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Marshall School of Business | Mr. Strategy Consultant
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Harvard | Mr. British Tech 2+2
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Wharton | Ms. Future CEO
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Harvard | Mr. MacGruber
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Duke Fuqua | Mr. National Security Advisor
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Stanford GSB | Mr. Techie Teacher
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Ross | Mr. NCAA to MBB
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London Business School | Mr. Indian Electric Tech
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Jones Graduate School of Business | Mr. Late Bloomer
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Stanford GSB | Mr. MS From MSU
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Harvard | Mr. Healthcare VC
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D’Amore-McKim Dean Calls It Quits

Dean Hugh Courtney to step down from job at end of the 2016-2017 academic year

Dean Hugh Courtney to step down from job at end of the 2016-2017 academic year

Yet another business school dean is calling it quits after a single five-year term. Following last week’s announcement that the dean of Georgetown University’s McDonough School is stepping down, the dean of Northeastern University’s D’Amore-McKim School of Busi­ness yesterday (June 12) said he would rejoin the faculty after the 2016–17 aca­d­emic year.

For D’Amore-McKim Dean Hugh Courtney, that means he is giving up the job at the end of his five-year contract, just like David Thomas at McDonough (see McDonough Dean To Step Down). The university plans to form a search com­mittee early in the fall to help find a successor.

The former McKinsey partner, who joined Northeastern as dean in July of 2012 from the University of Maryland’s Smith School of Business where he was vice dean, had a productive term. The beneficiary of the largest gift ever to Northeastern’s business school, he led the institution as the uni­ver­sity renamed the school in 2012 the D’Amore-McKim School of Business—made pos­sible by a $60 mil­lion gift from two alumni: Richard D’Amore, BA’76, and Alan McKim, MBA’88. The busi­ness school raised approx­i­mately $50 mil­lion more in the four years that followed.


Despite the huge infusion of cash, Courtney failed to gain much traction in the rankings game for the school’s full-time MBA program. The school slipped one spot last year to 51st on Poets&Quants‘ composite list of the five most influential MBA rankings, from 50th in 2012 when he took over the school as dean. During that same timeframe, the school’s U.S. News ranking dropped one place to 57th from 56th, while it fell ten places to 61st in the Bloomberg Businessweek ranking.

Still, under his lead­er­ship, D’Amore-McKim estab­lished itself as a leading provider of online grad­uate busi­ness pro­grams, increased the size of its undergraduate business program by 16%, and also launched specialized master’s programs in several areas. The school noted that the number of stu­dents par­tic­i­pating in its well-known co-​​op program has increased by 36%, including more global co-​​ops and co-​​ops at star­tups. Under Courtney’s direc­tion, D’Amore-McKim launched an MS in Inno­va­tion pro­gram in 2014, and is launching new full-​​time MBA tracks in health­care and entre­pre­neur­ship as well as new pro­grams that include online ver­sions of the MS in Inno­va­tion and MS in Busi­ness Ana­lytics.

“During his years as dean, Hugh applied his exper­tise in busi­ness strategy and strategic decision-​​making to develop many new pro­grams and ini­tia­tives at DMSB,” wrote Provost James C. Bean in an email to the university community. “Through Hugh’s lead­er­ship, the DMSB offers excep­tional under­grad­uate and grad­uate pro­grams and cul­ti­vates a pio­neering entre­pre­neurial ecosystem for stu­dents as they engage in expe­ri­en­tial learning and inter­na­tional programs.”


D’Amore-McKim said that Courtney also led the way in unbundling grad­uate edu­ca­tion at the uni­ver­sity level, with 10 new credit-​​bearing cer­tifi­cate pro­grams that can be “stacked” into master’s degree pro­grams. At the uni­ver­sity level, he helped lead the devel­op­ment of Northeastern’s cur­ric­ular flex­i­bility ini­tia­tive that has cre­ated new path­ways for stu­dents to more fully explore their diverse interests.

“It is an extra­or­di­nary honor and priv­i­lege to serve the D’Amore-McKim School and North­eastern Uni­ver­sity as dean, and I am thankful to all of my col­leagues for their sup­port and ded­i­ca­tion over the past four years,” Courtney said in a statement. He did not say why he was not renewing his term.


About The Author

John A. Byrne is the founder and editor-in-chief of C-Change Media, publishers of Poets&Quants and four other higher education websites. He has authored or co-authored more than ten books, including two New York Times bestsellers. John is the former executive editor of Businessweek, editor-in-chief of Businessweek. com, editor-in-chief of Fast Company, and the creator of the first regularly published rankings of business schools. As the co-founder of CentreCourt MBA Festivals, he hopes to meet you at the next MBA event in-person or online.