can do it again.”
AACSB sent its congratulations to Dean Maysami and the university.
“We welcome The University of North Carolina at Pembroke into the family of AACSB-accredited business schools,” said Robert D. Reid, executive vice president and chief accreditation officer of AACSB International. “AACSB accreditation represents the highest achievement for an educational institution that awards business degrees.”
“It takes a great deal of self evaluation and determination to earn AACSB Accreditation, and I commend UNCP for its dedication to management education, as well as its leadership in the community,” said Reid. “Through accreditation, UNCP has not only met specific standards of excellence, but has also made a commitment to ongoing improvement to ensure that the institution will continue to deliver high quality education to its students.”
Dr. Maysami said that AACSB accreditation helps both students and the School of Business.
“It will assistant our students in the job market and in applying to graduate schools,” Dr. Maysami said. “This accreditation will also help the School of Business recruit faculty and give us direction as well as accountability.”
The oldest accrediting body for business, AACSB’s mission is to advance quality management education worldwide through accreditation, thought leadership, and value-added services. As the premier accreditation body for institutions offering undergraduate, master’s and doctorate degrees in business and accounting, the association also conducts a wide array of conferences and seminar programs at locations throughout the world. AACSB's global headquarters is located in Tampa, Fla., U.S. and its Asia Pacific headquarters is located in Singapore.