UNCP names Dr. Mohamed Djerdjouri dean of the Thomas School of Business

Dr. Mohamed Djerdjouri
Dr. Mohamed Djerdjouri

Dr. Mohamed Djerdjouri, a highly successful academic leader with more than three decades of experience in higher education, has been appointed dean of the Thomas School of Business at UNC Pembroke.

Djerdjouri currently serves as dean of the Johnson College of Business and Economics at the University of South Carolina-Upstate.

Provost Marsha Pollard made the announcement following a competitive national search. The Board of Trustees voted unanimously to accept the recommendation of the search committee.

"As provost, I look forward to working with Dr. Djerdjouri on developing academic programs, external partnerships and additional funding streams to support community and economic development in the region that we are so proud to serve,” Pollard said.

Djerdjouri said he considers it an honor to be named dean.

"I look forward to joining an already outstanding school and wish to build on the success achieved by my predecessors, Dean Barry O'Brien and interim Dean Susan Peters," Djerdjouri said.

"This is a great university and Chancellor Cummings has an inspiring vision for it. UNCP is on the move, and I am delighted to be joining such a dynamic academic community and the opportunity to collaborate with Provost Pollard and my fellow deans."

Chancellor Cummings pointed to the school’s success in recent years.

“With growing enrollment, an increasing role in addressing our region’s economic vitality and a new state-of-the-art building, UNCP’s Thomas School of Business is poised to dramatically increase its prominence and impact in southeastern North Carolina and beyond,” Cummings said.

“Dr. Djerdjouri has a proven track record of accomplishments and the demonstrated leadership and experience needed to leverage the expectations and opportunities of the growing school.”

Steve Yost, economic developer and president of North Carolina’s Southeast, commented on the new appointment and the critical role the School of Business has in educating the future business leaders of the state and its economic impact.

“Southeastern North Carolina is fortunate to have a number of drivers in economic development. The Thomas School of Business, including its Entrepreneurship HUB, is now a major contributor to economic growth in the region. Dr. Djerdjouri’s proven leadership indicates he will guide the school toward meaningful and lasting impact for southeastern North Carolina. I applaud the search committee on such an outstanding selection,” Yost said.

During his tenure at USC Upstate, Djerdjouri led a successful reaffirmation of AACSB accreditation and created a master's degree program in business analytics–the first of its kind in South Carolina at the time.

Before USC Upstate, he served as chair of the Department of Management, Information Systems and Analytics at the State University of New York at Plattsburgh. He received the prestigious New York Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching. Previously, Dr. Djerdjouri was also a professor in the School of Commerce at Laurentian University in Ontario, Canada.

Prior to joining academia, he worked as a senior operations research analyst for ROVER Technology Co., a leading logistics company in Philadelphia. Djerdjouri also brings extensive international experience, having lived and worked in Canada, Fiji Islands, United Arab Emirates and his native Algeria.

He earned his bachelor's degree in mathematics from the University of Sciences and Technology Houari Boumediene in Algiers. He earned a master's degree in management science, as well as a Ph.D. in Operations Research from Case Western Reserve University.

"Higher education, in general, and business education are in a pivotal past pandemic juncture," he said. "Stakeholders are demanding change. Business education is challenged to be agile, relevant, and transformative.

"My vision for the Thomas School of Business is a student-centric school, which embraces the digital transformation, emphasizes experiential learning, offers increased student support programs, offers innovative, inter-disciplinary and market-driven academic programs, as well as micro-credentials and certificates."

Additionally, he plans to ensure the school is engaged with the business community and the alumni to positively affect the region's economic well-being.

"I am eager to begin working with the Thomas School of Business faculty, staff, students and alumni and business and community leaders to advance the school's mission and further enhance its outstanding reputation."

Djerdjouri will transition into his new role on July 18.